Mary Epley Gross, C.S.B.

Portrait by LM. Gaugengigl. Original Longyear Collection.


MARY EPLEY GROSS of Pennsylvania was a teenager when she joined the Lutheran church, the denomination in which she had been raised. She remained a devoted member until she became interested in Christian Science. In the early 1880s, her parents moved to Knoxville, Illinois, and in 1886 Mary first heard of this new religion from a Christian Scientist who had been sent to Knoxville to heal the sick. She attended the meetings conducted by this visitor and was so deeply impressed by the love and kindness expressed that she began to study Science and Health. In 1887, after taking Primary class instruction with Mrs. Eddy’s student Janet Colman in Beatrice, Nebraska, Mary moved to Leithsburg, Illinois, and soon had a busy healing practice. After her marriage to Willis F. Gross, the newlyweds moved to Wichita, Kansas, where they continued to practice Christian Science healing. In 1899, they moved to Boston when Mr. Gross was called to assist Judge Septimus Hanna and his wife, Camilla Hanna, the editors of the Christian Science periodicals. That same year, Mr. and Mrs. Gross took Normal class together, each receiving the degree of C.S.B.

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