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Organization of International Religious Science and Centers for Spiritual Living unite and move

International Centers for Spiritual Living, which has had headquarters at 902 E. Second in Spokane since 1990, and Religious Science International in Golden, Colo., have united to form a single organization, Centers for Spiritual Living.

As the Spokane center moves to Golden, the local congregation of the Center for Spiritual Living at 2825 E. 33rd Ave. has gained furniture from the headquarters, which closed the end of February.

The Rev. Joe Niemiec, spiritual leader of the Spokane group with his wife, Toni, said the move indicates that “we are at the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.”

The Center for Spiritual Living Spokane was first affiliated with Religious Science International in 1946.  It holds the 23rd charter for that organization, Joe said.

“The merger of the offices was finalized at our recent New Orleans Conference,” he said.  “Some of those we have worked with closely in the home office already have moved to Golden.”

On Feb. 13, the Rev. Kenn Gordon was elected the first spiritual leader and the Rev. John Waterhouse was elected the first president of the Centers for Spiritual Living.

“This change will have little effect on individual members but is seen as a shift of consciousness as the two organizations come together to serve the global community,” he said.

International Association of Religious Science Churches (IARSC) was formed in 1949.  Ernest Holmes, the founder, along with a group of ministers created their own organization, the Church of Religious Science, in 1953. In 1954, it was renamed United Church of Religious Science, and later renamed United Centers of Religious Science.

IARSC continued and was renamed Religious Science International and later the International Centers for Religious Science.

“Our teaching is about creation and empowerment, letting go of what was and creating something new that will serve us and, therefore, the world,” Joe said.

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