Santa Fe CSL is a spiritual community, living and growing through love, creativity, and service.
The “Science of Mind and Spirit” movement embraced by the Centers for Spiritual Living was founded by New Thought leader Ernest Holmes as a philosophy – not a religion – to affirm our Divine essence. We welcome people from all spiritual traditions and paths to celebrate Spirit in our lives and to join together in fellowship. We are an inclusive, welcoming community with gay and lesbian members, Buddhists, Christians, agnostics and spiritually curious attendees as well. Whatever your beliefs, come explore your spirituality and connection to the Divine within a safe, accepting community.
The Santa Fe Center for Spiritual Living is a member of the Centers for Spiritual Living, formerly United Church of Religious Science. Visit http://www.csl.org for information about our parent organization and the Global Heart Vision.
Santa Fe CSL History
Our Center had a humble beginning in the early 1960s. Dick Gregory, a self promoting salesman, was invited to attend a seminar about the Science of Mind in 1945. He became enthralled with the philosophy that Dr. Ernest Holmes was teaching throughout the country. When he moved to Santa Fe in the 1950s, he started distributing copies of the Science of Mind magazine, which was the only means that articulated the philosophy. By 1960, the distribution from a small downtown bookstore, had reached 100 per month. At that time, an organization that chartered Science of Mind churches did not exist.
The readership of the magazine created enough interest for a discussion group that started in the early 1960s. The group, of about 16 members, had meetings at the downtown First National Bank and discussed the early publications that were distributed by the Science of Mind Institute, based in Los Angeles, California. In 1965, Dr. Robert Stevens, an ordained minister by Dr. Holmes, was invited to come to Santa Fe and instruct the study group. The group reached church status in 1967, and it became the Santa Fe Religious Science Church. It affiliated with the United Church of Religious Science, the new name for the Science of Mind Institute.
Santa Fe CSL’s Past Ministers
Subsequent ministers served the group. These included Rev. Martha Stewart (the first female minister to open a New Mexico legislative session with an invocation,) Rev. Ken Aiber, Dr. Corky Corlis, and others. The group met at different homes until 1973 when it held Sunday services at the Odd Fellows Hall on Cerrillos Road. At the time, it raised enough funds to purchase a mobile home and parked it near Siringo road. It was capable of housing 50 people. When it outgrew that space, it moved the Sunday services to the Women’s Club on Old Pecos Trail.
In the 1980s the Rev. Carol Bell Night, though not an official Religious Science minister, served the group for several years and became very popular in town. During her tenure, the group started to raise funds for the purchase of its own facility. The Rev. Nancy Herrick was minister when the group moved from the Women’s Club to the current domicile in Camino de los Marquez.
During Rev. Herrick’s tenure, there was an expansion of attendance and income. The group, now a well established community, rented half of the facility and negotiated with the owner to remodel the other half into offices and classrooms. It also raised sufficient funds to purchase eight acres of vacant land off Richards Avenue near the Community College. The land was sold in order to acquire the Marquez property in 1995.
Our Current Minister
The Rev. Dr. Bernardo Monserrat, our current minister, took leadership in 1990. Since then, a children’s playground area was built in 1992 and the sanctuary was restructured in 1993. The easement across the street was landscaped with the cooperation of the mall’s owners and the City of Santa Fe. The building’s front area was transformed into a patio/garden in 2000, and the inside was remodeled in 2005. The façade was redone in 2009, shortly after the name had been changed to Center for Spiritual Living of Santa Fe.