Rev. Crystal E. Muldrow (Rev. Boepbo Sunya Dharma),
Senior Minister

The first time I stepped into a Unity Ministry as an adult, I knew I was home. It was Easter Sunday 1998, sitting on the stairs of a packed sanctuary of over 1400 people, that I was spiritually cleansed by messages of God’s unconditional love and how I was created and loved as I am. I had not been looking for a church community. I was anti-church yet spiritual. If it hadn’t been for friends I admire urging me to try out their church, I would not have gone. My experience that Easter changed my life and my viewpoint of what a loving, inspirational, compassionate and thriving spiritual community is. I wasn’t looking, yet I found home. I have been committed to my spiritual growth and aiding in others spiritual growth ever since.

It was at this church, Renaissance Unity (formally known as Church of Today), that I began to listen to the ministerial calling that I had pushed aside since I was a teenager. After taking most of the Spiritual Education and Enrichment (SEE) classes at Renaissance Unity, I enrolled in the Unity Urban Ministerial School in Detroit, MI. After graduating from the Urban School in 2005, I moved to Unity Village, MO. to complete my final year of seminary school at Unity Institute.

In June of 2006, I graduated from Unity Institute and was ordained a minister by Unity Worldwide Ministries. Upon ordination, and with the strong desire to teach Unity principles to young adults, I created the internet ministry, Unity Community for Spiritual Unfoldment (UCSU). As the founding minister of (UCSU), I gained extensive experience about how to create all the varied components of a ministry. UCSU dissolved in 2011, While working with UCSU, I enjoyed the opportunity it granted me to be a regular guest speaker at churches in Kansas and Missouri.

My involvement at UCSU prepared me for my position as the interim minister, of Unity Church of Peace: Practical Spirituality (UCP) in Jefferson City, Missouri in 2011 and 2014 -15. After many years of guest speaking and being an interim minister, I realized that it was time for me to search for a ministry where I could provide spiritual leadership for congregants in ways that were not always possible with an Internet ministry nor as an interim minister. I found that ministry and on January 1, 2016 I became the Senior Minister of this wonderful church, Unity Church in Albany.

In addition to being a Unity minister, I am twice ordained as a Zen Buddhist monk: bodhisattva and bhiksuni, and have served as a dharma teacher for Dharmakaya Buddhist Association in Kansas City, MO.

 

Rev. Roger Mock, Music Director

Roger has a lifetime of experience in church music ministry, starting back in high school days where he helped to form a contemporary ‘folk’ choir in his local Catholic parish in Little Falls, NY. His college years were spent in the Capital District at Siena College and the College of St. Rose (from which he graduated with an Art Education degree and where he later pursued musical studies). During college he continued his music ministry at St. Vincent de Paul Church in Albany eventually becoming music director and serving that parish for two decades.

Though raised in the Roman Catholic Church (and still having a great love for that religious tradition), Roger’s own spirituality has long been rooted in a wider understanding and experience of the Divine – that it finds expression in the full breadth of humanity’s religious traditions.

The Unity movement has been a natural fit for him and, since about 2004, Roger has been serving as a minister of music here at Unity of Albany. He brings with him significant skills as a song leader, worship leader and instrumentalist (guitar, hammered dulcimer, mandolin) as well as an ability to draw a group of musicians together as a unified, harmonious channel for spiritual ministry.

In June, 2015, Roger completed a year of studies at All Faiths Seminary in New York City and was ordained as an interfaith minister.

 

Jane Bloom, Youth & Family Ministry

It is with great sadness that we report that our dear Jane Bloom passed away on Sunday, June 24, 2018.
unityalbany.org/2018/06/29/jane-bloom-we-will-remember-you/

Jane is a Licensed Unity Minister and heads up our youth program. She coordinates Sunday morning youth education, overseeing facilitators and establishing a living curriculum. Under Jane’s leadership we have a caring, compassionate, loving program that nurtures the Christ presence in our children and embraces individuality through instruction and activities in Unity Principles.

Our vision is to empower children and youth to use their spiritual wisdom to fulfill their soul’s purpose; to empower parents to see themselves as the primary spiritual educators of their children and youth; and to empower facilitators to see education as a process, through which they effectively support the unfolding of the child’s spiritual nature and model the living of the spiritual principles.

See our Youth & Family page

Board of Trustees

Karin Reinhold, President
Dave Ferrill, Vice-President
Sally Decheine, Secretary
Paul Frament, Treasurer
Peggy Kaufman, Trustee 
Sam House, Trustee
Gretchen Nortz, Alternate

 

Karin Reinhold, President

Karin says that “what feeds my spirit is the many ways spirituality is in my life via the community of this church, the practice of yoga, the readings from A Course in Miracles, and other inspired books and traditions.”  She currently leads the Course in Miracles group on Sunday nights at Unity.  She keeps looking for ways to deepen her connection to God and to expand her range into ever-increasing awareness and expression of who she is.  She also supports the Albany Peace Project, now named the Global Peaceful Cities Project, as the statistician, designing studies and analyzing data for the project.

Karin is an associate professor of mathematics at the University at Albany.  She has taught math for over 25 years at all levels.  She is also currently finishing a 3-year term of service in the University senate.

Karin has a daughter who recently graduated from college.  She lives with a loving companion who, Karin says, “is brave enough to step with me into new ways of seeing the world.”  They live with 3 “idiosyncratic” cats.  They love movies, science, innovation, and going on hikes.  Having been born in Argentina, Karin loves to dance the tango whenever she gets a chance.

