PIERCE, Joyce Fisher, transitioned peacefully from this life in Midlothian, Virginia on May 5, 2022. She was born in Peoria, Illinois, on February 21, 1933, the first daughter and fourth child of Edward John Paul Fisher and Edith Mabel Parker Fisher . Joyce is survived by three children, Craig Pierce of Corpus Christi, Texas (wife, Viktoria), Bruce Pierce of Mexico City, Mexico and Marcia Pierce of Richmond, Kentucky. She is also survived by her sister, Marcia Fisher Bailey of Ann Arbor, Michigan (husband, Robert Bailey). Joyce was predeceased by her husband, Raymond L. Pierce (d.1992); and three older brothers, Paul Fisher, J Bruce Fisher and F David Fisher.
Joyce lived a fulfilling life, experiencing many different paths before becoming a Minister in the Unity faith. She graduated from Jackson-Milton High School in North Jackson, Ohio, in 1950. She then completed her nursing certification at nearby Youngstown Hospital School of Nursing in 1954. She worked as a registered nurse (RN) from 1954 through 1971, heading surgical units as well as serving in operating rooms in Ohio, North Carolina and Texas. Joyce married Raymond L. Pierce in 1955, and together they welcomed into the world Craig, Bruce and Marcia Pierce. In 1975, Joyce earned a BA in Journalism at the University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP).
With her writing skills as well as her ability to inspire others, and her knowledge of hospitals after years of nursing, she shifted into public relations work for hospitals. She served first as the PR director at St Joseph’s Hospital (El Paso) from 1971 to 1980, after which she became PR director at Hotel Dieu Hospital (El Paso) from 1981 to 1987. She then chose to work as the PR Director for the El Paso Humane Society from 1988 to 1998, where they greatly increased their fundraising efforts, most especially through an annual telethon. While there, she also increased awareness of how to be kind to animals amongst schoolchildren through school programs and visits.
Joyce began her spiritual journey by studying Unity principles at Unity Church of El Paso. She became a licensed Unity Teacher during the early 1990’s, and in 1995, she became Spiritual Leader for the Unity Center of Las Cruces, New Mexico (1995 to 1998).
In 1998, Joyce matriculated to Unity School of Christianity in Unity Village, Missouri, graduating in June of 2000. In September of that year, Joyce became the Senior Minister of Unity of Bon Air (formerly Unity Christ Church of Bon Air). This position turned out to be “made in Heaven” for Joyce. She and her church congregation grew exponentially from a few dozen members to a membership of hundreds. Her drive and joy led to the construction of a beautiful new church building to serve the needs of its congregation. Several years later, Joyce retired as Senior Minister (June of 2018). Joyce was beloved by her congregation members as a lively, creative, inspiring and joyful spiritual leader. Joyce recently assisted in writing her memoir, “Being Joyced,” available now on Amazon.com.
On March 20 of this year (2022), a living celebration of Reverend Joyce was held at Unity of Bon Air, during which the church sanctuary was dedicated in her name as “The Reverend Joyce Fisher Pierce Sanctuary.” On that day the church also held a book signing for her memoir. Many members of the congregation were able to express their love and joy directly to her and to give back some of what she had given them throughout her 18 years of leadership at the church.
On Saturday, July 16, at 1 pm, a memorial service will be held at Unity of Bon Air. Reverend Mary Morrisey will be the officiant. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that ye make gifts to Unity of Bon Air in Joyce’s honor and memory.
Published by Richmond Times-Dispatch on Jul. 10, 2022.
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