Is Your Gift to Unity Supporting What You Think It Is?

Published on: July 6, 2015

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Despite the fact that our name of Unity implies singularity, the reality is that the Unity movement consists of two separate hub organizations: Unity Worldwide Ministries (UWM) and Unity World Headquarters (UWH) at Unity Village.

This has caused a lot of confusion, especially when it comes to financial giving. How do you know which entity to donate to and which will fit the intention of your support? The answer is not as simple as we would all like. I have worked at both organizations: for five years as staff writer for the monthly version of Unity Magazine at Unity Village, Mo. (1995-2000), and now for almost 15 years for Unity Worldwide Ministries. UWM is just four miles from “the Village” in next-door Lee’s Summit, Mo.

We at UWM often hear people declare that they are supporting us with their tithes. When we check our records, no indication of financial support exists. Why the discrepancy? The money is going to our partner organization. Even when the minister and board intends a tithe from their spiritual community to come to UWM, the office assistant or bookkeeper may be sending it to Unity Village instead.

The reverse is also true: donations meant for UWH come to us. When the intention of the check or online donation is clear, the funds are transferred to the other organization.

Now that the transfer of educational programming is in process of moving from oversight by UWH to UWM in 2016, there is an added layer of confusion. So how to clarify the distinction between our two organizations?

 

Unity Worldwide Ministries Primer

Let’s start with who Unity Worldwide Ministries is and what we do. The bottom line is that we serve Unity leaders (ministers, licensed teachers, boards) and Unity spiritual communities (churches, centers, study groups, alternative and expansion ministries) within the US and worldwide.

I used to be able to say that the Village educated people and UWM credentialed them, but that will no longer be the case by the end of 2016. UWM will be providing educational programming and ordination/credentialing. Just as a note, UWM has educated Unity leaders through the field licensing program for many years and various other levels of education including Certified Spiritual Educator for those wanting to serve youth.

UWM assists ministers and ministries with:

If it is a topic related to a Unity leader or community, you probably want to contact us individually or generally at [email protected].

 

Stay in the Know

You can keep up with what is going on in our Unity community by subscribing to The Path, our biweekly e-newsletter; Unity Leaders Journal, our online professional peer journal; and Important Communication, our as-needed email blast. You can sign up for all of these on www.unity.org/enews. All of these communication vehicles are aimed to serve Unity leaders and communities.

Our website www.UnityWorldwideMinistries.org has a wealth of information for Unity leaders and communities under the Services & Support tab. Our Shop provides access to resources and supplies to help run your ministry.

If you want to know where the nearest Unity community is, look no further than the Find a Ministry option on our website.

UWM has a lot to offer you. Please take the time to browse our website. We know that you will be pleasantly surprised by how much we have available. Feel free to contact us with any questions that you have at [email protected] or 816.524.7414.

 

What’s at Unity Village?

Unity Village is considered the physical campus of Unity, the location of the beautiful fountains, tower and Mediterranean architecture. This is the property that the Fillmores purchased starting in the early 1900s and it is its own township, incorporated in Missouri. It is next-door to Lee’s Summit, not a part of it. Geographically, this area is at the southeast corner of the greater Kansas City (Mo.) metropolitan area.

“The Village,” as it is often called, is home to the organization now known as Unity World Headquarters (UWH) at Unity Village. For many years it was known as Unity School of Christianity. UWH focuses on serving individuals who may or may not attend a Unity church.

UWH oversees:

  • Silent Unity, the 24-hour prayer ministry
  • Daily Word magazine, the popular daily devotional
  • Unity Magazine, a bimonthly inspirational publication
  • Message of Hope (providing free spiritual materials to the visually impaired and others in need)
  • Unity Institute and Seminary. The institute consists of: Unity Library and Archives, the ministerial education program, and the Spiritual Education and Enrichment (SEE) program. The latter two will be moving to UWM in late 2016. The library and archives house the Myrtle Fillmore, Charles Fillmore and Eric Butterworth collections.
  • Unity Online Radio, offering podcasts from leading Unity and New Thought spiritual leaders

On the grounds of Unity Village is a bookstore and coffee shop, golf course, and hotel and conference center. The beautiful grounds and inn are perfect for lunch, weddings and banquets.

