Winter 2010 Newsletter
Links of Love: e-News from High Ridge House









A Call to Action

A Call To Action

Dear Reader,

In "The Joy of Christian Science Nursing" article in this issue, you'll read about two wonderful healings—only two of the many witnessed by our Christian Science nurses. These add to the proof that Christian Science heals. And healings large and small are taking place at High Ridge House every day.

Yet during the recent debates about healthcare reform, questions were raised about spiritual means of care. In mortal belief, healing occurs because of medical intervention. But as we read in Science and Health, "If God heals not the sick, they are not healed, for no lesser power equals the infinite All-power; but God, Truth, Life, Love, does heal the sick through the prayer of the righteous." (231: 8-11) At High Ridge House and other Christian Science nursing facilities, we fully support this righteous and effective prayer—and we see the results.

Christian Science nurses stand on the frontlines of the struggle between spiritual and matter-based forms of care and therefore fulfill a unique role in the world. I ask for your prayerful support for Christian Science nursing and Christian Science nursing facilities, including High Ridge House—our God-centered, joy-filled sanctuary. We want to continue being a beacon to the world that Christian Science heals—right here in the greater New York City area!

I hope you find this issue of "Links of Love" inspiring. Your comments are welcome at any time. Please send them to me at admin@highridgehouse.org. Many thanks!

Kevin Massey, Executive Director

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The Joy of Christian Science Nursing

Services

The Christian Science Sentinel devoted its entire issue of October 24, 2005, to what it means to be a Christian Science nurse. We found that issue so enlightening that from time to time we’d like to give our Christian Science nurses at High Ridge House an opportunity to share their own perspective on the subject. In this article, we’ll hear from Suzanne Lovins, who has been a Christian Science nurse since 1979 and Journal-listed since 1987, and Rae Foster, who has been a Christian Science nurse since 1980 and Journal-listed since 1988.

When did you realize that you wanted to be a Christian Science nurse?

Suzanne: When I was a teenager, I severely damaged three of my toes in an accident at home. With the help of a Christian Science nurse and a Christian Science practitioner, my foot was totally restored 11 days later. In fact, I danced en pointe at a ballet recital in Cincinnati! This incredible healing made a deep impression on me. I knew from that point on that I wanted to be a Christian Science nurse.

Rae: I was divorced, with four children who were kind of going bananas. It was during this time that I applied for and was accepted for the Nurse’s Aide training course at Tenacre, the Christian Science nursing facility in Princeton, NJ. I thought to myself, "If all I learn to do is pray more effectively, there isn’t anything better I could do for myself or for my children." After finishing that course, I took the rest of the Christian Science nurse training and worked at Tenacre for 10 years. In the process, my children’s lives changed for the better, and so did mine.

How do you metaphysically prepare to meet a new patient?

Suzanne: I find that upon awakening, the day is shaped by that moment’s thought. Since it is of God, it’s spiritually strengthening, and then the entire day unfolds as God has planned it. I’d like to add that I genuinely see each patient as a gift from God for that day.

Rae: It depends on the patient and the situation. What is the need? What do I need to see and understand spiritually? I focus on God—especially the power of God. Often the claim seems to be that the power of God is lacking. And that is obviously never true!

Sometimes when helping a patient, you may be faced with "the jarring testimony of the material senses," to use Mrs. Eddy’s term. How do you remain undisturbed as a Christian Science nurse in those situations?

Suzanne: Sometimes it takes a whole lot to gain my spiritual equilibrium! In that moment of confrontation, you walk in and are hit with an ugly picture. In the next moment, you realize you're bringing this sense of compassion and tenderness and love to fulfill your purpose as a Christian Science nurse. Then comes the realization: "Oh, that WAS a dream! It was never real."

Rae: I spend at least 90% of my off time in prayer and study to deepen my understanding of Christian Science, God, man, and the universe. It takes a conscious commitment to know the meaning of what Mrs. Eddy tells us in S&H: "The Christlike understanding of scientific being and divine healing includes a perfect Principle and idea, — perfect God and perfect man, — as the basis of thought and demonstration." (259: 11-14) When I go on the nursing floor, it’s always with the conviction that perfect God and perfect man is all there is or can be. Then I strive to uplift the patient's thought as much as possible, knowing that God is doing the work.

Sometimes the work of a Christian Science nurse can be very demanding. What has been a challenge for you?

Suzanne: Believe it or not, it’s getting Christian Scientists to fill out their advance directives paperwork, such as a living will or health care proxy. This is important for everybody, but particularly if you want to opt out of specific medical procedures because of your choice to use Christian Science treatment. [Editor’s note: High Ridge House is scheduling workshops on this topic for the Christian Science community and will be pleased to offer one in your area. Click here to find out more.]

Rae: I find the biggest challenge is working with patients who are frustrated and angry when they haven't experienced healing yet. They seem to expect the Christian Science nurse to physically fix the problem. But, as we read in Miscellany, it is "neither man nor materia medica, but God, [who] heals and saves mankind." (348: 15-16) I tell my patients that I'm always supporting them in truth—seeing them as they truly are, the perfect child of God. I also encourage them to stay in close contact with their Christian Science practitioner. And I remind them that Love is an omnipotent power.

