The Thanksgiving Day service is the only ‘special’ service the Christian Science church offers. The readings from the desk include the Presidential proclamation for Thanksgiving, as well as a few passages from The Bible and Science and Health. The service is then opened to the congregation for them to share ‘testimonies of healing and sharing of experiences in Christian Science.’
The following are testimonies from Ex-Christian Scientists, as they give thanks for having left Christian Science. Thank you all for your contributions!
We at The Ex-Christian Scientist offer no readings, or lengthy proclamations, merely our sincerest thanks for everyone who has contributed to our efforts. We do not advocate any one particular path but acknowledge that there are many legitimate pathways that can be personally and spiritually fulfilling.
This “Thanksgiving” (which I now observe as an Indigenous day of mourning), I’m so grateful to live in reality — having escaped from the cult of Christian Science (I was 4th generation) and its toxic, nonsense, magical thinking. Cult recovery and C-PTSD healing are a long road, especially when all my current health problems as an adult are the direct results of childhood medical and emotional neglect and abuse at the hands of my CS parents and grandparents, as well as adults at CS camp, school and boarding house, and my CS ex-spouse. But I’m so thankful now for the ability to see all that horrific abuse for what it was, to know that CS has always been pure evil, and to know it will never again have a place in any part of my life, my heart, or my body — all of which are very real. I only wish I believed in hell, because Mary Baker Eddy certainly deserves to burn for all eternity, but thankfully death and destruction are also real. I hope and pray that CS, TMC, branch churches, camps, schools, “nursing” facilities, etc. all follow her as soon as humanly possible. Amen.
There are many things I am grateful for (including the word ‘grateful’ that I am working to reclaim from Christian Science). Among the best decisions I ever made was to finally leave Christian Science after spending the first 42 years of my life swimming around in what I call the ‘Krazy Sauce’. My gratitude for having left Christian Science came clearly into focus during the COVID-19 pandemic. I can’t even begin to imagine the inner conflict I would have felt in having to deal with a pandemic that could not be denied, in the face of a faith that would have demanded that I deny it despite the public health mandates that would have demanded that I acknowledge at least some sort of “pandemic reality”. I am grateful that I effortlessly, and without even a second thought, received an entire course of the COVID-19 vaccine (I have had the initial two shots, plus two boosters). As a Christian Scientist, I would have been in the deepest mental and emotional turmoil even just getting the jab in the arm or wearing a mask. Not having to work through the cognitive dissonance that Christian Science theology imposes while dealing with the undeniable reality of a pandemic, is also something I am tremendously grateful for. I’m also grateful that I do not have to sit in idle boredom, listening to readings from the Bible and Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures anymore.
It is wonderful to be a part of this special, annual service. I am so grateful to read all the testimonies from those of us who left Christian Science. It brings me so much joy to find community with folks who have found freedom.
I feel so thankful today for having left Christian Science. My life has become amazing after realizing Christian Science was all an elaborate hoax.
I left Christian Science almost a decade ago now. I launched on a big self-healing journey: I walked away from my god, my church, my friends, my community, my still-in-CS family (thankfully I have mended fences with my family; I love them very much). After that, I walked away from my marriage. I am in a new relationship with MYSELF! I am finally doing things that make me feel happy – like writing books, and cooking good food. I wasn’t able to do those things while trapped in previous circumstances.
I am also finally taking care of my body. I have had to play “catch up” with medical care. Having had zero vaccinations growing up, I have had to go to the local Health Department where I live to get vaccines for all the things. I am so grateful to the health care folks there who can figure out my doses.
I just got my Shingles vaccine, and next week I get my first shot for Polio. I also want to say I am grateful for mundane things that symbolize that I am human and happy – I love my morning cup of black tea with vanilla creamer. I love taking my daily medicines that help control my heart rate and my migraines. I love being able to take pain relief pills when I need them.
I love being in a new relationship with someone who takes care of me when I am sick. I love being in a relationship that gives me all the affection I have been desperate for, my entire life. I get all the hugs and cuddles I ever wanted and never got. My human side is acknowledged every day, and honored for its basic needs. It’s quite fun, being human.
There are times when it’s terrible, too, though. I fight severe anxiety and depression every day. More and more, I am starting to win that battle.
I want to express one more thing I am thankful for – ice cream. I am starting to buy a new flavor every time I need to buy ice cream. I am having so much fun trying all the flavors of ice cream. There are so many – and I love most of them. It is so delightful to take pleasure in a taste. Tasting matter. Matter is real and so enjoyable. There – I said it.
I am so grateful to be finding pleasure and happiness in my life, now that I fully acknowledge that matter is actually real and tangible. Happy Thanksgiving!
- Just Jodi
It wasn’t until I left CS that I could truly heal and come into my own. I gradually moved away from CS in my early 20s. Finding a (psychological) therapist and going on appropriate medication for me was life-changing. Imagine being able to take Advil for a budding migraine and that migraine not really appear! How wonderful that an SSRI can help with the crippling anxiety that prayer was utterly ineffective against. I now have a wonderful husband, child, and career, and I know I couldn’t have done it with CS! I am so grateful!
I am so grateful for modern medicine. My father had a knee replacement this summer that has allowed him increased mobility and independence as he heals. My meds keep me healthy and sane on a daily basis. My sister and her family are able to travel around the world, because they are protected by the vaccinations and regions specific medications that their doctors were able to give them before they left. My son did not suffer any long-term complications from a head injury this fall, other than a scar on his eyelid! I am always uncomfortable, thinking about how all of these situations would have resolved if we were all still practicing Christian scientists.
As of this year I’ve been out of CS longer than I was in it. Every time I think I have it all out of my system I find another legacy of the collective make-believe that is CS. As annoying as that is, I’m grateful for the struggle to meet the world as it really is while getting to be and admit who I really am… and for benadryl.
Thank you everyone for your Thanksgiving Testimony contributions, this concludes our post. Should inspiration strike, the comment section will remain open for 30 days.
We wish you a wonderful holiday season. The ExCS Admin Team