UUMS Celebrates the birthday of Rev. Dr. Ruth Mosley
Rev. Dr. Ruth M. Mosley was in her 90th year when she became an ancestor, but her spirit is as alive today as it ever was. Her spirit has lit a flame which will eternally burn brightly within the worldwide movement, within the students, alumni, faculty, administration, board of directors and supports of Unity Urban Ministerial School, and within the board and congregation of West Side Unity Church, among her kin in Olive Branch, Mississippi, among citizens and leaders in Detroit, and among people of faith everywhere!
Rev. Dr. Ruth M. Mosley had many characteristics eerily prescient of the Biblical Ruth—she was humble, selfless, sacrificial, hard-working, charming, obedient, sweet, honorable, and visionary.
The Biblical Ruth gave birth to Obed, who was the father of Jesse, who was the father of David, who was the great-great-great grandfather of Joseph—the patriarchal sire of Jesus.
Rev. Ruth gave birth to three children, to West Side Unity Church, to Unity Urban Ministerial School, and to the Urban Ministry Movement that was transformed and transcended the Christian world to new heights, new insights, and deeper understandings!!!
Rev. Ruth partnered with Jesus in all things as she affirmed her various roles as pastor, institution builder, scholar, civic leader, board chair, media broadcaster, professor, mentor extraordinaire, and role model.
Rev. Ruth became an icon in the Unity Movement, and an iconic civic leader in the City of Detroit. She was part of Mayor Coleman Alexander Young’s “Kitchen Cabinet,” a leader with the City Council President Erma Henderson’s Women’s Conference of Concerns, and an insider with Martha Jean the Queen’s Advisors.
Rev. Ruth Mosley and Rev. Johnnie Colemon were the two most recognized Black clergy in Worldwide Unity. Rev. Ruth remained connected with Unity—ushering hundreds of Urban Ministers into pulpits around the world and leading the effort to encourage urban dwellers to embrace the power within. This is the power that Rev. Ruth understood from childhood, when as a toddler the Lord directed her to alert her mother to a house fire. It is the power she understood as a youngster when she nearly drowned in a pond and the Lord directed her to pull herself to safety by pulling tall reeds. In later years, the Lord directed her to try another banker to finance the construction of West Side Unity after the first banker refused. After launching UUMS, the Lord led her to ensure the credentials of UUMS students by certifying the institution legally with the State of Michigan.
Always one to give voice to affirming her wishes, Rev. Ruth said she wanted “three services: one at home, West Side Unity, one at Unity Village.” She spoke it, and as we can all witness, her spoken wish became manifest.
We will forever cherish her legacy and we thank her for blessing the world with the anointing power of the Biblical Ruth! We know it is no coincidence that she was given the name Ruth at birth. And it is no coincidence that her name is the root of the principle she adhered to throughout her life—TRUTH!
Long live the legacy and spirit of Rev. Dr. Ruth M. Mosley!
Amen. And so it is.
by Rev. JoAnn Watson is Senior Minister at West Side Unity in Detroit, Michigan.