Prayer Chaplains

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The Prayer Chaplains are there to pray with you on an individual basis after the Sunday celebration in-person at the Victorian or on Zoom. All prayers are kept in strict confidence. With your permission, your request can be sent to our separate prayer group of 10-12 individuals for additional prayer. Visit our "Power of Prayer" page.



Martha Aivaz

Prayer Chaplain - 805-481-1335

I was introduced to Unity in the late 1980’s. I was hooked on the teachings of the Fillmore’s, co-founders of the Unity movement. At Unity of Naples, FA I was a Sunday school teacher for five years.

In 1990, I moved back to San Luis Obispo county. Upon my arrival, I immediately became a member of San Luis Obispo Unity. Served as a Sunday school teacher, graduated as a Licensed Unity teacher August 4, 1996.

In 1999, Patty Moralles, Therese Solimeno, and I co-founded Unity-Five Cities. In approximately 2006, I retired as Spiritual Leader. Began serving as a Prayer Chaplain in 2016.


Sheila Cochren 

Prayer Chaplain  619-540-0665

I was a member of the Alpine Church of Spiritual Living from 2007-2017 in San Diego and served as secretary on the board for 5 years. I also took a Science of Mind class. I moved to San Luis Obispo in March of 2017 to be closer to my daughters and my grand children. I attended SLO Unity for about a year before finding my home here at Unity 5 Cities in late 2018.  The Unity Principles all resonate with me and I am a firm believer in positive affirmations and the power of prayer.  I felt a calling to take the training to become a prayer chaplain and it has enriched my spiritual practice.  I am honored and blessed to serve our church in this capacity. 


Rita Conrad

Prayer Chaplain, 510-898-8514

My husband Larry and I were married at Unity of Mesa in Arizona over 35 years ago by Rev. Joel Baehr, who worked closely with Eric Butterworth and who was the originator of the colors associated with each of the 12 Powers. The atmosphere of that church set a solid foundation in Unity and New Thought that has been a part of us for most of our adult lives.

After we concluded our professional careers and moved to the Central Coast in 2020, my spiritual life began to expand in unplanned ways. I began speaking at church and taking Spiritual Education and Enhancement courses through Unity Worldwide Ministries. This put me on the path to becoming a Licensed Unity Teacher, which I will complete in Fall, 2024.

I have a deep appreciation for the work of the Fillmores, Unity principles and practices. My life has been changed with each of the callings that have come and been answered. The call to be a Prayer Chaplain was one that refused to be ignored and it has led me to see even more clearly the Divine Light that shines in and through each of us. I am blessed to have the opportunity to pray with you.

Deborah Hall

Deborah Hall-Sandor

Prayer Chaplain  805-788-4777

I moved to Arroyo Grande 3 years ago from Coarsegold, a town in Southern Yosemite, 30 miles north of Fresno, California.  I have no formal religious background.  However, in 2015, a friend suggested I might enjoy attending services at the Positive Living Center in Oakhurst, CA.  The Positive Living Center supports personal growth and wholeness through prayer, meditation, and healing energy.  It is a community of people who join together to grow and expand spirituality in the conscious awareness and expression of the presence of God or Divine Spirit.  I was fortunate that the wonderful Rev. Dr. Angelo Pizelo, was the Senior Minister.  His pastoral care included stress reduction, grief counseling, affirmative prayer, and as founder of the Emerson Institute, New Thought Education.  I embraced his teachings and through the late Rev. Joann Burgess learned meditation.

The Unity Church has provided me with a path to continue that spiritual journey.  When I saw the request for Prayer Chaplains, I felt a calling to participate not only to support others but also to celebrate the God Divine Spirit in each of us and allow that experience to take us forward. I look forward to meeting and praying with you in moments of need as well as celebration or to just take time to share a mutual feeling of divinity.

Ruth Jackson

Ruth Jackson

Prayer Chaplain  805-451-1313

Many years ago I was born in Washington, D.C. and moved multiple times before settling in Santa Maria.  I have remained in Santa Maria for 24 years. 

I have two wonderful daughters and four grandchildren.  My daughters are Jill Roberts, who you know because she attends here at Unity Five Cities, and Jody Balian who lives in Arizona.

Growing up no matter where I lived my family always found a Baptist or Methodist Church to attend.   I was introduced to Religious Science in El Monte, California around 1965.  I have attended several different Religious Science Churches.  With no Religious Science Church in Santa Maria I attended Unity Santa Maria around ten years ago.  Just before my husband passed away I saw an ad for Unity Five Cities and has been attending for the past four or five years.

In my working years I worked for several not-for-profit organizations and then I was a Rehabilitation Counselor for the State of California.  I served mostly adults who were Deaf or Hard of Hearing and students who had a disability who were transitioning out of High School into College or seeking employment.  I retired 02/20/2020…and adapted quickly to retirement!

I’ve had three…soon to be four…articles published by Dynamic Aging Magazine.  You can read them at

Ethel Landers

Ethel (Tink) Landers  

Prayer Chaplain  805-550-0348

Three years ago,  I rededicated my life to being a conduit of good. Since then I’ve been on a path of expanding my spiritual knowledge and understanding while dedicating specific time to twice- daily prayer and meditation.  I’ve witnessed miracles throughout my life but now I see and feel them even more. God definitely works in mysterious and miraculous ways. Becoming a prayer chaplain allows me to grow even more while helping facilitate God’s miracles for others.


Lisa Leonard

Prayer Chaplain – 916-765-1846

I moved to the central coast from Roseville, CA in December of 2021 after a life changing event led to a spiritual awakening and a recommitment of my life to seek God and serve others.  Through prayer, meditation, study, and divine guidance, my life is now filled with joy and gratitude, as I experience the endless possibilities with letting go and letting God.  Dedicating myself as a prayer chaplain is a calling to put more affirmative prayer out into a world that so desperately needs it. It is a privilege and an honor to hold sacred space with others.

Jill Roberts 2

Jill Roberts

Prayer Chaplain  (805) 451-2886

Jill Roberts is currently a chaplain lay person at Unity-Five Cities and a long-time volunteer and worker with teens and youth groups. She occasionally leads workshops involving both adults and youth in the use of guided meditation and collaborative writing, and involves herself in Inter-faith gatherings; she is accepted and accepting. She holds a B.A. in Media Communications , and is completing a Masters  to continue deepening work in Special Education.


Therese Solimeno

Licensed Unity Teacher  805-440-9461

Since earning my LUT credential in 1998, I've experienced first-hand the power of meditation and affirmative prayer in affecting real and lasting change in our lives.  Sometimes we need someone to talk to who will help us remember our own divinity and facilitate breakthroughs with temporary personal challenges.  And sometimes we just need to clarify our own thoughts and feelings with someone who'll listen and pray with us.  Chaplains are here for that purpose, and it is my honor and privilege to walk with you on your journey.