River City Celebrates New Building with Grand Opening

CHICAGO, IL (November 17, 2014) — River City Community Church, a Covenant congregation on the West Side of Chicago, celebrated the grand opening of its new building on Saturday, November 8, with an open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony.

The new building was once a mattress warehouse.

The new building was once a mattress warehouse.

During his final sermon at the old location, a rented church in the Logan Square neighborhood, Pastor Daniel Hill quoted Isaiah 56:7, saying he hopes to see the space become a “house of prayer for all nations,” a place where all people would be welcomed and have a space to encounter Jesus in deep and meaningful ways. Hill also said he hopes the building will be a safe space for children who, according to area school staff and parents, do not feel safe in the neighborhood.

Children got their faces painted during festivities. Photo credit: Charlie Billups

Children got their faces painted during festivities.
Photo credit: Charlie Billups

Church members made a special effort to invite families of students at the nearby elementary school to the open house. The church has been partnering with the school for several years. Kids played in the bounce house that was set up in the half-gym, received specially commissioned balloon creations, and had their faces painted. Local community organizations were also invited to come share information about their work in the neighborhood and throughout Chicago.

Wilfredo De Jesús, who is pastor of a nearby Assembly of God congregation and who was named by Time magazine one of the 100 most influential people in the world for his influence on Latino populations, offered a prayer of dedication.

Antoine Taylor, who heads ministry operations for the church, said that church staff have been developing relationships with businesses and other organizations in the low-income neighborhood. He hopes the building will be a resource for businesses, organizations, and other ministries to support their own work in the community.

The building was previously a mattress warehouse and was purchased by the church in 2010. Funding for the remodel came in part from a loan through National Covenant Properties, as well as a $500,000 grant from Illinois Clean Energy to install renewable-energy systems.

For more on the church’s incarnational approach to ministering in the community, click here.




  • What vision! Clearly this church is working to bring the whole gospel to a community in all of its needs! David Benner in his book Care of Souls states: “Efforts to separate the spiritual, psychological, and physical aspects of persons inevitably result in a trivialization of each. . . . This does not mean that one or another aspect of personhood cannot be our primary focus. It does mean, however, that soul care that is worthy of its name should always nurture and care for the person’s inner psychospiritual life while attending to the ways in which this life is lived out and influenced by physical and external realities. (p. 62-3)”

    I have a collection of books and other materials from years of directing a hospital after-school tutoring program some years ago. I would be pleased to donate them to this work if there is interest in them.

  • What wonderful news! I love how Christ’s body is coming together and we are not just denominationally bound! May this place be the tabernacle, the home of God, in the midst of this neighborhood. National Covenant Properties is the best investment tool ever! Praise the Lord.

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