Remembering Rev. Lynn Johnson

Rev. Lynn Johnson
May 15, 1940 – April 26, 2018

Memorial held at the Portland Center for Spiritual Living on Saturday, May 12th at 1:00 PM.

You can listen to the one-hour memorial (including personal sharing) online here. The audio contains the song “There is Only Love,” used with permission by Rev. Michael Gott and performed by LaRhonda Steele.


In ministerial school they tell us (new ministers) not to make very many changes when we join a new church. People, we are told, do not like things to change.

When Rev. Lynn Johnson came to be our Senior Minister at the “Portland Church of Religious Science” in 2002, she changed everything.

She changed the seating in the sanctuary. She changed the social hall. She changed the music, the stage layout and various “sacred” pieces of artwork in the little church we had in Parkrose. Most ministers would have been dismissed summarily for all the changes—and there were a few people at the time who might have bought her a plane ticket back to Santa Rosa.

But only a few people. You see, Rev. Lynn made even more changes on the “inside” than she did on the “outside.”

She brought us back to the core principles of Science of Mind. She brought us the tools of Visioning and Forgiveness in ways that we had forgotten. She brought us the challenge to be our true and authentic selves and to do more than just “listen on Sunday.” She challenged us to live the principles of Science of Mind—not just to read about them.

It’s with a very heavy heart that I write about her passing. Her 78 years on this planet were filled with the many ups and downs of a life well lived. She was not unusual in that way. Where Lynn really stood out were her 23 years in ministry as a Licensed Practitioner and Minister.

Lynn was an extraordinary teacher and truth-teller. Sometimes challenging, always compassionate, she knew just how to explain God’s potential to work through all of us. She was a gifted counselor, a steadfast friend and a tireless minister to the people around her.

In 1995, when she was taking the Practitioner II class in Santa Rosa, she was instructed to write out her own memorial service. I would like to excerpt from it here:

“And so today, we celebrate two aspects of the One life—the releasing of our friend, Lynn, from her human space suit, with all of its joys, sorrows, lessons, accomplishments, dramas, quiet reflections, emotions and history, and our own embracing of life as it relates to a new awareness of being connected with Lynn for all eternity through our shared consciousness as spiritual beings.

“Death is truly the ultimate illusion—for Life does not die; it simply changes form. We honor the change Lynn has made in her life process, and we acknowledge our own sorrow and feelings of sadness knowing that we shall miss her physical presence.”

I will always remember the many gifts of herself that Rev. Lynn Johnson gave to the world. I know she is always with those of us she touched so profoundly.

Rev. Larry King