Join us in repeating our building affirmation:
“We give thanks that Unity on the Bay’s right and
perfect future home is manifesting under the guidance of God.”
Update as of August 2, 2018
Dear Friend of Unity on the Bay,
For the past four years, Unity on the Bay has been moving toward a vision for a new home that was originally birthed as a part of a strategic plan initiated in 2013.
June 4, 2015, became an auspicious day in the 90-year history of our community when the overwhelming majority of members present voted to approve a recommendation to sell our current property, utilizing funds to create a new home for our ministry as we move forward in faith toward the next chapter of our ministry’s long life.
Since then we have been working to move the sale to successful conclusion, a process that has taken far longer than originally anticipated. Based on conversations with the buyer, we anticipate a closing late this year or early next and now are able to turn to the search for a future site.
The goals of this process are to acquire or develop a facility that fulfills our vision, secure the financial future of Unity on the Bay, and achieve a seamless transition to a new property with minimal interruption.
Each day we grow closer to the manifestation of the vision that originated after a lengthy process that engaged congregants, leadership and staff:
- A highly-utilized community center open to all of Miami and beyond.
- A peaceful meeting place for prayer and meditation that includes green space, water features, and relaxing ambiance.
- A haven of spiritual liberation and celebration for gatherings of people of all faiths on Sundays, Wednesdays and other times -- meeting the need for flexibility in today’s busy world.
- An oasis of inspiration suitable for retreats.
- A premier spiritual venue of enlightenment offering special events, lectures, classes and workshops.
- A place for children’s education.
- A home to the performing arts.
- A center for the healing arts; Reiki, yoga and others.
- A comfortable retail environment in which to find connection with others, spiritual books and gifts.
- A coffee and food service venue for community and fellowship.
- A meeting facility that supports worldwide media with state of the art technology.
We are currently researching prospective locations, including some ideas and options brought to us by congregants. Our objective is to identify the right and perfect location. As part of the the next steps, we will continue to engage the congregation in planning for our future home together with our architectural firm.
We remind you that the final decision for our new home is subject to a vote open to all members. As has been our practice in the past, we will undertake congregational communication forums prior to a membership meeting, and advance notice will be provided to all those who wish to be present at the membership meeting in which the vote will be taken.
We encourage you to keep this historical time in our community’s life embraced in your prayers, knowing that the very spirit of God is orchestrating our inevitable success. Thank you for your love and support of Unity on the Bay.
In spiritual unity,
President, Board of Trustees
Rev. Chris Jackson,
Update as of June 1, 2018
Dear Friend of Unity on the Bay,
It’s been awhile since we updated you on the status of our property sale. You may know that the membership of our spiritual community recently approved a slightly reduced sale price. This was the result of a survey that revealed the property was a bit smaller than what was in the public record, reducing the number of units that can be built on the property. The membership approved the adjustment with the vast majority voting to support the offer during the membership meeting. We remain deeply grateful for yet another confirmation of the mutual love, trust and respect that our community stands for.
The buyer has notified us that they anticipate a closing by the end of this year. The Board of Trustees is moving rapidly to identify a new site and will soon present a plan to the congregation. The Board is also moving forward in forming committees and teams to support us in the creation of our future home. After the current property is sold, we will remain at the current site for up to nine months. It is the goal of the Board of Trustees to move directly from our current property to a new facility without a temporary, transitional location in between. It is an ambitious goal, but one we believe is possible.
While the proceeds from the sale of our property will be significant, we want to emphasize that no funds will be received until the closing is complete. It is important to understand that these funds will not to be used for the day-to-day operations of Unity on the Bay, but are earmarked for the purchase and development of a new property, transitional expenses, and the creation of an endowment to secure the future of Unity on the Bay.
We mention this because some congregants have informed us that they have reduced or discontinued their financial contributions because they incorrectly believed that we had already received millions of dollars from the sale of the property. In fact, we have incurred significant additional expenses in legal fees. And we will begin to incur architectural and other fees related to the purchase and planning for the new site.
This is happening while tithes and offerings are down this year and last. In 2017, we experienced a $180,000 reduction in tithes and offerings, resulting in an operating deficit. We have made staff reductions and increased facilities and parking rentals to help compensate and we would much prefer to avoid any additional cuts.
Thank you for holding your spiritual community in prayer during this historic time and for continuing to move forward with us in faith. As you feel guided, please consider the personal value of our community in your life and consider increasing your support to sustain our ministry during this time of transition.
If you have any questions, please direct them to firstname.lastname@example.org
In spiritual unity,
Eddie Dominguez, President
Board of Trustees
Rev. Chris Jackson, Senior Minister