It’s hard to believe, but it’s been one year since releasing Leaving Christian Science:10 Stories of New Faith in Jesus Christ into the world. So many good things have come out of the publishing of this book, even though it was very difficult on a personal level and continues to provide new and unique challenges. I think of this project as, ‘coming out of the former-cult closet.” Many who’ve known me for the past 20 years didn’t know much about my religious upbringing. Releasing a book that tells all about one’s experience in a religious cult is complicated, yet I’ve seen God working and moving in myself and in others in ways I could not have imagined over the last twelve months.
As a celebration of the one-year anniversary, I wanted to share some of the ways my book has been helpful to others:
Help for Non-Christian Scientists (‘Nons’)
Perhaps one of the biggest ways this book has helped people is that it has provided a lens into the world of Christian Science for Nons. Over the years, the Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists (FFCS) receives calls and emails from people married to Christan Scientists who are trying to better understand their spouses. Because this book shares the stories of 10 former Christian Scientists, it helps unpack some of the bad theology and warped worldview through storytelling.
Comments from ‘nons’ after reading Leaving Christian Science:
I have been waiting for over 35 years for someone to write a book like this, which provided numerous person’s perspective backgrounds, and experiences surrounding Christian Science. And, more latterly, their reasons for leaving Christian Science, and also how they finally arrived at their decisions, after experiencing the indoctrinations of a Christian Science religion, since childhood.
I’d highly recommend this book to anyone within the Christian Science faith who wants to see why thoughtful, honest former members left. Amazon Reviers, R. Cannata
This is a book I’ve been waiting 30 years for and didn’t know it. It contains stories of hope and liberation and faithfully tells of the difficulties of leaving Christian Science to the fulfillment that comes from embracing Jesus as savior. I found the book to be very helpful for those of us living with a spouse still in Christian Science. All testimonies of conversion are inspiring, but particularly so when you know the obstacle that the Christian Science system presents to escaping and finding healthy thought processes. Seeing through these stories how God has acted has been marvelous. I highly recommend this book for those living with a spouse still following Christian Science. -Amazon Revier, Doug
As someone who has worked in the field of cultic studies for nearly four decades and myself having exited from a similar, but different background than Christian Science, this is a must-read for anyone looking for insights and recovery from false teaching and the abuse experienced in Christian Science. The book is exceedingly user-friendly, compassionate, and well-informed. I highly encourage its reading for those disillusioned with Christian Science and more broadly anybody seeking to better understand how false religious ideas within any church has consequences producing abusive behavior, but that hope and healing is possible irrespective of our personal histories.” -Becoming Free, Patrick J. Knapp, PhD
I married a man who left Christian Science as a teen. This book is well-written and explains a lot of mindsets that I didn’t realize were connected to this cult. -Amazon Reviewer, Amy F.
This book opened my eyes to the rituals, beliefs, and practices of those in Christian Science and helped me understand some of the pain, confusion, mind re-wracking, and healing that had to happen when they truly began to follow the ways of Jesus. You will be inspired by these stories and challenged to love your Christian Science neighbors well.” -Amazon Reviewer, Alyssa
Reading the book ‘Leaving Christian Science’ has been an eye-opening, enlightening experience on many levels. The stories were heart-touching and heart-wrenching at the same time; as you could feel the grappling of the individuals as they walked the path of huge change in the perspective of what they believed to be the base of their lives. There was a compassionate kindness and sensitivity in the telling of the stories while still maintaining the honesty of the journey. They all must be applauded for sharing such deeply personal stories with genuine grace. I was also drawn to the excellent organization in the book to supply background information and support perspective to both the Christian Science faith and the Christian faith throughout the book and in the addendums as I was not aware of many of the Christian Science tenets. I was pleased and privileged to receive an advance copy of the book and participate in the launch team. A compelling read, to understand yet another ‘culture’s views as it opens you to enormous perspectives and re-evaluations.” Amazon Reviewer, Judy
Comments from former Christian Scientists after reading Leaving Christian Science:
Leaving Christian Science is written such that it imparts empathy for those whose stories are told within the pages of this book and for the reader, who may see themselves or their own experiences reflected in these stories. This book brought me to new insights and understanding of the Christian Science experience. I am grateful to those who shared their hearts with us in the stories of this book, giving understanding, validation and hope to those who have been impacted by Christian Science.” Amazon Reviewer, Mady
A new person reached out to me who was questioning CS. He was reading Leaving Christian Science as he was questioning resigning his CS membership. Your book was instrumental as he was making this decision to take the next step and resign. It confirmed the wrestling of his heart. Praise God!” -Katherine Beim-Esche, FFCS Director
I left Christian Science 45 years ago yet only found out recently that remnants of CS were still lingering with me. Christian Science has a unique vocabulary. Many words and phrases have been redefined by its founder Mary Baker Eddy. The Foreword, Introduction, and all the Appendices in this book are very helpful with understanding all this deception. This is not a book that bashes a false religion, but one that gives hope to the reader.” -Amazon Reviewer
I have been a Christian for many years now, but it wasn’t until some years later I realized the personal issues of self-care, boundaries, and medical care were remnants that still needed addressing. This wonderful book can be a help to many dealing with all these issues (as relates to CS false views). -Amazon Reviewer
Reading Lauren Hunter’s well-written book would be helpful to those wondering what Christian Science is all about, as well as those who are wondering if they are in an unhealthy religion. It also shows what a healthy religion is all about with the ‘Pastor’s Point’ at the end of each story. I grieved with the writers of each story as they shared their struggles of leaving a religion that was a total part of their everyday life. I also felt their joy when they found the courage to untangle this deceptive religion from their lives. I also greatly appreciated the ‘Personal Reflections’ with each chapter.” Amazon Reviewer, Gayle
For me, your book provides a resource to send to former and non-Christian Scientists. It is a fantastic starting point for conversation and for deepening conversation. The person’s response to the book helps me gauge where they are in their journey.” -Katherine Beim-Esche, FFCS Director
Leaving Christian Science – It’s Not Over
As with any book, time will increase the book’s reach as more people share this resource with others they care about, as readers post more Amazon reviews (these are worth gold to the writer and help boost the visibility of the book page to other potential readers), and as God allows.
Please consider purchasing an extra book to share with a Christian Science family member who hasn’t left yet. Lastly, please pray that more Christian Scientists would be freed from this false belief system in order to find true freedom that only Jesus can provide.
Recent Press for Leaving Christan Science
- Leaving a Cult Podcast Interview, Genuine Life Recovery Podcast [interview]
- ‘Write the Vision, Make it Plain,’ Ananaias.org [article]
- Emerging Author YouTube Video, Writing for Your Life [interview]
- Spiritually Advised Neglect Podcast Interview, IndoctriNATION Podcast [interview]
- Book Launch Video Interview with Katie Beim-Esche, Director of Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists
Other Recent Articles I’ve Written Related to the Former Christian Science Experience
- The Significance of the Blood of Jesus, Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists Ministry
- Elitism and Superiority in Christian Science for ExChristianScience.com
- Breaking Free from the Power of Christian Science Hymns, Fellowship of Former Christian Scientists Ministry
Lauren Hunter is a writer who loves the big picture of God’s journey we are all on together. Married to her high school sweetheart, Lauren lives in Northern California with her husband and their four children. Her latest book is Leaving Christian Science: 10 Stories of New Faith in Jesus Christ.