TV & Movies

Mary Cosby's Church Has Been A Source Of Family Drama

It led to an estrangement between her and her mother.

Mary Cosby from 'The Real Housewives of Salt Lake City' via Bravo's press site
Chad Kirkland/Bravo

When Mary Cosby's grandmother Rosemary died in 1997, the Real Housewives of Salt Lake City star inherited a bulk of her multimillion-dollar fortune, including the Faith Temple Pentecostal Church she founded in the late 1960s. The only condition? Mary had to marry her step-grandfather, Robert C. Cosby — something even she admits was odd. "Don't think it wasn't weird, because it was," she says on the show.

The couple wed in 1998, and Mary now serves as the church's first lady and an evangelist, presiding over services for Faith Temple's hundreds of congregants. In RHOSLC's third episode, costars Meredith Marks and Whitney Rose (along with her father, who's recovering from substance misuse) get a firsthand look at how Mary runs her high-energy services. The church also has a second location in Indianapolis, Rosemary's hometown, per Faith Temple's website.

According to a church history written by Robert Sr., who serves as the church's bishop, Rosemary left Indianapolis with her four small children in 1961, intending to walk from Kansas City, Missouri to Utah. They did walk a portion of the trip, but strangers along the way also housed and helped fund the family's journey until they reached Salt Lake City, where Rosemary immediately began hosting services in her home. She eventually founded Faith Temple Pentecostal Church in 1968.

Not everyone in the family was pleased about Mary inheriting the church, however. On RHOSLC, Mary described an estrangement from her mother over money, leading to Faith Temple splitting in two. Mary's mom — Rosalind Cazares — also accused Robert Sr. of fraud in both 1997 and 2007. According to The Salt Lake Tribune, Cazares alleged her mother's signature was forged on various deeds and mortgages, and Robert Sr. had fraudulently diverted her mother's assets. A jury eventually awarded the estate $1.2 million in damages, ordering Robert Sr. and Rosemary's Faith Temple business manager, Annie Johnson, to pay the money to Cazares.

Despite the family drama, Mary's now helped run Faith Temple for more than two decades.