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First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Ottawa

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In 1879, Mary Baker Eddy founded The Church of Christ, Scientist "to commemorate the word and works of our Master, which should reinstate primitive Christianity and its lost element of healing. (Church Manual)" First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Ottawa, like all Christian Science churches around the world, is a branch of The Mother Church, The First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Boston, Massachusetts. Every branch church has its own distinct democratic government. An Executive Board is elected from the membership, and committees are appointed to carry out the activities of the church.

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The seeds of this church were planted in 1888 when several local residents, after earnest prayer to God for healing, were healed by Christian Scientists. In the 1890s, the Christian Science community of Ottawa faced many challenges. Although the new students and converts were enthusiastic, they were working somewhat in the dark. The whole movement was evolving out of old theological thought. A focus on God rather than persons was required. Also, better organization was needed in line with the evolving Manual of The Mother Church written by the church Founder and Leader, Mary Baker Eddy.

We are here today because the church workers over the past century focussed on this light and demonstrated its healing power.

Thus it was that a group of Christian Scientists met December 26, 1899, to formally organize the First Church of Christ, Scientist, in Ottawa. In the minutes of that important meeting we read this verse from Isaiah: "The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined" (9:2).

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Espionage in Canada and Western Countries: Part One , Two and Three

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A number of schemes for a new building were put forward, but a building in the Classic Italian Style was decided upon, using Ohio Sandstone, which was described as "the most durable and preserves its colour best of all the available stones." Ohio Sandstone ashlar would face walls, pillars, pilasters, and pedestals. Canadian Art Stone would be used for moulded work, cornices, and capitals. This stone "so nearly imitates the Ohio Sandstone as to be practically undetectable while its durable qualities are similar." Foundations on front and sides would be covered by a native limestone ashlar. The back foundation would be the best selected rubble stone. The front steps would also be native limestone, "sawn and bushed." Windows would be of cathedral glass. The inside finish would be the same as in Union Station (present Conference Centre), which opened in 1912, and the floor would be of softwood covered with cork carpet.

Work began on the site with the demolition of the existing dwelling in early April 1913. The new foundation was finished and work began on the superstructure early in June, with the laying of the cornerstone in the northeast corner of the church at 5:30 a.m. on July 14, 1913. Several items were placed in a copper box in the stone. The church finally had its first service on February 22, 1914, and was dedicated free of debt on March 23, 1919.

A 1994 newspaper article on church architecture in the city described the church edifice as "a defiant monument to classical enlightenment amid the ubiquitous Gothic revival spires" (John Ibbitson, Citizen, Sept. 3, 1994). Ibbitson noted that older architecture of 19th century Ottawa belongs to the Gothic revival period, and quoted Caroline Guay, an architectural technologist, as saying that this church edifice represents "one of the best examples of Palladian revival in the city." According to Ibbitson, "The Gothic revival movement sought to emulate the medieval;... the neoclassical (or Palladian revival) sought to celebrate ancient Rome and Greece."


The Origin and the Sources

M.T. Al-Mansouri, Ph.D.

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Church services

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288 Metcalfe Street, Ottawa (at Gilmour)

Sunday services: 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

Sunday services are conducted by two Readers, elected by and from the membership.

The Lesson-Sermon is made up of selections from the Bible and correlative selections

from the Christian Science textbook, Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by

Mary Baker Eddy.

The references for the Lesson-Sermon are listed in the Christian Science Quarterly so that the lesson may be studied during the week preceding the Sunday service. You can become acquainted with the weekly Bible Lesson by tuning in to Vision TV or shortwave radio; for further information please enquire at the church or Reading Room.

Sunday School: 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.

Sunday School classes for young people under the age of 20 are conducted at the same time as the Sunday service. Students are taught the healing truths of the Bible which they can apply in their daily lives.

Wednesday meetings: 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.

Wednesday meetings, conducted by the First Reader, include testimonies by members of the congregation explaining how they have been healed of sickness and helped with problems of all kinds, including those of unemployment, housing, and personal relationships, through the application of Christian Science.

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Child care services

Younger children and infants are looked after in the Children's room during all church services.

About Christian Science Lectures

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The church holds one or more lectures each year.

Our most recent lecture was held on Saturday, November 28, 2009

Safe from Contagion

by Marceil Delacy

View a video of this talk and other lectures

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Reading Room


The Reading Room is open:

Monday to Friday
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
10 a.m. - 4 p.m

The Christian Science Reading Room is a spiritual discovery resource centre. It provides a comfortable and healing environment for spiritual research, discovery and discussion. Here you will find a variety of Bible study aids for all ages including the ground-breaking book Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy.

The Christian Science Monitor, a Pulitzer prize winning International newspaper, magazines in various languages that explore practical healing ideas, children's books, and a weekly Bible study guide are also available.

A computerized concordance is available to help search the Bible, Mary Baker Eddy's published works as well as over 100 years of documented healing through the teachings of Christian Science.

The Reading Room also offers free access to the Internet to explore, (voted best on-line community 2002 by the Massachusetts Interactive Media Council), as well as through the on-site computer.

Share Science and Health with the community

The Reading Room has an ongoing sale offer "3 for the price of 2" special for any paperback edition of Science and Health, including the translations.


The Christian Science Reading Room for the Ottawa community is located at 141 C Laurier Avenue West (near Elgin). For your convenience, VISA and MasterCard are now accepted for Reading Room purchases.

For more information

Call 613-232-0748 or e-mail us at

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If you need help, Christian Science practitioners are ready to assist through prayer. The names, addresses and telephone numbers of practitioners in Ottawa, as well as those around the world, are published in The Christian Science Journal, a monthly periodical available at the Reading Room. Practitioners are experienced Christian Scientists who devote themselves full-time to the healing ministry on a professional basis.

Under the authority of the Church Manual, practitioners do make a charge for their professional services, and Journal-listed practitioners are not permitted to have any other income-earning profession (except within the church itself).

Sandra Balderston CS office: 613-726-3679

Lyle Young CSB office: 613-741-0039

For more about Christian Science practitioners visit :
Worldwide Practionners Directory.

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Christian Science Nursing services

A person who is receiving Christian Science help, but needs special care during the course of a healing, may call for the services of a Christian Science nurse. The Christian Science Journal provides a directory of nurses qualified to provide this care, which may include personal care, nourishment, mobility assistance and bandaging.
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A .pdf brochure is available which describes assistance provided in Eastern Ontario by Concord Lodge.

Sharon House provides services in the Toronto area

About Christian Science Nursing.

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Committee on Publication

It is the duty of the Committee on Publication to correct in a Christian manner impositions on the public in regard to Christian Science, injustices done Mrs. Eddy or members of this Church by the daily press, by periodicals or circulated literature of any sort. The Committee on Publication is responsible for correcting or having corrected a false newspaper article which has not been replied to by other Scientists, or which has been forwarded to the Committee for the purpose of having him reply to it.

Committees on Publication Directory

Other links of interest

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The Mother Church

The Christian Science Monitor

Christian Science in Ontario, Canada

First Church of Christ, Scientist, Winnipeg

Christian Science in Alberta, Canada

Christian Science in British Columbia, Canada


Hearing assist devices are available, and the church is equiped with a T-loop hearing system.

Elevator access is available at 365 Lewis St

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