Do you ever encounter resistance to Christian Science among family members while assisting a Christian Scientist in the home who requested help?

Suzanne: I once had a case involving a patient who had three daughters—a class-taught Christian Scientist, a Zen Buddhist, and a Scientologist. Each of the daughters was an exceptionally fine example of “honoring your mother,” and I felt privileged to witness their love. As we worked to know the truth in Christian Science, the patient began to heal. But it didn’t stop there: an estrangement that had kept the patient’s daughters apart was healed. And there was even healing in the patient’s community, which was an area with many crack dealers and users. I heard later that the police claimed the crack money as profits from the drug trade, and for that reason the houses were able to be auctioned off to families who would appreciate them. The people who bought them restored them and planted trees and flowers. In other words, the neighborhood was also transformed. This was one of my most delightful cases.

Rae: The patient had discolored, foul-smelling skin on her foot and had been working on a healing for months. When I was called on the case, I discovered that she had been painting a very rosy picture for her practitioner the whole time. So I sat down and wrote a note to the practitioner, which he told me he was very grateful to receive. That's when he urged the family to withdraw so that he and I could focus on the metaphysical work to be done. I remember walking the floor of the patient’s home and reading the Bible Lesson aloud over and over for two or three days. Suddenly the patient said, "I heard in my thought, 'Will the real __ (her name) __ stand up?'" And within a few days the affected skin on her foot was gone and new flesh began to appear. I should add that family members, who were a bit upset about being asked to leave, were very pleased and grateful for this wonderful healing.

What is your greatest satisfaction in being a Christian Science nurse?

Suzanne: Being there for the community 24/7 and living my love.

Rae: I've found a way in which I can be an expression of church, as defined in Science and Health—"the structure of Truth and Love; whatever rests upon and proceeds from divine Principle." God is my everything—my home.



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Volunteering on a Special Day

Services

Reading the President's Proclamation was a lovely part of HRH's 2009 Thanksgiving Day service for Reader Jennette Gregory. "I had decided to spend a couple of days of Rest and Study at High Ridge, and since I was going to be there, I was asked to read for the afternoon service that day. What a wonderful opportunity to give something back to a place I consider a healing sanctuary!"

A resident of Brooklyn, Jennette is happy to make the trip to High Ridge House to volunteer as a Reader at the 3:00 p.m. Wednesday or Sunday service. "I don't have to pressure myself. In fact, I take the 'me' out of the process entirely," she says. "I'm God's instrument, and I just let myself be guided, and the theme unfolds. That's why being a Reader is never a job. It’s a joy."

If you'd like to be a Reader for one of our services, please contact Barbara Phillips at 718-796-4200, ext. 203, or info@highridgehouse.org. Barbara can tell you about other volunteer opportunities at HRH as well.

Services

Four reasons why the 2009 Christmas party at High Ridge House was such a great success: (From left) Hattie Bond, Kitchen Manager, and her staff—Keith Miller, Serbrina Watson, and Tramal Johnson—worked hard for days to make sure guests were well fed. In addition to a delicious buffet and assorted desserts, the more than 80 guests enjoyed a program featuring lovely music, inspiring readings, a loving tribute to former HRH Board members, and joyous caroling.


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"Give us grace for to-day"

Services

Mrs. Eddy's interpretation of the line from the Lord’s Prayer, referring to "daily bread," is such a promise and assurance! (S&H: 17:5) It tells us of an ever-present supply of whatever our need is. It refutes the sense that sometimes grace comes in basketfuls and sometimes not at all. Grace always comes from God as He shows us a plan that we could not have figured out for ourselves.

This is the second year of Abounding Grace, The Campaign for High Ridge House. It is a rich theme, and I hope you have seen a bit more grace in your life as we have shared some of the qualities of grace in our previous mailings. I know I have. Even when I have not prayed specifically using the idea of grace, healings over the past year have resulted in seeing God’s grace expressed in ways I could not have planned. These included grace-filled healings of grief from the passing of loved ones, of challenges at work or home, and of physical illnesses. Grace saved the day each time!

High Ridge House, the Christian Science nursing facility serving the broad New York metropolitan area, expresses grace and welcomes grace. We ask for your sustaining financial support as we remain open and ready to:

  • Meet the daily need for Christian Science nursing care
  • Welcome Christian Scientists to our prayer-filled sanctuary for Rest and Study or just to spend the day in a serene, uplifting atmosphere
  • Provide supportive Christian Science nursing services in the home


As we go forward this year, we are also exploring residential options for Christian Scientists at High Ridge House, and we would love to hear your thoughts about that need! Please feel free to contact me at development@highridgehouse.org.

Please see the next section for ideas on how to give. And thank you for your support today!

