Eddy's machine has turned out goods that could outwear those great heart-stirrers, without the assistance of the lash. "O'er Waiting Harpstrings of the Mind" is pretty good, quite fair to middling--the whole seven of the stanzas--but repetition would be certain to take the excitement out of it in the course of time, even if there were fourteen, and then it would sound like the multiplication table, and would cease to save. The congregation would be perfectly sure to get tired; in fact, did get tired--hence the compulsory By-law. It is a measure born of experience, not foresight.
The By-laws say that "if a solo singer shall neglect or refuse to sing alone" one of those three hymns as often as once a month, and oftener if so directed by the Board of Directors--which is Mrs. Eddy--the singer's salary shall be stopped. It is circumstantial evidence that some soloists neglected this sacrament and others refused it. At least that is the charitable view to take of it. There is only one other view to take: that Mrs. Eddy did really foresee that there would be singers who would some day get tired of doing her hymns and proclaiming the authorship, unless persuaded by a Bylaw, with a penalty attached. The idea could of course occur to her wise head, for she would know that a seven-stanza break might well be a calamitous strain upon a soloist, and that he might therefore avoid it if unwatched. He could not curtail it, for the whole of anything that Mrs. Eddy does is sacred, and cannot be cut.
BOARD OF EDUCATION
It consists of four members, one of whom is President of it. Its members are elected annually. Subject to Mrs. Eddy's approval. Art. XXX., Sec. 2.
She owns the Board--is the Board.
Mrs. Eddy is President of the Metaphysical College. If at any time she shall vacate that office, the Directors of the College (that is to say, Mrs. Eddy) "shall" elect to the vacancy the President of the Board of Education (which is merely re-electing herself).
It is another case of "Pastor Emeritus." She gives up the shadow of authority, but keeps a good firm hold on the substance.
Applicants for admission to this industry must pass a thorough three days' examination before the Board of Education "in Science and Health, chapter on 'Recapitulation'; the Platform of Christian Science; page 403 of Christian Science Practice, from line second to the second paragraph of page 405; and page 488, second and third paragraphs."
BOARD OF LECTURESHIP
The lecturers are exceedingly important servants of Mrs. Eddy, and she chooses them with great care. Each of them has an appointed territory in which to perform his duties--in the North, the South, the East, the West, in Canada, in Great Britain, and so on--and each must stick to his own territory and not forage beyond its boundaries. I think it goes without saying--from what we have seen of Mrs. Eddy--that no lecture is delivered until she has examined and approved it, and that the lecturer is not allowed to change it afterwards.
The members of the Board of Lectureship are elected annually--
"Subject to the approval of Rev. Mary Baker G. Eddy."
There are but four. They are elected--like the rest of the domestics-- annually. So far as I can discover, not a single servant of the Sacred Household has a steady job except Mrs. Eddy. It is plain that she trusts no human being but herself.
The branch Churches are strictly forbidden to use them.
So far as I can see, they could not do it if they wanted to. The By-laws are merely the voice of the master issuing commands to the servants. There is nothing and nobody for the servants to re-utter them to.
That useless edict is repeated in the little book, a few pages farther on. There are several other repetitions of prohibitions in the book that could be spared-they only take up room for nothing.
THE CREED It is copyrighted. I do not know why, but I suppose it is to keep adventurers from some day claiming that they invented it, and not Mrs. Eddy and that "strange Providence" that has suggested so many clever things to her.