Unity Santa Fe, founded by Rev. Jean Beggs in 1974 as a study group, was incorporated as a church on October 11, 1977, and became a member of the Association of Unity Churches International, now Unity Worldwide Ministries, in 1978. Rev. Jean was the minister for ten years. Over the next twenty years Unity Santa Fe was “the church on wheels” in numerous locations served by a number of ministers. During this time attendance at our Sunday services waxed and waned between 25 and 70 people. When the church moved or a minister left, attendance dropped.
- Rev. Jean Beggs (1974 - 1986)
- Rev. Charlotte Prossen (1986 - 1989)
- Rev. Alana Woods (1989 - 1991)
- Rev. Paul James Tenaglia (1991 - 1993)
- Revs. Eileen Douglas & Richard Talley (1993 - 1994)
- Rev. Brendalyn Batchelor (1994 - 2021)
As a Licensed Unity Teacher, Brendalyn was commissioned by the Board of Trustees as spiritual leader of Unity Santa Fe in December 1994. She was ordained in February 2000 upon completion of the Association of Unity Churches International Field Licensing Program.
Six months after Brendalyn became minister, the church moved to the Santa Fe Women’s Club where we remained for five years – the longest time we had ever spent in one location! When the Women’s Club was put up for sale in 1997 we began a year long “church search” to rent, purchase or build a 24/7 facility where we could settle.
The La Cuchara Market at 1108 La Cuchara Road (now 1212 Unity Way) kept showing up as the most feasible option. After three rounds of deciding “no,” we received a most generous donation that made it possible to say “yes”! Yes -- to this Middle Eastern grocery store and delicatessen that was designed to look like a northern New Mexico church. In the CommUnity Room is a painting of the original building by renowned artist Jean-Claude Gaugy who drew the sketch of the painting while sitting on a bail of hay in the parking lot during the renovation.
After a unanimous vote at our membership meeting we began negotiating the purchase of the building and, with awe-inspiring miracles continuing to unfold, we closed escrow on our new home on October 30, 1998.
Over the next nine months of labor (which we called “sweat equity”) we finished the renovation and transformation of the building and celebrated the “birth” of the church of our dreams. The first service on Sunday, May 15, 1999, was an incredibly joyful occasion with a full house! (Seating capacity of the sanctuary is 150).
Construction of a building addition, including the bell tower, book store, classrooms, restroom, and expanded minister’s office (from 8’ x 9’ to 12’ x 12’), was completed in June 2002. We purchased an acre lot across the road from the church on March 3, 2003.
All who have served and attended over the years brought this church home into physical reality as a result of first building the church of our dreams in consciousness. We know that as we continue to build this consciousness . . . they will continue to come!