It all started when...
The Unity Movement began over 100 years ago. The founders were Myrtle and Charles Fillmore. The theological foundation of Unity lies in the Truth Principles as taught through the Ministry of Jesus the Christ and interpreted by Unity Worldwide Ministries and the Association of Unity Churches International. Both of these entities are located at Unity Village, Missouri, which is the international headquarters of the Unity Movement.
In 1969 a small study group was interested in the spiritual and philosophical teaching and tenets as taught by Unity. During the start-up phase the study group held services and classes at the Ivanhoe Temple located at 1600 E. Linwood Blvd. The study group grew. One year later the group moved to a theater located at 5921 Prospect. In 1971 the church became an official affiliate church of Unity Worldwide
Ministries and officially adopted the name Unity Southeast Church.
The over-arching purpose of Unity Southeast Church continues to be to provide a forum and an opportunity for spiritual growth. Our focused goal is empowerment and transformation of its members through the teachings of Jesus Christ and the demonstration of Truth Principles as taught by Unity Worldwide Ministries.
The church remained at the 59th and Prospect location until a flood devastated the property in 1977. The church began the process of looking for a permanent home after the flood. In 1978 the church purchased the Christian Science building located at 3421 E. Myer Blvd, where it remains to this day.
Since its beginning Unity Southeast has had 7 Senior Ministers. The first was Rev Wentworth Jenkins; his tenure was from January, 1970 to May, 1987. The second Minister was Rev. Maurice Williams; his tenure was from June, 1988 to June, 1995. The third Minister was Rev. Ken Williams; his tenure was from May, 1996, to June, 1997. The fourth Minister was Rev. Linda Poole Kennedy. Rev. Kennedy held the position from July, 1997 to June, August, 2004. The fifth Minister was Rev. Kevin Ross and his tenure was from May, 2007 to June, 2009. The sixth Co-Ministers were both Rev. Tom and Therese Lee. They were Senior Ministers from July, 2009 to February, 2012. Rev. Tom Lee died in February, 2012 and his wife resigned from the church in May, 2012. Rev. Gloria Holt was Associate Minister at the time of Rev. Tom’s death. She became the seventh Senior Minister in June, 2012 and remains in that position today.
The church remains a family size church, with approximately 60 members. The church undertook a major renovation project in 2005. The roof was replaced, along with two furnaces, two air conditioners, major repair work was done on the church steeple and the parking lot was blacktopped. The church retired the renovation debt of $35,000 in 3 years. Not a small feat for a family size church.
From 2008 to 2012, there were several transitions in the Senior Minister role. The Church experienced the death of the senior minister and another minister moved to the west coast.
Since 2012 the Church has seen growth and revitalization under the spiritual leadership of Rev. Gloria Holt. In 2015 the Church engaged in a major strategic planning conference. The overarching goal was to set goals and priorities for the next 10 years.
One of the highest ranking priorities gleamed from the strategic planning conference was the renovation of the Church.
Consequently, we are embarking on a major building renovation. The capital improvement is expected to be completed by the fall of 2017.