For Vivian Hopkins, prayer was not an occasional activity—it was a way of life.
“She lived her consciousness,” says her son John. “Mother didn’t believe—she knew.”
Vivian recently made her transition at the age of 93. In the last year of her life, “She would not get out of bed in the morning until she had counted all her blessings and thanked God for them,” says John. “If we came to get her too soon she would say, ‘I’m not finished yet.’”
Vivian was “a practicing prayer person,” he says. She was also deeply steeped in Unity, having first attended a Unity church at the age of 12, in Denver, Colorado. There, a Unity practitioner named Mrs. Ushery became Vivian’s teacher, especially in the practice of affirmative prayer.
“Mother would call Mrs. Ushery to have her pray with her when there was a need. Mrs. Ushery only wanted to know the individual’s name. She didn’t need to know any of the particulars. She knew that healing is all about consciousness,” says John.
Years later, when Mrs. Ushery passed away, Vivian began calling Silent Unity®.
“Our lives have been filled with miracles because of Mother’s consciousness and the precious prayers of Silent Unity,” John says.
He remembers two particularly powerful examples.
When he was growing up, the family owned a motel in Rawlins, Wyoming. One day while John was adjusting the gas water heater, it flashed. “It burned me and knocked me across the room. It burned off my eyebrows and my hair was on fire. I had burns from my hairline down to my neck,” he said.
John was in extreme pain as his parents drove him to the hospital. However, he remembers his mother telling him: “Now, John. You know this isn’t God. This isn’t what God does. Be still and quiet. God’s presence is here. There is no pain. God will take any pain away.”
He had second-degree burns and water blisters all over his face. But within 10 minutes, “I didn’t have any pain whatsoever,” he says. The doctors kept him overnight for observation. The nurses were told to give him pain medicine when he needed it. The next day he got up and went home, with no need for painkillers.
He remembers another miraculous incident:
“A family rushed into the motel and asked, ‘Where’s the hospital? We have a very sick baby.’ The hospital was five or six blocks away, and mother gave them directions. After a while they came back without the baby and asked for a room. They said they had to make some phone calls because the doctors told them the baby wouldn’t last the night.
“Mother went to a quiet place and called Mrs. Ushery. She said, ‘I have a baby we need to pray for.’ She didn’t even know the baby’s name.
“After making their phone calls, the couple went back to the hospital. The next morning, they came back with the baby. The doctors had said to them, ‘Take this baby and go. There’s nothing wrong with this baby. We don’t know why the baby’s alive, but we didn’t have anything to do with it. Take it and go home.’ So they checked out of the motel and went back to their home in Ohio.
“A few weeks later, mother got a card from the couple. It said, ‘We don’t know what or how, but we know that you had something to do with our baby’s healing. We don’t know what your religious beliefs are, but we are Catholic. We hope you don’t mind, but we had a Mass said in your name.’”
Vivian had an inner strength and spiritual presence shaped by her life’s experiences. At a young age, her mother had tuberculosis and Vivian was sent to live with various relatives. It was her great-aunt and great-uncle who introduced Vivian to Unity. She met her future husband at the Unity of Denver when she was just a young girl. Later, the two of them taught Sunday school at Unity. Vivian also taught Sunday school at the Divine Science church in Denver.
John also met his wife in Unity, raised his son Noah in Unity, and now attends Unity Columbine Spiritual Center in Colorado.
In addition, “We carry on the tradition of calling Silent Unity. We know prayer heals,” John says. “Mother would always say the old Unity line, ‘This or something better, God.’ When we get too immersed in the problem, we need a shift of consciousness, and that’s difficult to do on our own. When we call Silent Unity, it starts that shift in consciousness.”
John has been deeply affected by his mother’s spirit and the power of her prayerful presence. “She was a rock for everyone who knew her,” he says. “She was this peaceful, centered, solid person you could go to.
“Mother,” he says, “was connected.”