Church loses battle in Christian Science trust case

A Christian Science church in Australia cannot sue trusts created following the 1910 death of Christian Science movement founder Mary Baker Eddy, New Hampshire’s highest court ruled Friday.

The state Supreme Court ruled that the Second Church of Christ, Scientist in Melbourne lacked authority to object to the accounting of the trusts.

The trusts are overseen by the board of directors of the First Church of Christ, Scientist in Boston, also known as the Mother Church.

The Australian church wanted a probate judge to appoint an independent trustee. It argued that because the trustees also are the board of directors of the Mother Church, they have a conflict of interest.

The court, in its unanimous opinion, upheld the judge’s ruling that the Australian church lacked standing regarding enforcement of the trust.

It noted the judge “acknowledged the embedded conflict” and imposed conditions, including that the trustees provide the state attorney general’s charitable trusts division a schedule of distribution recipients.

New Hampshire-born Baker Eddy’s trusts are filed in state probate court.

One left money “for the purpose of providing free instruction for indigent, well educated, worthy Christian Scientists.”

The other covers Mother Church repairs and “promoting and extending” the religion of Christian Science.

Baker Eddy published books and magazines on spiritual healing and founded the Pulitzer Prize-winning Christian Science Monitor.

Donate 

Help Keep The Faith deliver hope to global Christians during the coronavirus period

For 15 years, Keep The Faith's team of volunteers have provided our Christian journalism for free, and kept it open for everyone.

The coronavirus disease is affecting all global communities. Christians and people of faith all over the world are looking to our faith for answers during these troubling times. As more people fall ill with Covid-19 or go into self-quarantine over the next few days, we expect our visitors to grow even further.

Your gifts are so important to our future, and any donation will help. 100% of your gifts will be used to continue providing our services for free to help those who are in need of God's Word during these difficult times.

So please, continue to support us and everyone looking for hope. Partner with us in this journey together.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *