Content from The Path, our bi-weekly enewsletter. Reported here for your convenience.
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Employment and Status Changes
Unity on the North Shore, Evanston, Illinois, [https://www.unityns.org/] welcomes Rev. Christina Garza as associate minister. Rev. Garza is a licensed Unity minister, recently graduated from Unity Urban Ministerial School. [https://uums.org/] In addition to presenting Sunday lessons and teaching, Rev. Garza will work with Senior Minister Rev. Kurt Condra to develop social justice and community outreach efforts in support of Unity North Shore's core values of community service, diversity, prayer, acceptance, and fellowship.
Barbara Winter Martin’s last day as temporary spiritual leader at Unity North Spiritual Center, Coon Rapids, Minnesota, [http://www.unitynorthmn.org/ ] was March 24, 2019. Rev. Phil Smedstad will become their transitional minister May 1, 2019.
Rev. Jesse Tanner has been hired by Unity of Oak Park, Illinois. [www.unityoakpark.org ] His start date is August 5, 2019.
Rev. Jackie Green will be retiring on April 30, 2019, as the Youth of Unity Consultant for the Northwest Region [http://www.unitynwregion.org/] after 40 years! The region has hired Nick Muncie-Jarvis, LUT, to serve as the new YOU consultant. Nick is a former YOUer and has led NGU (Next Generation Unity). Nick and Jackie will work together in a transition phase until Jackie’s last official day. Send personal wishes to Jackie to 7710 Beverly Drive, Spokane Valley, WA 99212.
Lilly Reed is the new spiritual leader at Unity of Fresno, California, [http://www.unityoffresno.org/] as of March 1, 2019.
Rev. Larry Schellink (ordained 1996) followed his heart into ministry 25 years ago, and now his heart has led him to find new ways of expressing and serving beyond church walls. His last Sunday at Unity of Santa Barbara, California, [http://www.santabarbaraunity.org/] is March 31, 2019.
After fulfilling his contract and allowing for a smooth transition, Rev. Clive deLaporte (ordained 2015) is no longer at Unity of Fort Myers Spiritual Center, Florida, [https://www.unityoffortmyers.org/] as of March 7, 2019.
Rev. Clive Delaporte (ordained 2015) has resigned from Unity of Fort Myers Spiritual Center, Florida, [https://www.unityoffortmyers.org/] effective March 7, 2019.
Rev. Terry Lund retired from Unity of Las Cruces, New Mexico, on January 31, 2019. She will be Minister Emerita there.
Clarification: We announced in The Path that Rev Karen Landwehr’s last day at Christ Unity Church, Collinsville, Illinois, [https://christunitychurch.org/] was March 3. Her actual last day at the church is April 1.
Marian Brannon is the new spiritual coordinator for Unity of Toledo Spiritual Center, Ohio, [https://www.unityoftoledo.com/] starting March 1, 2019.
Rev. Kathryn Brenson will be the new part-time minister at Unity Center of Davis, California, [http://www.unityofdavis.org/] starting March 1, 2019.
Rev. Christine McFarland’s last day at Unity of the Black Hills, Rapid City, South Dakota, [https://unityoftheblackhills.org/] is Sunday, March 3, 2019.
Rev. Steve Bolen will be the new part-time minister for Unity of Blairsville, Georgia, [https://www.unityofblairsville.org/] starting March 1, 2019.
Rev. Tim Lytle will be the new minister at Unity in Marin, Novato, California, [https://unityinmarin.org/] starting March 24, 2019. His last day at Unity Church of Hawaii, Honolulu, Hawaii, [www.unityhawaii.org ] is February 15, 2019.
Rev. Jan Mahannah is the new part-time minister at Unity Christ Center, Farmington, Missouri, [http://unity-farmington.org/] as of January 1, 2019.
Rev. Elizabeth Mora is the new minister at Unity Northwest Church, Des Plaines, Illinois, [https://www.unitynorthwest.org/ ] starting on February 17, 2019.
Rev. Karen Landwehr is retiring from Christ Unity Church, Collinsville, Illinois. [https://christunitychurch.org/] They will have a celebration following her last service on March 3, 2019. She has been there since her ordination in 1986. Happy retirement, Karen!
Rev. Marge Brown (ordained 2005) has been hired as the new minister at Unity in The Seven Hills, Lynchburg, Virginia, [https://unityinthesevenhills.org/] effective January 16, 2019.
