The Christian Science Board of Directors has elected Nathan Talbot of Boise, Idaho, as a new member.
Mr. Talbot succeeds Mary Weldon Ridgway, who has served on the board since 2001 and resigned to return to her Christian Science practice and teaching in Dallas. In announcing her resignation, Mrs. Ridgway explained that an eyesight problem "makes it difficult for me to do my job effectively." Virginia Harris, chairman of the board, said, "We reluctantly accepted Mary's resignation and respect and support her decision."
In announcing the change, the board said it expects 2004 to be a "defining year for our movement and for humanity." The board said that "progressive steps and significant achievements" have marked the past decade and that the year ahead will signal "the beginning of the next century for Christian Science. This century is not so much about calendar change, as it is about a change in mental vigor, outlook, and response."
Talbot said of his election to the board: "This is such a special time to serve the cause of Christian Science. Some years are ordinary, but not 2004. This year provides the unique opportunity for a fresh and inspired response to society's spiritual search."
His comment echoed a sentiment expressed in Ridgway's resignation letter, in which she wrote, "This is a momentous time for progress - for Christian Science and its healing impact in the world."
Talbot has been a Christian Science teacher and healer for nearly three decades. Before joining the board, effective Jan. 23, he served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Christian Science Publishing Society, which is publisher of The Christian Science Monitor.
Talbot has held a number of posts in the service of Christian Science, including executive editor and associate editor of the Publishing Society's religious periodicals, lecturer, vice president and teacher of the Board of Education (which trains new Christian Science teachers), and manager of the Committees on Publication (the church's public affairs arm). Talbot, who is an avid outdoorsman, and his wife, Margie, plan to relocate to Boston in the coming months.
Replacing Talbot on the Board of Trustees will be Don Adams of Houston. Mr. Adams has worked in sales and marketing in the corporate world and became a Christian Science practitioner, or healer, in 1998. Mr. Adams is a frequent contributor of prose and poetry to the Christian Science religious periodicals.