PORT RICHEY — In a dim, lilac room, Jeanne Mac massaged a woman's foot, feeling for troubles and listening to what this woman's energy was telling her. "I can feel your sinuses are kind of congested," Mac said and the woman, Cheryl Prentice, agreed.
Mac told her to put Vicks' VapoRub on her feet before going to bed, then socks to cover, and in the morning she'd feel better. As she worked on Prentice's feet, she doled out reams of advice: cinnamon oil to balance adrenal glands, a drink of apple cider vinegar and honey in hot water to stay in balance and more.
Mac is a reflexologist at the Metaphysical Fair at Unity Truth Center in Port Richey on Saturday afternoon. Reflexology is the practice of applying pressure to areas of the feet to promote health and keep the body and mind in balance.
Mac lives in Hudson and has been a reflexologist since 1987, though she's been doing this since she was a child, before she knew there was a name for what she was drawn to. During a session, she'll say to no one, "I hear you, I hear you" as if a client's body is hollering out for, say, nutmeg. Mac would then rummage in her container of oils. She said she doesn't exactly see visions when she's working. It's more like a little voice, telling her what a person needs to feel better.
Mac was just one of many practitioners at the fair. There were mediums, psychics specializing in past lives, astrologists, reiki healers, readers of tarot cards and a medical intuitive.
The Rev. Barbara Williams is the minister at Unity Truth Center. She said this is the first Metaphysical Fair the church has offered and it was for fun — and also a way to introduce newcomers to the center.
Williams said the church is Christian and follows the teachings of Jesus Christ. But the God they believe in is one of acceptance and love — not fear. According to the international Unity Web site, www.unityonline.org, it says "Unity is a not-for-profit organization based on the teachings of Jesus and the healing power of prayer" and that it was founded in 1889. Williams said her Unity church accepts all people. She found Unity in her late 20s. "It felt like coming home," she said.
Then, in addition to working full-time and raising her children, she studied and went through training to become a minister — including two years at Unity's headquarters in Missouri. She and her family still live in St. Petersburg, but Williams travels to her church in Port Richey four times a week. Sunday sermons also include meditation and prayer healing. Soon they will be studying Eckhart Tolle's best-seller, A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose.
"God is within us and around us," Williams said. "We help you to tune into that part of all of us."
Erin Sullivan can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 909-4609.