Rev. Tony Senf retired after 11 years as spiritual leader of Unity Center of the Heights, Cleveland Heights, Ohio, [http://www.unitycenteronline.org/] on December 31, 2018. The ministry decided to disband on that day too. We thank Tony for his years of service and wish him happy adventures in retirement. We bless the members of this congregation on their new spiritual journeys.
Rev. Edith Washington-Woods (ordained 2009) is resigning as minister of Unity of Syracuse, New York. [https://www.unitysyracuse.org/ ] Her last day is January 20, 2019.
Penni Honey has been approved for special dispensation to serve as the spiritual leader at Unity of Flagstaff, Arizona, [https://unityofflagstaff.org/] starting October 1, 2018.
Rev. Eileen Patra is retiring from her position as senior minister of Unity of Livonia, Michigan. [https://www.unityoflivonia.org/] Her final Sunday service is January 6, 2019. Rev. Eileen and her husband Steve look forward to the next chapter in their lives and invite you to hold Unity of Livonia in your prayers as they await their next minister. [https://www.unityworldwideministries.org/livonia-mi-minister] The position is posted on the UWM website.
Correction: Pat Clarkson is the new spiritual leader for Unity Victoria Spiritual Community [http://www.unityvictoria.ca/] in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada, not Victoria, Texas. We regret the error.
Rev. Joanne Burns has resigned as senior minister of Unity Spiritual Center of Panama City, Florida, [https://www.unityofpanamacity.org/] effective December 1, 2018. Please hold both Rev. Joanne and Unity Spiritual Center of Panama City in prayer as they each discern their next steps.
With a heart full of love and appreciation, Rev. Molly Rockey retired from Unity of the Oaks, Thousand Oaks, California, [http://www.unityoftheoaks.org/] at the end of September 2018.
Pat Clarkson is the new spiritual leader for Unity of Victoria, Texas, effective on November 1, 2018.
Rev. Evin Wilkins is the minister at The Unity Center, West Linn, Oregon, [http://www.worldhealing.org/] effective October 28, 2018.
Rev. Anne Ahokangas, CSL minister, will be the minister at Unity of Greater Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, [http://www.unityhamilton.com/] starting on December 2, 2018.
Rev. Gary Canier (ordained 2016) has been hired as the new senior minister of Unity of New Braunfels, Texas. [https://www.unitynewbraunfels.org/ ] He starts on November 12, 2018.
Rev. Sharon Allmond (Class of 2002) is retiring from Unity Church of Light, St. Charles, Missouri, [http://www.unitychurchoflight.org/] effective November 1, 2019. Sharon has served ministries in Irving, Texas, St. Louis, Missouri, and Jefferson City, Missouri. Church ministry has been a rich blessing and leaving is bittersweet. She is looking forward to a slower pace and intends to continue her work with UWM, as well as doing occasional speaking at area churches.
Rev. Suzanne Leonard (Class of 1999) retired from Unity of Yucaipa, California. [http://unityofyucaipa.org/] She will be spending her time teaching public speaking, reading great novels, practicing yoga, traveling to Paris, and walking in her lovely Redlands, California, neighborhood!
Rhona Segarra is the spiritual leader at Unity of New Westminster, British Columbia, Canada, effective April 2018.
Rev. Brenda S. Ehret resigned from Unity Center of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, as of September 30, 2018. She had served there since September 2007.
Rev. Marianne Mahala Connally is resigning from Unity by the Bay, Annapolis, Maryland, effective on November 15, 2018. Her last Sunday is November 11, 2018.
Rev. Judy Pilat has concluded her contract with Unity of Madison, Wisconsin. She is looking forward to some rest and relaxation and the freedom to explore opportunities to serve outside the scope of active church ministry. Her last Sunday with the congregation was September 23, 2018.
Rev. Steve Towles will be the new minister at Unity Spiritual Center of North Idaho, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho, starting October 1, 2018.
Unity Center of the Desert, Yuma, Arizona, disbanded as of April 8, 2018.
Nicholas Humphrey will be the new spiritual leader for Unity Spiritual Center Greater Houston, Cypress, Texas, starting Sept 16, 2018.
Jon Scott is the spiritual leader of Unity of Chattanooga, Tennessee, effective Dec. 10, 2017.
Rev Shawn Wegner is the new minister at Unity of Lawrence, Kansas, starting Sept 1, 2018.
Unity North Spiritual Center, Coon Rapids, Minn., has hired Barbara Winter Martin to be their temporary part-time spiritual leader, starting in September, while they remain open for new leadership.
