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New head of ChildServ

Following a unanimous vote of support, the ChildServ Board of Trustees is pleased to announce the appointment of Dan Kotowski as its new President and CEO. Kotowski will begin in his new role at the 120-year-old Chicago social service agency on October 5. Kotowski joins ChildServ after serving nine years in the Illinois State Senate…

Train passengers, including migrants, wait Sept. 2 at the Keleti pályaudvar station in Budapest in hopes of boarding trains to other countries in western Europe. Some, frustrated with waiting, scuffled with police outside the station, according to news reports.  Photo by Daniel Peters for UMNS

Prayer for the Refugee-Migrant Crisis

Recent news report that more than 16,000 migrants have streamed into Austria since the weekend and more than 17,500 people were received in Munich, Germany, alone. According to the United Nations Refugee Agency estimates, more than 366,000 refugees and migrants have crossed the Mediterranean Sea to Europe this year and at least 2,800 have died…

Migrants form a crowd at the Keleti pályaudvar train station Sept. 2 in Budapest while waiting passage to Germany, Austria and other wealthier countries within the European Union where the laws on refugee protection are better. Photo by Daniel Peters for UMNS

Responding to the Syrian Crisis

By Rev. Michael Mann Over the past two weeks, many congregations throughout the United States have vocalized their deep lament in response what has been called “the biggest refugee crisis since World War II” as nearly 4 million Syrian refugees have fled their country over the past few years. The Northern Illinois Justice For Our…

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The Coffee Connection

Tony Disney ventured to Chicago from California two years ago looking for a fresh start, a second chance. But it wasn’t an easy journey as he faced many barriers and little resources as an ex-felon who served time in prison. “There were many consequences as a result of my crime. I lost my career, my…

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A Time to Replenish

2015 Northern Illinois Annual Conference Report By Anne Marie Gerhardt, Dir. of Communications With imagery of water from baptismal fonts to beautiful artwork throughout the three days, heavy downpours outside and a worship theme of “Replenish,” Bishop Sally Dyck called those gathered at the 2015 Northern Illinois Annual Conference to “restore, renew, refresh and fill…

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Annual Conference approves legislation on Fossil Fuel divestment

The annual conference approved 23 petitions to send to the 2016 General Conference including; a much debated resolution on Fossil Fuel Divestment, recommendations to change the global structure of the church by renaming General Conference to Global Connectional Conference and reorganizing jurisdictions into regions, as well as deleting language in the denomination’s Book of Discipline…

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Annual Conference Awards

We have many dedicated laity and clergy in the Northern Illinois Conference. Each person is deserving of being acknowledged and thanks for their service. This year the following persons, churches and agencies have received recognition for outstanding service. The Bishop’s 2015 Ecumenical and Interrreligious Award: Rev. Dr. Pamela Lightsey       United Voices for…

young missionaries

Youngest lay missioners commissioned

At just 15 years old, Jesús Espinoza understands the power of prayer. Born in Mexico, he came to the United States two years ago with his mother and 11-year-old sister to join their father. Living and going to school in Elgin, he said he would pray over lunch in the school cafeteria. At the beginning the young people around gave him…

Bishop's Appeal

Bishop’s Appeal – Story of a dreamer

Second Chances: A story of a dreamer Min-Chul Suk came to the U.S. from South Korea with his parents in 1991, when he was 9. Min-Chul graduated from high school with a 4.2 GPA. He graduated from UCLA with a degree in microbiology, immunology, and molecular genetics. With the support of the Korean-American community, Min-Chul…

United Voices for Children

Urging Governor to reconsider budget cuts

And How Are The Children? “Children have only one childhood. Every day those children are being denied early education and nutritious food impacts their chances of living to their full potential. We must stand up for children across the country.” ~Marian Wright Edelman   Governor Rauner’s FY2016 budget proposes critical cuts to programs which serve…