Expect Your Good, Create Your Good

good thingsMy husband and I come from different religious backgrounds. I was raised a Roman Catholic, and my husband was a Southern Baptist. I am grateful for the spiritual foundation I received growing up, but I found, in my twenties, that I wanted something else, something different. I wanted a spiritual home that felt right for both of us. A friend invited us to attend their church, and that is where we were introduced to the concept of New Thought. I started volunteering in the bookstore and began reading this little magazine called the Daily Word.

In Unity, I learned about the power of prayer and the power of affirmations. Looking back at my life “BU” (Before Unity), it is not that I expected bad things to happen, just that I did not always expect good things to occur. I had to do something extraordinary to “deserve” whatever good happened to me. That was just my mindset at the time.

Through the encouragement of great Unity teachers, I realized the power of my mind, of my belief system, of my expectation of good. They showed me that, when I expect good to show up in my life, I look for the good and I actually see it (surprise, surprise!). Situations, circumstances, people whom I might have ignored now became channels for good in my life because I saw the good in all.

A recent article on LinkedIn shows that the secular world is well aware of this power of positive thinking. Here is an excerpt from that article, called “The Power of Belief” by Bruce Kasanoff:

“Never underestimate the power of belief. It works both ways. If you constantly tell yourself you are not capable enough to get promoted or to get a raise, you won’t get either. If you believe you will fail, you will fail. If you fear sickness, you may well fall ill. If you feel your career is headed nowhere, it will probably head nowhere.

“The first step to health, success, and achievement is to believe. But don’t take on this challenge by yourself. Surround yourself with credible evidence that good things are headed your way. Spend time in the company of positive, supportive people. Do whatever it takes to build a strong belief in your mind that success is in your future.”

If you want to be surrounded by positive, supportive people, come experience Unity of Santa Rosa. Join us for Sunday service and stay afterwards for refreshments. Sign up for a workshop or class, such as Prosperity Plus II: Harnessing Your Invisible Power. Attend one of the special events you find on our calendar, such as Guy’s Request Concert.

Randi Vessels picTake charge and create the amazing future that you deserve! For you are part of the Divine, you are a blessing and you are truly blessed!

Namaste,
Randi Vessels
Secretary, Unity Board of Trustees

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Prospering Our Way to the Future

Kathy HoareIn Unity, our basic beliefs are in the all-pervasive, all-good presence of God, along with each one of our own God-selves as a unique expression of Spirit. The reason I am so passionate about prosperity studies is that manifestation is practical, real-world experience of these beliefs. It roots them further in my being by seeing proof of my relationship to this power. Currently, we are almost halfway through the incredible new study materials in Mary Morrissey’s Prosperity Plus II program. For those of you who are not in our summer class, you will have a chance to join us in the fall.

As our community commits to fiscal responsibility in our new ministerial leadership, I invite those who have not yet experienced the power of tithing to experiment with this dynamic spiritual tool. I invite you to a summer experiment, used by other Unity communities, called the Unexpected Income Program (UIP). From now until August 31st, I encourage you to commit to daily prayer of prosperity for yourself and our community and to tithe 10% of any and all unexpected income that comes to you during this period. Unexpected income would be income outside your regular form of income; income arriving “out of the blue.” You will find your focus will shift to the abundance of Source and responding with gratitude, and blessing through tithing unexpected income, you will seed the growth of increased abundance.

Using a conscious and deliberate connection to God through affirmative prayer and tithing, we become more aware of the Presence within ourselves. We see how our mind is part of the Universal Mind. Making a commitment, being open and receptive, and paying attention is all that is required. Please mark any tithes as a result of this summer experiment “UIP” so we can report back to the congregation the results of our exploration.

Please align with many others in our congregation in affirming this prayer each morning from now until August 31st, joining together in the power of collective prayer.

Our Prayer for Prosperity
The rich abundance of God is our infinite resource.
Our lives and our church are wondrously blessed.
Each day the bounty of Source flows into our lives and community.
We are increasingly open and receptive to these blessings, big and small.
As we give freely and fearlessly, our gifts seed our bounty and it is returned many times over.
Many blessings here and now manifest in expected and unexpected ways.
We are so deeply grateful.
And so it is. Amen.

In appreciation of this blessed community,
Kathy Hoare, President, Unity Board of Trustees

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Welcoming Our Future

After an incredible stabilizing two years, our community has moved into being open and ready to receive Unity’s next minister. As the board member assigned to assist the search team, I am excited and honored to participate in this process.

What skills will this person bring with them to Unity of Santa Rosa? Will they be a visionary, a communicator, great in human relations, strong in chaplaincy/pastoral skills, a team player, and a spiritual counselor, or bring with them a strong administration background?