Rev Luz Lecour is the new minister of Unity of Citrus County, Lecanto, Fla., effective Aug 1, 2018.
Rev Greg Barrette will be starting as the new minister at Unity of Delray Beach, Fla., effective Oct 1, 2018. His last day at Unity Northwest Church, Des Plaines, Ill., is Sept 23, 2018.
Rev Mario De Ferrari retired after over 30 years at Unity Church of Anaheim, Calif. At his retirement party on July 29, 2018, he said, "When I first got here, people were afraid that I would leave. After I was here for a while, people were afraid that I would stay." The church held a 2½-hour remembrance and honor service, follow by a ceremony naming the church's Fellowship Hall after him. Rev Stu Smith (Interfaith?) is the new spiritual leader.
Rev Margaret Flick is moving from senior minister to minister emeritus at Unity of Santa Rosa, Calif., effective Aug 31, 2018.
Rev Mark Anthony Lord (CSL) is the spiritual leader at Unity of Naples, Fla., effective Sept 9, 2018.
Rev Marciah McCartney is resigning from Unity of Citrus County, Lecanto, Fla., effective August 31, 2018, but not retiring. She is following her heart to explore creative expressions in her life.
Unity of Citrus County, Lecanto, Fla., has hired their associate minister, Rev Luz Lecour, as their senior minister. We send blessings of joy, abundance and love as they share this amazing journey together.
Rev Elizabeth Mora’s last day at Unity of Montclair, N.J., was July 31, 2018.
Rev Claudia Naylor stepped down from being the interim minister at Unity of Blairsville, Ga., effective July 31, 2018. She moved back into retirement.
Beverly A Pryor LUT is the spiritual leader of Unity Church of the Hill Country, Kerrville, Texas, effective June 7, 2018.
Karol Ann Scotta is the spiritual leader at Unity of The Westside, Culver City, Calif.
Rev Lura Lisa Wall has been serving with Unity Baton Rouge, La., for a couple of years in an informal way, and now has an official status as the contracted Unity minister. We celebrate with her and the ministry, and look forward to seeing wonderful things unfold.
Rev Alden Studebaker will begin as the minister at Unity Christ Center in Eau Claire, Wisc., on Aug 1, 2018.
Rev Marge Brown’ s last day at Unity Spiritual Center North Central Florida, Fruitland Park, Fla ., was May 31, 2018. Rev Monica Driscoll was hired as their transitional minister starting June 1, 2018.
Rev Judy Elia is the new minister at Unity of the Keys, Key West, Fla., starting on Aug 1, 2018.
Rev David J Seibert has been hired as the minister at Unity of Quincy, Ill., effective as of April. He was born and raised in Quincy and has associated with Unity of Quincy since its early days in the 1980s.
In memory of Unity notables (or family of). List is retained from June 1 through May 31 of each year.
Rev. Jerry (Gerald) Belanger made his transition on March 27, 2019. Following his ordination in 1966, he ministered at Unity Church of Greater Rochester, New York,[ www.unityrochester.org
] for many years. He later served in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Tallahassee and Panama City, Florida. Jerry will be interred at Arlington National Cemetery for his World War II service in the Army Air Corps and the Air Force. He is survived by daughters Faith, Lorelie, and Christine, and granddaughter, Liz.
Unity Church Nigeria [firstname.lastname@example.org ] announces the transition of Rev. Agwu Kalu Okorie, Vice President of the Church in Nigeria, who is also minister of Unity Center of Practical Christianity, Aba, Abia State, Nigeria. He collapsed while giving a Sunday message on March 31 and died on April 4, 2019. Arrangements are pending. We hold Unity Church Nigeria and Rev. Okorie’s beloved family and community in our hearts for comfort and strength. We bless Rev. Okorie’s inspired work and teachings and honor his eternal presence.
Bill Ralston, beloved husband of Deni Miller Ralston [email@example.com] (LUT, 2018), made his transition on February 28, 2019, after a short illness. Bill was well-known at Unity Spiritual Center of North Central Florida [http://www.unityspiritualcenterfl.org/] in Fruitland Park, Florida, for keeping the plumbing working properly and helping with other projects. A Celebration of Life was held there and also in Louisville, Kentucky, their hometown.
