Temple Ann Hayes is an ordained Minister of First Unity Church, a New Thought center in St. Petersburg, Florida. She is also the Spiritual Leader and CEO of First Unity Spiritual Campus, an Internationally Recognized Speaker, Radio Host, practicing Shamanic healer, and author of several books; including her critically acclaimed When Did You Die? Eight Steps to Stop Dying Every Day and Start Waking Up.
Named after her grandfather, Temple Ann Hayes was born in 1959 to a Southern Baptist family in Anderson, South Carolina. At the age of five, Temple had a spiritual awakening and knew at that young age that she was "different" and was being called into ministry. During these early years Temple found that she had a deep love for animals; frequently bringing orphaned or injured animals home with her. Rev Hayes states in her book that she "found God in nature, in music, and in the arts". Despite being told in the sixth grade that she would not amount to anything because she "talked too much"; Temple began to build her self-confidence through art, music, and sports. She began playing softball at the age of ten, and seventeen years later with a batting average of .686, Temple was nominated as an All-American and elected to the National Softball Hall of Fame in 1979. Amateur Softball Association of America.
Coming of age during the 1970s, Temple’s early beliefs and philosophies were heavily influenced by the conflicting tides of Civil, Women’s, Gay, Animal, and Religious Rights. In her early teens, Temple became involved in a same sex relationship. When this was discovered, she had to learn to lie to herself and others about her sexual orientation. She would successfully hold up that lie for decades. It was during this time she developed an addiction to alcohol that would eventually interfere with every aspect of her life. Until one day when Temple was twenty, and after multiple automobile accidents, arrests, and physical injuries, Temple was invited to a Unity Church in Greenville, South Carolina. That experience began a shift in her, and within a few years, she had moved to a new city, stopped drinking, and became involved in group therapy meetings.
Temple’s diverse background includes three years of military service in the United States Army Reserves and several years as a business owner. In 1991, she answered a long-standing call to the ministry and became a Church of Religious Science minister, moving to Florida to serve with various churches in Stuart, West Palm Beach, Sarasota and St. Petersburg. That same year, she launched herself as a motivational speaker and spent the next thirteen years traveling the United States and abroad for a variety of clients, including Procter and Gamble, Washington Mutual, State Farm Insurance, and Compaq.
In addition, Temple's motivation and pursuit of excellence led to numerous awards; including being elected to Outstanding Young Women of America in 1988; to the International Who’s Who of American Professionals in 1997; to the American Biographical Institute for Great Women of the 21st Century for 2006; and to the National Association of Professional Women in 2008. She has also been honored with the Footprints Award by the National Sigma Gamma Rho sorority for outstanding community service.
In 2007, after years of study with teachers that aided her spiritual growth, Temple became an ordained Unity Minister.
Rev Temple Hayes is now the beloved Spiritual Leader at First Unity Spiritual Campus in St. Petersburg, Florida where she is also Minister of First Unity Church. Rev Temple is also the founder of several grass roots organizations recognizing the rights of all living beings.
Ideas and teachings
Much of Temple Hayes' teachings focuses on spirituality and metaphysics and the philosophical underpinning that “God is good all the time for everybody” and every body includes all life — men, women, children, animals, nature, insects— and their inalienable rights to live fully and pursue their dreams regardless of their creed, their color, their nationality, their sex, their sexual orientation, or their religious affiliation. She believes it’s time for the religious right and the spiritual left to come together and embrace all God’s children and creations. "We teach people how to think, not what to think, and folks find that appealing," Hayes says. "But we do make sure to tell people that, while the mind is a powerful way to get what you want, you may face some pain along the way. Nothing comes easy." The general theme of her thoughts, like that of her favorite mystic and Sufi poet Rumi is essentially the concept of unity with God, and “though sometimes in life we’re challenged as we walk through the valley of the shadow of death, we need to remember it is but a shadow and the way out is the way through into the light. We can reconnect and live fully with our desire for oneness.”
Temple Hayes is recognized as a rising star in Unity and the New Thought movement.
“Dare to be great; awaken the greatness within.”
“Your dreams are waiting on you to come true.”
"This is the greatest moment that you and I have ever lived."