Unity Village Chapel is located in the Activities Center. It is now an independently governed entity from UWH. Rev Erin McCabe is the senior minister.

In the historic Unity Tower is the for-profit Awaken Whole Life Center which offers retreats, integrative medicine, spa services, massages, yoga classes, coaching, fitness center, etc. The views from the tower are spectacular!

 

UWM vs UWH Side by Side

Here is a side by side review of what role each organization plays in the Unity movement. Please educate yourselves and your ministry staff members so that you can utilize both of our services and resources as much as possible.

Unity Worldwide Ministries

Unity World Headquarters
at Unity Village

Serves Unity leaders (ministers, licensed teachers, spiritual leaders, boards, ministry staff and lay leaders) and ministries:
•   Credentials leaders – for youth, teachers and ministers
•    Provides employment support for ministers and ministries
•    Supports the creation of new ministries
•    Creates social media for Unity leaders, including this Unity Leaders Journal
•    Hosts an annual Unity People’s Convention
•    Provides consulting support for ministries: bylaws, policies, organizational development, ministry skills, transition consulting, Unity Identity Program (branding), accounting, finance, long-term care insurance, pension, tax guidance and tax-exempt status
•    Supplies ministry curriculum, pamphlets and resources
•   Maintains a public access listing of ministries on the web
Serves individuals :
•    Prayer – Silent Unity
•    Publishing – Daily Word, Unity Magazine, Unity Books, Unity Blessing Booklets, Message of Hope (free literature)
•    Unity Online Radio
•    Education – Unity Institute (Master of Divinity degree, Spiritual Education & Enrichment)—until late 2016
•    Library and Archives
•    Retreats (Awaken Whole Life Center) and events including Come Home to Unity retreats
•    Unity Banquet and Dining (formerly Unity Inn) and Unity Village Hotel and Conference Center

Website

www.unity.org
(link to UWM off main page)

or www.UnityWorldwideMinistries.org

Website

www.unity.org

and www.dailyword.com; www.unityvillage.org; www.unityenlinea.org

Physical Address

401 SW Oldham Parkway
Lee’s Summit, MO 64081

Physical Address

1901 NW Blue Parkway
Unity Village, MO 64065‐0001

Online Donations

www.unity.org/donate

On this page you may select to which organization you want to donate.

Online Donations

www.unity.org/donate

On this page you may select to which organization you want to donate.

Donate by Phone

816.524.7414

between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. (CT),
Monday through Thursday

Donate by Phone

1.800.248.6489

between 7:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. (CT),
Monday through Friday

Donation Mailing Address

Unity Worldwide Ministries
PO Box 610
Lee’s Summit, MO 64063

Donation Mailing Address

Unity World Headquarters
1901 NW Blue Parkway
Unity Village, MO 64065‐0001

Bernadette Swanson

Bernadette Swanson is Interim Director of Communications at Unity Worldwide Ministries. She works on The Path e-newsletter, Unity Leaders Journal online journal and www.UnityWorldwideMinistries.org. She is a licensed Unity teacher at Unity of Independence, Mo.


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"Advancing the movement of spiritual awakening and transformation through Unity, a positive path for spiritual living."

  • This is helpful, including the visual side-by-side element. My Launch Team will understand this pairing better now, I’m sure.

    • Bernadette Swanson

      That’s great, John! We wanted to bring some clarity to who the two organizations are and what services they provide. Let me know how this works out for your team and if they have any questions.

    • Bernadette Swanson

      Happy that the side-by-side is working for people. Thanks, John!

  • April Kain-Breese

    Thanks Bernadette for this important clarification. I plan to share it with my community.

    • Bernadette Swanson

      Glad this article will help clarify. That’s its purpose. Thanks, April!

  • Jacquie Fernandez-Lenati

    Excellent piece to share with my board of trustees at Unity Spiritual Center in Springfield. I think we will roll it into our board training and membership classes!