ImageWe as a community will get to decide this and how exciting is that! Every Sunday you will find a yellow sheet of paper asking for your input on this and on a few other topics. The search committee and the board will be reading these and taking notes. The board is going to hold a members’ meeting in the next couple of weeks strictly to talk about the vision for a minister and if the community is behind supporting such a move. Then there is the opportunity to serve on the search team. This team is being led by Ellin Chess, and I want to thank her for taking on this committee.

The process that the search team takes goes something like this: Unity will send in our packet to Unity Worldwide Ministries. This packet will have the job description that we as a community worked on putting together. Any ministers interested in applying for the position will send their resumes to UWM and they will forward them to us. The search team will then review them and set up phone interviews. The search team narrows it down to two or three candidates who will then come for a weekend, do a workshop and a Sunday service. It is then up to the board to decide who is chosen as our part-time minister.

Unity - Easter John cropWhomever Unity hires as a minister, it will be a person that all of us who participated in the process had a say in choosing. I ask that all of you keep the search team and the board in your prayers these next couple of months. I truly believe that we at Unity of Santa Rosa can find a minister with all the qualities that will keep us moving forward but still keep our community the special place that it is.

Blessings to All,

John Consedine

Vice President, Unity Board of Trustees

 

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Leave a comment

What Do You Imagine?

ImageWhy the heck would I join the Board of Trustees again only a year after finishing my previous 3-year Board commitment?

In November of 2012 I wrote the following for the fall Unity newsletter, and it still rings true:

The most valuable gift I get from my participation in Unity of Santa Rosa is an incredible functional family in which to heal, grow and   contribute. In my involvement as a Board of Trustees member, my attendance at Sunday service, my spiritual exploration in community and in the resulting friendships, Unity teaches me every day that I am loved and a precious part of the Infinite Divine. I can’t get this support outside of a spiritual community. I am deeply grateful for this spiritual home.

We are entering an exciting year here at Unity! After a productive, stabilizing and maturing period without ministerial leadership, and under the constant, dedicated leadership of our Board President, Sue Hicks, we have come to the point of adding a minister back into our fold. This is a goal we have had since Rev. Kathy McCall left two years ago. It was hard to see at the time, but events do operate in perfect order. This time of leading ourselves as a community has brought us closer together and given us clarity as to who we are.  We understand every detail of the workings of our church and are now in a position to create a vision for the ministerial leadership that we desire.

The Board will be asking for your input through feedback forms, focus groups and personal conversations. We expect to have a part-time minister by the end of this year. Other 2014 goals will focus on evolving our Sunday speakers, our music program, Youth Education, the bookstore, our Welcome Team, creating great events and educational programs, establishing a Building Fund program to retire our mortgage debt, and expanding our church for a larger, appreciative and involved congregation. We are ready for this. We have the clarity, the imagination, the desire, and most of all, we have such a high degree of involvement and ownership from our congregants.

We’ve got great events coming up this year. The Prosperity Plus program by Mary Morrissey has introduced a 2nd level of course work that will be facilitated here along with the basic class, which begins in March. Movie Nights pick up again this spring, running right through to fall. The 5th Unity Healing Fair will be bigger and better than ever! Rev. Alyzsa will facilitate a fall book study program, and Unity will be adding more workshops, classes and events.

ImageThe evolution of our church is only limited by our imaginations. Please claim ownership to this incredible and dynamic community as it grows and changes. Invite your friends to participate, take a class, step up to the plate. You are invited along for the ride; let’s go together.

Kathy Hoare, Board President

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Instruments of the One

ImageAs I look back on the year 2013 for Unity of Santa Rosa, I see a year of prosperity, spiritual growth, enthusiasm, dedication, and love for our spiritual home. We have met challenges with grace and hard work. It is so gratifying to be a part of such a positive thinking community.

I urge all of you to attend our Annual Meeting on Sunday, February 16, 2014 at 12:30pm. Only members may vote but all are welcome to attend and give voice to your visions for our church. New Board members will be elected and discussion will be continued on plans to hire a part-time minister this year.

At the meeting in February, my three-year term on the Board of Trustees will come to an end. I served as President for two and a half years, and while I encountered many personal and organizational challenges during this time, I can honestly say that my fellow Board members and this congregation have always given me their utmost support and guidance. For this, I am eternally grateful. Divine Spirit also answered my call for patience, understanding, strength and confidence to carry out my responsibilities.

While administering and serving our church without a minister is far from ideal, I believe that our faith in God and the practice of Unity-based principles have kept us on an upward path for sustainability and growth. We have looked within for ways to be of service and shared our talents.

