Unity of Tustin
Celebrates 60 Years of Ministry
By Carolyne Mathlin
Has Unity of Tustin been a source of spiritual support for you? It has for many.
It may have been through involvement in our spiritual community or through
attendance at one of our excellent workshops or weekly classes. Perhaps you have
taken time apart from your busy life to meditate, pray, or simply sit in our
sacred gardens, or walk our Chartres-style labyrinth. Whatever your connection
to Unity of Tustin, after 60 years of ministry in
Orange County, we know there are many blessings involved in experiencing
Unity of Tustin and it is time to celebrate. Won’t you join us?
On Sunday, June 22, we will celebrate 60 years of ministry beginning with
our 9 and
11am Sunday services. The festivities will continue at 3pm with a
reception, followed by a ceremony at 4pm, and concluding with dinner at
5:30pm. The reception and ceremony are open to everyone on a love-offering
basis. Advanced ticket purchase is required for our on-site dinner.
The reception at 3 pm will feature highlights of our 60 years, including
pictures of “Then and Now,” the theme of our 60th anniversary celebration. This
will be the perfect opportunity to tour our newly-completed meditation gardens
and amazing grounds. We will have music, light refreshments and activities for
the whole family.
Our ceremony at 4 pm will be on the lawn, facilitated by Dr. Marj Britt and
Carolyne Mathlin. For those wishing to continue the celebration, our elegant
dinner on the lawn will begin at 5:30 pm. Please contact the church for ticket
Unity of Tustin, once known as Unity Church of Truth, was founded in 1948 in a
small white house on South Main Street in Santa Ana. In 1949, it moved to its
first “real” church building in Santa Ana under the direction of co-ministers
Myran and Estelle Key. As the church grew, it moved to increasingly larger
quarters, ultimately selling a large property on Cambridge in Orange and briefly
moving to rented quarters at the Ebell Club in Santa Ana.
In the late 1980s we purchased our current property at 14402 South Prospect
Avenue in Tustin. Included in the three acres of orange trees were two older
houses: the small white house (Hummingbird House) and the larger Victorian house
(Victoria House). In addition to the orange orchard were various exotic, mature
trees that we have preserved over the years.
Architect Joe Woollett designed and oversaw the building of our original
sanctuary seating 85 people, two classrooms, an administration building, and a
small parking lot. Even then, we planned to expand our buildings in the future
as the need arose.
Dr. Marj Britt became our Senior Minister in the spring of 1993 and under her
leadership the congregation grew in consciousness as well as in numbers. In 1993
there was an average of 30 people on campus. We knew it was time to build again
when we were spilling out the sanctuary walls
every Sunday, even with three services! In 1998 the sanctuary was
expanded to seat 205 people. We also added more classrooms and expanded our
Through visioning and listening to the guidance of Spirit, we saw there would be
sacred meditation gardens and a pathway that was a visual representation of the
teachings of Unity and Unity of Tustin rather than additional buildings.
Our community envisioned meditation gardens that would include eight sites which
represent the seven days of creation based on Unity co-founder Charles
Fillmore’s metaphysical and mystical interpretation. The original design of our
Meditation Gardens was created by Ann Christoph, Landscape Architect ASLA, who
also designed our recently-installed Children’s Garden.
In 1999 we laid a pathway for our yet-to-be installed gardens. As we walked
through weeds and broken water pipes we prayed at each of the stations, invoking
the energy of each and seeing it in its fulfillment. Since that initiation nine
years ago, we have installed six sites.
On June 22 after the 9 and 11am services we will dedicate Site 7, the
last one to be completed. At the 4pm ceremony, we will debut our newly-revised
meditation garden booklet. All who attend our afternoon celebration
on June 22 will receive a commemorative copy of the booklet as our gift.
In preparation for the celebration
on June 22, our Senior Minister Dr. Marj Britt has been giving a Sunday
talk series that is based on our Meditation Gardens and the stages of creation.
She has also been weaving in experiences and teachings from her recent trip to
Southern India with
Andrew Harvey, who is a great friend of Unity of Tustin and has been here
for many intensives over the years.
Over Marj’s 16-year tenure at Unity of Tustin she has inspired us to be a Campus
of Consciousness. There is a thriving adult education ministry called the School
of Light. We have hosted master teachers, modern-day mystics and the spiritual
avant-garde including Adyashanti,
John Gray, Jean Houston, Leslie Temple-Thurston, David Hawkins, and Don
Unity of Tustin’s mission is: “Healing Lives, Building Dreams, Realizing God.”
Whether you come to pray and heal, create heaven on earth in your life or to
Unity of Tustin is a place for everyone.
We offer three Sunday services. Our 7am service is a contemplative service which
includes a thirty-minute silent meditation. Our 9 and 11am services include
music, meditation, and a spiritual message, lasting about an hour and thirty
We offer Sunday School for nursery school through the 5th grade at the 9 and
11am services and our teens meet at 11am. We host two Silent Meditation Retreats
each year: a six-day retreat in May in Rancho Palos Verdes and a three-day
retreat in November in
For more information about Unity of Tustin, visit us online at
For information on our 60th anniversary, please contact Mary Jeanne Hawes at
(714) 730-3444 ext. 109 or
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