Barbara Marx Hubbard [https://www.barbaramarxhubbard.com/] made her transition on April 10, 2019. She was a futurist, author, and public speaker. She is credited with the concept of the “birthing” of humanity. She was co-founder and president of the Foundation for Conscious Evolution, [https://centerforintegralwisdom.org/foundation-conscious-evolution/] and co-founder of the Evolutionary Church. [https://centerforintegralwisdom.clickfunnels.com/optin10728517] Barbara was a keynote speaker at the 2012 Unity People’s Convention held in Detroit, Michigan. Many Unity ministries participated in the “Birth 2012” 26-hour global broadcast event inspired by Barbara and held on December 22, 2012.
Rev. Richard Dale Billings, [https://gallery.mailchimp.com/deb14c68d6c710511d1f548b2/files/a3e70a4f-b1b9-4660-8517-a2621cfb864b/RichardBillings2019Memorial.pdf] 94, transitioned on February 18, 2019. Ordained in 1966, he ministered in Detroit before leading Unity of Oak Park, Illinois, [www.unityoakpark.org ] for 50 years. He was instrumental in successfully encouraging many folks into Unity leadership and also served as an interim minister throughout the country. There will be a memorial service hosted by Unity of Fox Valley, Batavia, Illinois, [http://ufvweb-new.unityoffoxvalley.org/] on March 9, 2019, 2 p.m. Thank you, Richard, for your powerful leadership and encouragement.
Frances Huffman, LUT, (licensed 2014) made her transition on February 4, 2019. She had served originally at Unity Village Chapel, Unity Village, Missouri. [https://www.unityvillagechapel.org/ ] She later served at Unity of Houston, Texas, [https://unityhouston.org/ ] where she was a beloved member of the community. Her celebration of life ceremony will be at Unity of Houston on March 2, 2019, at 11 a.m. (CT).
Rev. Charles Lelly, age 97, made his transition on February 6, 2019. He served at Unity of Pensacola, Florida, [https://www.unitypns.org/ ] Unity of Louisville, Kentucky, [http://www.unityoflouisville.org/ ] and on the UWM Board of Trustees. [https://www.unityworldwideministries.org/board-trustees] A brief Celebration of Life for Charles and his late wife, Rev. Betty, will be held February 17, 2 p.m. at Presbyterian Village, [https://www.phgainc.org/locations/austell-ga/] Lakeview Rm. Another celebration will be held February 24, 1 p.m. (ET), at Unity of Louisville and will be livestreamed on their Facebook page. [https://www.facebook.com/UnityOfLouisville/] Donations: Presbyterian Homes of GA, Caring Hand Fund, PO Box 957267, Duluth, GA 30095-7267. Condolences can be sent to daughter Sheila Blake, 1956 Overbrooke Way, Austell, GA 30106.
Rev. Dona Gilsdorf (LUT, ordained 1985) made her transition on January 11, 2019. She pioneered Unity Church of Rochester, Rochester Hills, Michigan, in 1972. She led this ministry right up to her transition. A memorial service will be held at the church. Details will be posted on unitychurchofrochester.com. [https://www.unitychurchofrochester.com/] In lieu of flowers, a memorial fund has been established at the church in Dona’s name. We bless Dona on her ongoing spiritual journey.
Grace Garraway, LUT, made her transition in early January 2019. She was licensed as a Unity teacher in January 2006 and served at Beth-el Unity Church, Georgetown, Guyana. We are grateful for her years of loving service to her spiritual community.
Carole Mullins, a friend of Unity in the Great Lakes region, passed on November 14, 2018. An ordained metaphysical minister, she lovingly served many churches/centers in the Detroit area over the years. Her Celebration of Life service is December 8, 11 a.m., at Renaissance Unity, [https://www.renaissanceunity.org/] Warren, Michigan, followed by a potluck repast. Contact the church at 586-353-2300 or firstname.lastname@example.org to help with the repast.
Mary J. Riley, LUT, made her transition December 3, 2018. Mary was a prayer chaplain, led various programs, and taught many classes for Unity Spiritual Center of Vero Beach, Florida. [http://www.unityofvero.org/] A Celebration of Life service will be held on Sunday, January 27, 2019, 2 p.m., at the church. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Unity Spiritual Center of Vero Beach Memorial Fountain Fund.
Rev. Deborah Knowles made her transition on November 5, 2018. She served Unity of Kona, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii, [http://www.unityofkona.org] as a spiritual leader (1999), as a spiritual leader/licensed teacher (2012), and as a minister (2015). We hold her beloved Ohana in our hearts for comfort and peace.