I believe prayer has been an important part of this process. Unity minister, Jim Rosemergy, shared the following thoughts in an article titled, Faith Matters.

“We know life cannot be different unless we are different. We pray to be transformed and more aware of whom we are. We see the world differently and our priorities shift. We detach from the world and give more and more attention to the Presence that dwells in us. When we pray, we speak less and listen more. This is a glorious time, but the rite of passage continues. The focus is not God outside us or God inside us, but God as us …Spirit expressing Itself as us. When we reach this rite of passage…God as us…our prayers change. We don’t pray for miracles, we don’t pray to be transformed; we pray to be useful, to be instruments of the One. “

St. Francis spoke such words, “Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.”

ImageI encourage you to remember these words as we begin a new year. Prayer is powerful.

With loving blessings and abundant gratitude,

Sue Hicks, Board President

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Mindfulness

ImageIn The Power of Now Eckhart Tolle suggests: “Make it your practice to withdraw attention from past and future whenever they are not needed…Be present as the watcher of your mind—of your thoughts and emotions as well as your reactions in various situations. Be at least as interested in your reactions as in the situation or person that causes you to react.”

I’ve found this to be a very helpful practice during my time on the Board these past three years. Life is joyful for me when I live in the moment and consider each instant a holy instant, as they say in .  While I can’t honestly say every moment has been holy, mindfulness has often helped me create a gap between a situation and my response. Knowing that divine ideas manifest good in my life, I am mindful of which thoughts rule my consciousness and actions.

It is wonderful to see that western medicine is also embracing mindfulness as a way to enrich our lives, improve our health, and cope with pain and sickness.  A recent Mayo Clinic health letter described several programs in which participants were taught to practice mindfulness. As they felt the pain and observed the sensations in their bodies, they also learned to minimize their reactions to the distressing thoughts and feelings that can accompany illness and pain. The more they practiced mindfulness, the more they were able to regulate their emotions and form a buffer against the everyday stresses of life.

ImageMindfulness, living in the moment, brings me joy. So does gratitude. As my time on the Board comes to an end, I am grateful to have consistently worked with a creative, caring, and active Board of Trustees. I am profoundly thankful to all of you wonderful volunteers who have helped me coordinate and watch over our growing Children &  Family Ministry, our bookstore, and amazing events, such as World Peace Day. I appreciate each and every one of you who show up on Sunday. Together, centered in God, we transform lives. Finally,  I want to thank my generous and loving husband, Kerry, who has always been there giving of his time and talent.

In Love & Light,

Cindy Jacobs, Unity Board of Trustees

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

As the Seasons Change, So Do We

ImageAs I look back over the last seasons, I am in awe of all the beauty and wonder that it has bestowed upon us all. I first came to Unity because of a movie night poster I saw at a local coffee shop, and my first thought was, FREE movie? Sure, why not. I mean who doesn’t love something for free, right? Little did I know that walking into Unity back in the summer of 2010 would set me on a course of building connections with such a wonderful community. I started attending movie nights on a pretty regular basis and noticed a flyer on the table about an upcoming class called “Prosperity Plus – A New Way of Living.” Again I thought everyone needs prosperity (I know I sure did). Taking that step has completely changed my life!

I joined Unity as a new member in November 2012, and since then I have joined the Board of Trustees and co-facilitate movie nights and Prosperity Plus, which are both near and dear to my heart. Without them I may never have found such a loving and wonderful community of like-minded people.

I am so happy and grateful to be part of the Unity community and on the Board of Trustees. We have seen Unity of Santa Rosa lose its minister, and face what seemed like the certain end of the church, to become a thriving and growing community with ever increasing financial stability and community involvement. I would like to personally thank ALL the past and present Board Members for doing such a wonderful job, even when it may have felt like an impossible job of holding Unity together.

You never know what will inspire, guide, or change your life forever, whether it is a FREE movie or a 10-week class in Prosperity Plus. All you have to do is be open and awake to the possibilities and gifts presented to you along the way.

As I look back on the past and look forward to the upcoming seasons, I am so grateful to be right here…. right NOW! We are all on a journey of discovery. We just have to be open to the possibilities that surround us and be willing to take the steps to go in the direction of our dreams.

I would like to invite you to come and enjoy a movie with us or join the next “Prosperity Plus – A New Way of Living” class and find out for yourself what it is all about. I promise you that if you take action you will not be disappointed in the outcome.

“Inspiration without action is merely entertainment – act on your inspiration today.” ~ Mary Manin Morrissey

What are you grateful for?

Candace Bertrand, Vice President

Unity Board of Trustees

Posted in Newsletter Messages | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment