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Christian Science in the news

Below are articles in the news primarily written by Christian Science Committees on Publication. Please support the Press Room by sharing these articles.

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Woman

Source: Photostogo / Model used for illustrative purposes only.

George Lucas speaks and Hollywood listens. But it wasn’t always that way.

He once described his first six years in the film business as “hopeless”. The industry just didn’t get it. Here’s what he said in an interview with the Academy of Achievement organization in Washington: “All of my films have been very hard to understand at the script stage because they’re different. At the time I did them they were not conventional. The executives could only think in terms of what they’d already seen.”

That’s a good description of the inside-the-box thinking that we too seldom question, and that would hide some new vision that could impact our lives in a big and perhaps meaningful way. What a shame for filmmakers and viewers alike if Lucas had stopped knocking on doors and pleading with executives to think differently.

St. Petersburg Times (Florida), February 26, 2011
By Bob Clark

I’ve been enjoying Personal Best, and the breadth of ideas it offers about how to be and stay healthy. I like reading about people who are proactive about their health. These pages have become a force for healthy living in our community. I’m grateful for that and want to give back. So here’s a question for other Personal Best readers: Does spirituality play an important role in being and staying healthy?

Research indicates that many of us would say yes. Spirituality, defined as a belief in and appeal to a spiritual power outside the body, is more prevalent in America than you might think. A 2008 Pew Forum on Religious and Public Life poll shows that:

Drop of water

Source: Photostogo

Looking out my window at home I still see several inches of snow lining the walkway. As is routine for New Englanders in mid-February I won’t take a step outside without my winter coat and gloves.

But this time there’s a hint of something unexpected. Change is in the air.

Look carefully and you see tiny buds coming through on some of the trees, and once in awhile when you step into just the right sunny spot you feel a momentary warmth that tells you winter’s cold spell is loosening its grip.

Seasons are changing in the world of medicine as well.

I like how Dr. Larry Dossey characterizes the different eras of modern medicine and how the field has gradually but dramatically changed over many decades. Era 1 medicine began in the mid-1800’s, a period when physicians treated human bodies as mindless machines. Era 2 in the mid-1900’s saw physicians acknowledging that the human mind did have a bearing on one’s health. Research into the placebo effect and how stress and anxiety negatively impact one’s health paved the way for what we know today as mind-body medicine.

Guest Blog
Written by Tony Lobl, District Manager for the Committee on Publication in the U.K., Ireland and the E.U.

Pills

Source: Photostogo

Are you one of the 245,386?

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health in the United Kingdom, Earl Howe, reported on records of adverse drug reaction (ADR) obtained from health professionals, patients and indirectly from the pharmaceutical industry via the Yellow Card Scheme.

Howe said that since 2000, in England and Wales, 245,386 ADR reports have been received of which, 10,446 (4 per cent) recorded a fatal outcome.

In the United States, the equivalent figures are staggering. According to JAMA, the Journal of the American Medical Association, in 1996 108,000 Americans died in hospitals alone “from adverse reactions to Federal Drug Agency approved drugs properly administered by licensed medical professionals”. In the same year, 2.2 million Americans had adverse reactions to FDA-approved drugs

On Faith Panel
The Washington Post, February 9, 2011

Building

Source: Photostogo

Q: With former Utah governor Jon Huntsman and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney both believed to be gearing up for a run for the presidency, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has again found itself answering questions about what these two prominent members believe.

Post reporter Sandhya Somashekhar wrote in a story published Tuesday that Mormon leaders see the ascendancy of these and other Mormons (such as convert Glenn Beck) as a sign “that the community has finally ‘arrived,’” but added “researchers say there remains a deep mistrust of Mormons and that little has changed in public opinion to suggest that voters will be more open this year than they were in 2007.”

If conservative Christian and Mormons share a political agenda, why do suspicions still plague Mormon politicians? Do media personalities such as Glenn Beck help or hurt the cause?

I was in Utah many months ago to meet and visit with my counterpart in media relations at the Mormon Church. We spent most of an afternoon comparing experiences as spokespersons for religious organizations that are viewed by a few people as…well…unusual. There we were: “the people who don’t drink” sitting across the table from “the people who don’t go to doctors.” You should have seen the fireworks.

On Faith Panel
The Washington Post, February 1, 2011

Gavel on a Bible

Source: Photostogo

Q: Mike Huckabee, the conservative former Arkansas governor, this weekend said that he is concerned about Islam’s role in Egypt’s future. As On Faith panelist Reza Aslan this week noted, Huckabee has also called for Americans to “take this nation back for Christ” and, while running for president in 2008, declared that “what we need to do is to amend the Constitution so it’s in God’s standards.”

In America and in Egypt, should a majority religion inspire political life? How will Islam play a role in the struggles for democracy happening now in Egypt and other parts of the Muslim world?

About an hour before I read this question I was in New York having lunch with a couple of colleagues and the conversation turned to religion in public life

Like many people, I’ve been so thrilled to hear the good news about Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ recovery.  What a wonderful turn of events out of such a tragedy in Tuscon several weeks ago.

Even doctors are amazed at Giffords’ progress.

MSNBC has a clip of Dr. Michael Lemole, Giffords’ chief neurosurgeon in Tuscon, saying, “Miracles happen every day. And in medicine we like to very much attribute them to either what we do or others do around us, but a lot of medicine is outside of our control and we’re wise to acknowledge miracles.”

Standard-Times (New Bedford, Massachusetts) January 29, 2011
By Linda Andrade Rodrigues, Staff Writer

Christian Scientists believe that God created them whole and healthy.

A religious teaching and Bible-based system of spiritual healing, Christian Science theology teaches that it is not God’s will that anyone suffer or be sick, but rather it is God’s will for each individual to have health and life.

“Christian Science is not about becoming a follower of a religion but using its ideas,” explained Kenneth Girard, who represents Christian Science in the media and government lawmaking in Massachusetts. “For 140-plus years people all over the world have found it useful to practice and an option to care for their health.”

A man giving a moment of silence

Source: Photostogo / Model used for illustrative purposes only.

When tragedy strikes as it did in Tucson and we’re invited to a moment of silence, an opportunity for contemplation, prayer or to pay honor to the victims and their families.

We all know the appropriateness of such moments, but may not have given much thought to what we can do during them, or what we can accomplish with them. Should we expect more from those moments than mere silence? Can any meaningful change or empowerment or growth take place?

It’s easy to be skeptical. After all, it’s just a moment, and we’re just ordinary people who don’t have much power to accomplish grand things.

And yet, isn’t that selling ourselves terribly short? Is this, instead, an opportunity to do great things

A man with his arm open to the sky on a hill top

Source: Photostogo / Model used for illustrative purposes only.

A recent Wall Street Journal headline caught my eye: Conquering Fear. The piece was well-written by Melinda Beck, the Journal’s new Health columnist, and while I was intrigued by the ways in which therapists are helping people address their fears, I wanted to add a post script to the story. There’s another approach to conquering fear that wasn’t mentioned.

The three ways that were highlighted were: changing behavior (instead of worrying that I’ll get fired, I’ll work harder), denial (stop focusing on why I might get fired and think about the positive comments recently made by my boss), and the latest approach, acceptance (most people worry about their jobs, so get over it). My addition to the list might be something like authoritative denial (you have more authority over your thoughts and your life than you realize—you don’t have to be afraid at all, really).

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