Biography of Herbert W. Eustace

In 2008, upon dissolution, the Herbert W. Eustace Trust “passed the torch” to the Plainfield Christian Science Church, Independent, entrusting our church with the responsibility of being the sole supplier of Mr. Eustace’s superb book, CHRISTIAN SCIENCE, ITS “CLEAR, CORRECT TEACHING” AND COMPLETE WRITINGS. We had had no previous contact with the Trust, but in recalling our history since becoming independent, and in reading about Mr. Eustace’s experience (excerpted below), it becomes apparent that the Trust was divinely inspired! The similarities between Mr. Eustace’s and our experience in separating from “ecclesiasticism” are many.

Herbert W. Eustace was “excommunicated forever” from the First Church of Christ, Scientist in 1922, and this fact was even published in the Boston Post — details in the beginning of his book, CHRISTIAN SCIENCE, IT’S “CLEAR, CORRECT TEACHING.” Without a hint of bitterness, Mr. Eustace writes:

“Mrs. Eddy defines Church as ‘The structure of Truth and Love; whatever rests upon and proceeds from divine Principle.’ To me, therefore, this so-called excommunication was simply a gesture of ecclesiasticism, because excommunication can be brought about only by one’s own departure from Principle. The right to teach and to practise Christian Science is based upon one’s own state and stage of consciousness. Therefore, as a Christian Scientist, I could not do otherwise than continue to practise and hold classes.

“Particularly pertinent, in this connection, is Mrs. Eddy’s reference to ‘our far Western students, the Christian Scientists,’ . . . . Self-evidently Mrs. Eddy meant by her expression ‘our far Western students, the Christian Scientists,’ those students throughout the world who express and represent that for which the West, and especially the far West, has always so preeminently stood, namely: freedom, unbiased by tradition; the determination to think and act for one’s self in line with the right; the determination to accord to all the same privilege, thereby typifying true individualism, namely man’s eternal right to think and act in accord with Principle . . . .

“Since that time I have been busier and more active in the work of Christian Science than ever before. In being released from every form of ecclesiastical organization, I was freed from such trammels, so that my work became to that extent unhampered by human belief and regulation. I have held numerous classes in various parts of the United States. The demand for ‘clear, correct teaching’ is becoming greater all the time, and will so continue, for it has no personality or human control attached to it, and it is this very freedom for which the mortal is striving. He is learning, at last, no longer to put his faith in person or organization, but to trust in his own effort to understand divine Principle. . . .

“My experiences in Christian Science I consider a great privilege. Through them I have been able to understand more clearly the fallacy of ecclesiastical organization.

“The especial privilege of being ‘excommunicated’ has been tremendously enlightening. I understand it was not a person but that which was being upheld — ‘clear, correct teaching,’ individual oneness and responsibility to divine Principle, true democracy, that was excommunicated (released) from ecclesiastical bondage.

“Invariably ‘You may know when first Truth leads by the fewness and faithfulness of its followers. Thus it is that the march of time bears onward freedom’s banner. The powers of this world will fight, and will command their sentinels not to let truth pass the guard until it subscribes to their systems; but Science, heeding not the pointed bayonet, marches on. There is always some tumult, but there is a rallying to truth’s standard.’ (S&H)”

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