Lynn Meyerson
Development Director
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Many Ways to Give—Today and Tomorrow

In addition to making financial contributions by check or credit card, here are some other ways you can support High Ridge House. All will help us continue to be a beacon to the world that Christian Science heals.

Regular Monthly Contributions by Credit Card

If you'd like to support High Ridge House financially on an ongoing basis, but prefer to spread your gift throughout the year, the process can be automated by using a credit card, which makes it easy for all. Monthly contributions of any amount are most welcome.

Pledges

Similar to regular monthly contributions, pledges are a promise to make a gift to High Ridge House in installments—by check or credit card—with each installment deductible in the year given. The difference is that pledges are for a defined period of months or years and don’t have to be made monthly.

Planned Gifts

A planned gift can take many forms, including a bequest, life insurance policy, Charitable Remainder Trust, Charitable Lead Trust, the remainder of a bank or investment account, or real estate. Planned gifts make it possible to take advantage of various tax benefits while meeting your family’s needs at the same time.

Securities

Shares of stock, bonds, and mutual funds are also welcome gifts—whether in certificate form or transferred electronically. They’re credited to the contributor at their fair market value on the date of transfer to High Ridge House. For more information about giving securities, please call our Development Office—718-796-4200, ext. 258.

Tribute Gifts

Would you like to honor a family member, friend, Christian Science teacher, or Christian Science practitioner? A gift to High Ridge House is a lovely way to recognize individuals who have been an important part of your life. At the same time, you’ll be supporting the Christian Science movement and its emphasis on spiritual healing.

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Space for Grace: Rest and Study Guests Welcomed Over the Holidays

Rest and Study at High Ridge House

Dozens of Christian Scientists from the Tri-State area gladly accepted our offer for up to two days of Rest and Study at High Ridge House in December and January, without charge. It was our Christmas gift to the Christian Science community.

We wanted to give people an opportunity to visit us and find out how uplifting it can be to quietly ponder the truths of Christian Science in our tranquil setting at a special time of year. Judging by the comments on the appraisal forms, these visits were much appreciated! Here are some of the notes we received:

“I cannot imagine a more productive and enjoyable Christmas holiday. Though my schedule prevents me from participating in many activities sponsored by High Ridge House, I’m extremely glad I could participate in this Rest and Study. The staff demonstrates LOVE, JOY, and an enormous amount of kindness.”

“Thank you for your kind invitation. I enjoyed a wonderful peaceful healing time.”

“Everyone was wonderful. I felt so cared for and special. Thank you and love to you all.”

“Please pass on this contribution to help others: visitors, staff or whomever. I have found my free Rest and Study enriching. Thanks for the opportunity. It was much appreciated.”

Have you experienced the joy of Rest and Study at High Ridge house? We love having previous guests back for more! And we welcome newcomers with open arms to our sanctuary for healing and renewal.

To make a reservation for Rest and Study, or to schedule a date for our Day Guest program, please call 718-796-4200, ext. 204. The Rest and Study coordinator will be happy to provide details, including rates.

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Christian Science Home Nursing and Rates for 2010

High Ridge House Home Nursing

Providing Christian Science nursing services in the home is an important part of the mission of High Ridge House.

Prayerfully considering ways to better serve our community, we were led last year to suspend charging for our Home Nursing services. Even though finances appeared tight, we felt in our hearts that this was the right step at that time. One dear supporter wrote us that at first she was surprised by this change, but on further reflection saw that, like the widow giving her mite, HRH was giving of what it had and providing a model of generosity.

In a similar way, we were led to offer free Rest and Study nights in December and January to those attending area branch churches. This also came about through prayer and was extremely well received.

Through prayer, we were led to resume charging for our Home Nursing services, beginning January 1, 2010. The charges remain modest ($45/hour + transportation), and the care is priceless. As in years past, we continue to provide the initial hour for free*. You or a loved one may call the Christian Science Home Nursing Coordinator anytime at 718-796-4200, ext. 285, to learn more about this loving service for our community.

If you would like to help support this wonderful work, you may make a contribution on our website by specifying the "Home Nursing" fund.

*All rates for others services remain at the levels set in January 2009.


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Let Your Wishes Be Known—In Writing, in Advance

Let Your Wishes Be Known In Writing In Advance

Living wills, health care proxies, and durable powers of attorney are examples of advance directives. Completing and signing advance directives paperwork will help ensure that your health care wishes are known and respected. To schedule a workshop on the subject for family members and friends—in your home or church or here at High Ridge House—contact Lynn Meyerson at 718-796-4200, ext. 258, or lmeyerson@highridgehouse.org.

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Services

Upcoming Event:


"Making Your Health Care Choices Known: A Workshop with a Spiritual Perspective"


3 p.m., Sunday,
February 28, 2010



Presented by High Ridge House at First Church of Christ, Scientist, Darien, CT, 2331 Post Road

Click here for more details.




Download Past Newsletters:

Sept 2010

June 2010

Fall 2009

Spring 2009

Summer 2008

Winter 2006

Summer 2004

Fall 2003

Fall 2002



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