By Ruth Cook
I was raised in a Christian Science family and spent many years serving as a Christian Science nurse. I joined the Church in 1964, entered Christian Science nurses training in 1965, and took “class instruction” in 1967. I began working in a Christian Science nursing home in 1968, obtaining my Christian Science Journal listing in 1972 and working for Christian Science nursing homes (now called sanatoriums) and Visiting Nurses services throughout the United States for over thirty years. I attended annual Christian Science Association meetings until 1993 and retained my Journal listing until 1994.
My brother Ed and I were third generation Christian Scientists. Ed left Christian Science in 1960, soon after graduating from high school. Unlike most Christian Science families, my dad (who is still a Christian Scientist), brother, and I used to spending hours debating Christian Science and Christianity. I feel the Lord used these discussions and my occasional visits to Ed’s Christian church as tools to prepare the way for my exit from Christian Science. I came to know Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior on July 25, 1992, while attending a Harvest Crusade with my brother in San Diego, California. The next day Lester Crawford – a retired preacher and my future husband – baptized me in the Colorado River at Yuma, Arizona. Praise the Lord!
After I accepted Christ as my Savior, the Lord took a year and a half to “prepare a table” (Psalm 23), at which time I left Christian Science nursing completely. In 1993 I asked the Lord for help; I told Him that, if it were time for me to get out of Christian Science nursing, then my needs would include a new job, new friends and new church. I was willing to do whatever it was going to take to start this new life.
The Lord is faithful! As I took college admissions tests, He literally answered many of the questions, particularly on the math section. Please understand that I only have basic math skills – no algebra or higher math – yet I scored higher in the math section of the test than on the English section. This opened the door for me to begin college for the first time.
The classes I was lead to take prepared me to become an Activity Director for medical convalescent homes. I stopped Christian Science nursing on January 23, 1994, and immediately thereafter the Lord provided a job as an Activity Director for an Alzheimer’s convalescent hospital.
God has shown His sense of humor by keeping me in college and providing the necessary classes for a degree in psychology. I graduated with an AA in Behavioral and Social Sciences and received a BS in Human Development, in 1998, from Christian Heritage College. I am presently earning my Masters degree in Counseling from Chapman University. The Lord has helped me overcome learning disabilities and has given me the courage to witness to others at school about His faithfulness.
I became involved with the Christian Way ministry because of my desire to find other former Christian Scientists who are now born again Christians. I first connected with Christian Way in 1994 after hearing of it on the Bible Answer Man radio program. I contacted Christian Way’s founder Carolyn Poole, and had the privilege of visiting her and talking with her many times by phone. I don’t feel alone anymore, because Christian Way has provided me a new way of making friends whose backgrounds and experiences are similar to mine.
The Lord has prompted me to write Christian poems and Bible-based articles directed to those in Christian Science. I am also interested in Children’s Healthcare Is a Legal Duty, Inc., because that organization is actively thwarting the Christian Science Church’s stranglehold on legislative exemptions in the areas of childcare and Christian Science sanitariums that receive Medicare and Medicaid. I am in awe of the Lord’s methods of closing the doors of Christian Science.
I currently attend a non-denominational Bible-teaching church and have a personal relationship and newfound peace with our Lord God. I live in Tucson, Arizona, and am a mother, grandmother, and a full-time employee for a roadside assistance company.
[Ruth (Welch, Mc Intire, Brattkus, Brougher, Crawford) Cook, written in 1997 and updated in 2002. Ruth’s previous marital names are included because some of the people reading her testimony may have known her by one of those names.]