Dave Ferrill, Vice-President

Dave has been a member of Unity Church in Albany for over 20 years.  He was drawn to Unity by the concept of the indwelling divinity of all persons. Unity offered a faith community to deepen his spiritual life in a significant way.  Early on, he served on the church board and was president during a difficult but successful ministerial transition, helping to restore a solid spirit-filled community from a place of brokenness.  He has also served on the boards of other nonprofit organizations.

Unity is his spiritual home, always there as sustenance for his journey.  Over the years, Dave has served in several capacities at Unity.  Currently he is serving, as he has for many years, as a reader on the Daily Word recording team.  More recently Dave has been serving on the Prayer team, becoming a prayer chaplain in 2017.

Dave is a retired engineering manager with a post-retirement career as a substitute school teacher and personal fitness trainer.  He enjoys cycling, yoga, history, and travel. With his bike, he has participated in many fund-raising athletic events for health-related organizations, particularly the MS Society, and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.

Paul Frament, Treasurer

Paul has been attending Unity for 13 years and became a member in 2008. He works as a computer software consultant. Paul enjoys outdoor activities, including hiking, skiing, biking and he also coaches hockey. As a Unity volunteer, Paul has weeded, watered and trimmed our garden. He has previously been an alternate member of Unity’s Board of Directors, attending meetings and working on financial matters.

As a trustee, Paul believes he will be aware of the needs of all Unity members and be responsible for the long-term health of the Unity community. His priorities would be ensuring that services are well attended, membership is high, members are enthusiastic about our community, and our finances are in good shape.

Sally Decheine, Secretary

Sally first attended Unity in the 90’s, when Arthur Wells was the minister.  Although she attended for only a year or so at that time, she felt a strong connection to Unity teachings.  She began to explore other paths which led her to A Course in Miracles study group, which she participated in for 8 years.  Sally was moved to return to Unity about 5 years ago and became a member in 2016.

Sally has become active in the church and enjoys it greatly. She has volunteered with hospitality, and she is currently in charge of ushers/greeters.  She finds it very gratifying to connect with and welcome people to the church, and she looks forward to continuing to do so in that role and, hopefully, others.

Sally worked as a psychiatric nurse for over 30 years.  She then became a disability analyst with NY State which she did until her retirement in 2013.  Her skills include the ability to relate to others in a compassionate manner, to assess potentially difficult situations, and to manage crises.

Sally’s goals are to continue to develop as a person, to reach out more to others, to become more a part of the community, and to deepen her spirituality. Her interests include her family (daughters and granddaughter), location history, drumming, and her painting (specifically painting in oils and acrylics).

Peggy Kaufmann, Trustee

Peggy has been coming to Unity for more than 12 years, and became a member in 2014.  She began ushering soon after that, and upon retiring a year and a half ago, was able to become more involved with Unity.  Peggy took charge of the Christmas family adoption; she took the lead in making contact with FOCUS to pursue membership with them; she began volunteering in the office once a week; and started the Unity Social Action Committee.  Peggy also participates in the Building the Beloved Community group to heal racism. She collects donations for the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants (where she also volunteers once a week), and is now helping to organize the ushers.

Peggy’s focus in life, with the support of her loving wife and partner (who shares her passion), is to be of service, at Unity, and in the community.  In these difficult times, she finds it very important to work for positive change.

Sam House, Trustee

Sam has attended Unity for 16 years and has been a member for about 14 years. He is an executive coach and leadership development consultant, working in locations throughout the world. For 17 years, he worked as a social worker and psychotherapist. He is able to bring together diverse points of view and establish alignment in a life affirming and inspirational way. Raised as a doctor-going Christian Scientist, Sam has explored and continues to explore numerous spiritual paths, often finding alignment with Unity teachings. His goal is to live a spirit-filled, God-centered life; to be a “hollow bone” for spirit to work through him.

As a volunteer at Unity, he has been a consistent operator of the sound and light board for the past 4 years, ushered when needed for the past 12 years, assisted in church clean up days, and helped with clean up after special events. He has participated in The Quest program and the advanced Quest program. He would love to see our church have a larger family and child education focus. He believes that it is time to tithe his time and talent to the church that has fed him over the years in so many ways.

Gretchen Nortz, Alternate

Gretchen has been attending Unity for about 3 years and became a member in the fall of 2016.  Gretchen has had a lifelong interest in spirituality, even as a teenager.  But she was unable to find a faith community that felt like home, until she found Unity.  At Unity, Gretchen currently serves as an usher/greeter, and she is a member of the Service in CommUNITY committee.  She has also helped with clean up days.

Gretchen has worked in higher education since 1985, as a counselor, coordinator, senior academic advisor, and currently as a senior academic evaluator.  Her interests and accomplishments have been working with returning adult students at institutions that offer non-traditional educational opportunities.

Gretchen has done a variety of volunteer work in addition to her service at Unity, including Habitat for Humanity, Mohawk Hudson Humane Society, Regional Foodbank, Special Olympics, and a VA hospital brunch for Vietnam vets.  Gretchen’s interests include reading spiritual books, daily meditations, fiction and non-fiction.  In addition, she enjoys English country and international dancing, as well as folk music.  She is committed to living a healthy lifestyle, including exercise, eating well, meeting with a counselor, and attending Unity.

 

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