Official Archives Summary of the UHSCA
Father George W. Hurley (February 17, 1884—June 23, 1943) is the founder of the Universal Hagar’s Spiritual Church Association. Father Hurley was raised in the Protestant tradition. His mother, Tina Hurley, began raising him as a Methodist, but after a few years they became Baptist. At the age of seven he began to preach and challenge the traditional Baptist doctrine. He was ordained at the age of 11. In 1897, Hurley declared the Spirit of God revealed to him his great Commission. After high school he went to Tuskegee Institute and Phelps Bible Hall Training School to receive ministerial training. Dr. E. J. Penny was Phelps’ dean and Father Hurley’s ministerial instructor.
By the time he reached his early 20s, Reverend Hurley was known, especially among southern Baptists, as a dynamic preacher and orator with a seeming special relationship with God. It was not just his ability to woo the crowd that made him popular; it was his ability to expound on the teachings of Christ in such a way that even the more uneducated members, which were many times the majority, were able to comprehend the lessons of the Gospel.
In 1918-19 Reverend Hurley met Father Elias D. Smith, founder of the Triumph the Church and Kingdom of God in Christ, which was founded on January 20, 1904, popularly known as the Triumph Church. He was spiritually moved by Father Smith and his teachings and consequently joined. After several years, he reached the level of Elder and the presiding Prince of Michigan, but became dissatisfied with the teachings of the Triumph Church. He disagreed with the way they taught the Bible and how some of the ministers purposely lacked clarity in their explanations of the Gospel to the congregation, among other things. (This possibly could be due to the fact that the Triumph Church began moving away from its original teachings after Father Smith passed away in January 1920 while on a trip to Addis Ababa Abyssinia.) After this he briefly joined the International Spiritual Church, but again he was not completely content.
On September 23, 1923 he founded the Universal Hagar’s Spiritual Association. Father Hurley was concerned with both racial and economic disparities. He created the Hagar’s School of Mediumship and Psychology (1924) and the Knights of the All Seeing Eye (1934 with Prince Thomas Surbadger) as extensions to the church.
Before his passing Father Hurley appointed Prince Thomas Surbadger as President of the Wisemen Board (Executive Board) and his wife Reverend Cassie Bell Hurley as pastor the National Headquarters. After his passing Mother Hurley was given the distinction of Successor. Princess Mary Hatchett of New Jersey took the helm of President in 1955 after Prince Surbadger’s passing and continued on when Mother Hurley made her transition in 1960.
Prince Alfred Bailey of New York became the fourth President after Mother Hatchett’s demise in 1977. In 1980, Prince Bailey passed and Princess Georgia Latimer of Michigan, the fourth child of Father & Mother Hurley, became the President. Princess Ida Lee Childs of Ohio took the reins in 1994 after Princess Latimer’s death. Princess Childs appointed Princess Shirley Aquart of New Jersey as Acting President in April 2005. Princess Aquart was later made President after the passing of Princess Childs in 2007.
The UHSCA has a number of objectives, including but not limited to—“to teach the deeper truths of God, to promote the study of the science, phenomena and philosophy of spiritual religion, and to develop the true spiritual life among its members so that all members…attain the highest state of spiritual experience in this life as true worshippers of God.” Father Hurley taught that God is man, man is God, and that God is spirit and in truth. He further taught that God dwells within each individual.
The UHSCA currently boasts over 30 temples and missions in 14 states—Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Wisconsin, Maryland, Virginia, South Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama. The present national headquarters/supreme temple is located at 555 South Oakwood Blvd., Detroit, Michigan 48217.
Rev. George H. Latimer-Knight
Chair of Archives Committee
Universal Hagar’s Spiritual Church Association