Rev. Betty M. Lelly passed on September 19, 2018. She is survived by her husband Rev. Charles D. Lelly. She was ordained in 1983 and served with her husband at Unity of Louisville, Kentucky, [http://www.unityoflouisville.org/] until 1992 when she retired.
Rev. Blaine Mays (ordained 1957) made his transition on October 1, 2018. He had been the senior minister at Unity of Phoenix, Arizona, for 25 years (1964–1991). He also served ministries in Missouri and California. He was past chair of the International New Thought Alliance and maintained a New Thought library at its headquarters in Mesa, Arizona. (https://intaarchives.org/) He inspired many in Unity and New Thought, and his presence will be missed.
Rev. Art Holt made his transition on September 13, 2018. He is survived by his wife Dottie, a licensed teacher. Art served in publishing at Unity Village for many years, at Unity of Naples, Florida, through his alternative ministry Upward Bound Unity, and was a founder of Suncoast Unity Ministers. His memorial service will be October 8, 2018, 2 p.m., at Unity of Citrus County, Lecanto, Florida. [www.unityofcitrus.org] Donations should be made to Unity of Citrus County in lieu of flowers.
Barbara Yackel, LUT, made her transition on August 29, 2018. Barbara lovingly served Unity Spiritual Community in Citrus Heights, California, for many years and in many roles. She led the Prayer Chaplains. Her wisdom and her loving presence touched countless lives. She will be greatly missed and long remembered.
Rev. Floy Kelly made her transition recently at The Woodlands, Texas. She had served ministries in Abilene and Grapevine, Texas. She took Abilene from a storefront to owning their own building. Thank you, Floy, for your dedicated, inspiring service.
Rev LaFayette Seymour passed on Aug 18, 2018. He served Unity Center of Truth, Washington, DC, for almost 30 years (now disbanded), followed by Unity Center DC (formerly CommUnity on the Hill). He was dearly beloved by all he served. A memorial service will be held Sat, Sept 8, 11:00 a.m. at Unity Center DC. [http://www.unitycenterdc.org/]
Obituary provided by his daughter Allison. [https://gallery.mailchimp.com/deb14c68d6c710511d1f548b2/files/038779d1-906c-4f3d-b5a2-ab7e39a4ed6c/LafayetteSeymourObitAug2018.pdf] Remembrance from Sylvia Strum. [https://gallery.mailchimp.com/deb14c68d6c710511d1f548b2/files/d36d2c6a-e5fc-4615-948f-335c51a37a0d/ReflectionsRevLaFayetteSeymourAug2018.pdf]
Rev John R Davis, husband of Rev Marleen Davis, made his transition on July 13, 2018. His Celebration of Life will be on his birthday, Sept 29, 2018, 11 a.m., at Unity Church for Creative Living in St Johns, Fla., [https://www.unityinjax.com/] the church John and Marleen co-founded in Dec 1983. He served there for almost 20 years and was made minister emeritus in 2010. Send your prayer support to Marleen at email@example.com
Rev Mary Linda McCall made her transition recently. She had served Unity Church of Jackson, Mich., until Jan 1, 2018, been associate minister at Detroit Unity Temple, and taught at Renaissance Unity. She was an amazing teacher of Truth with a powerful prayer consciousness. Rest in peace, beloved friend. Viewing: June 25, 4-8 p.m., Swanson Funeral Home (North West) [ http://www.swansonfuneralhomes.com/location/3422 ] Service: June 26, 10 a.m., Detroit Unity Temple http://www.detroitunity.com /
Rev Robbie Fahnestock (2003) made his transition peacefully on May 29, 2018. He served ministries in Calif. and Wash. A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m., Sat, June 16, at Seattle Unity. [https://seattleunity.org/] ContactAnnie Christensen, firstname.lastname@example.org or 206.622.8475 x125, for more information.
Thank you, Robbie, for your service and laughter.
Rev Alan Rowbotham passed on June 2, 2018. He was the senior minister at First Unity Spiritual Campus, St Petersburg, Fla., 1992–2005. He and his late wife Rev Kathryn taught at Unity School of Christianity, Unity Village, Mo. They served for several years at Unity of Roanoke, Va. Alan also led ministries in Ohio. He blessed Unity Worldwide Ministries on several ministry teams and the board (chair, 1993-94). Alan encouraged many to go into ministry. Thank you, Alan, for your life of service. Please send your prayer support to Celeste Shimamura.