1901-05 W WASHINGTON BOULEVARD, CHICAGO IL (312)243-7579 FAX (312)243-9484
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    GOD'S STORY OF PILGRIM REST OF CHICAGO

    There are quite a number of Christian flocks that call themselves Pilgrim Rest. However, there is only one Pilgrim Rest Missionary Baptist Church of Chicago. The truth is you are about to learn facts about a Pilgrim Rest that are unique to all other Pilgrim Rests.

    In 1928, at the home of Deacon and Sister Aaron Shinairel, Pilgrim Rest was inaugurated when as a small group of baptized believers in Christ gathered with Pastor Will Jones. The name Pilgrim Rest was recommended by Mother Millie Parker.
    Pilgrim Restís first location was at Hermitage Avenue, near Roosevelt Road. Upon losing our Hermitage Avenue church headquarters in a mysterious fire, the church was led by Pastor Clemmons as we searched for a new headquarters. The search continued for a new headquarters under the leadership of Pastor Johnson and experienced a slow increase in membership as we constantly moved from meeting place to meeting place. Pilgrim Rest moved from the Branch Funeral Parlor on Blue Island Avenue to a headquarters located at 1249 West Roosevelt Road. While here God saw fit to replace Pastor Johnson with Pastor Joseph Stewart of Baldwin, Michigan. Under the leadership of Pastor Baldwin, the church experienced a decline in membership that tempted some members of Pilgrim Rest to merge with another flock. Deacon Will Gore convinced Pilgrim Rest to avoid the merger. Less than half of the remaining ten member flock gathered for prayer without a choir or pastor. In April 1937, a minister named Matthew Thomas accepted God's call to pastor our ten member flock, initially, without a salary.

    Pastor Thomas led the congregation into a headquarters at 1822 West Roosevelt in 1939 as God increased our membership, enabling us to purchase a headquarters at 1729 West Washburne. In 1941, our membership increased under the leadership of Pastor Thomas. Pilgrim Rest prospered to such a degree that, in the name of Christ, we raised $25,000.00 for the purchase of a larger headquarters to accommodate our growing flock. In 1949, we marched into a headquarters located at 1901-05 West Washington Boulevard on Chicago's Greater Westside that we beautifully remodeled. Pilgrim Rest experienced continuous increase until 1985. Pastor Thomasí good health declined until his homegoing on April 8th, 1987. He served Christ as our pastor for 50 years.

    Under the guidance of Deacon Alexander Dunn, Jr., Pilgrim Rest prayed to the Good Lord for a new pastor. In 1992, we welcomed our new leader, Pastor M. C. Russell. Unfortunately, our congregation experienced intense spiritual warfare for a season. On September 25th, 1993, we welcomed Al Lloyd as our seventh pastor.

    God sent Pastor Lloyd as Pilgrim Rest was gentrification changed the ethnic and socio-economic demographic of what once was our Henry Horner community. Our community was renamed West Haven, and most of our contiguous residents were relocated to suburban residents. Pastor Lloyd guided Pilgrim Rest toward a being a more servant-oriented congregation. We adopted the mission statement ďDoulos of ChristĒ based on Philippians 1:1. Pastor Lloyd has implemented many new ministries, including a church website. He has help Pilgrim Rest to face the impact of gentrification on Pilgrim Rest and her community.

    In the month of February 2012, Pilgrim Rest and their community were treated to a play in honor of civil rights pioneer Medgar Evers. Members of his family were present. We offer great chapter-by-chapter and topical Holy Bible studies each Wednesday morning and evening, along with prayer each Sunday morning and Wednesday evening. This year three of our brothers have been selected to serve as church tablewaiters in preparation to become ordained deacons. Pilgrim Rest is blessed to be able to continue to minister to the community and its vicinity with food and clothing. We also obey Christ in fulfilling His Great Commission by spreading His Good News to souls once lost. As we contend with this bureaucratic maze that is our world, we are grateful for Godís guidance as we exercise the great blessing and privilege of casting our votes for governmental leadership. We are pledging to honor our Lord and those who came before us by properly maintaining our current place of worship. We honor and celebrate the lives of the seasoned saints of our Christian family whom God has called home. We count their days as golden, their nights by stars and their lives by smiles.

    Pilgrim Rest also celebrates her associate preachers who have gone on to pastor other flocks. They include pastors Clarence Hopson (Broadview), the late James Harvey (El Bethel), Marcus Beckham (New St. John), Marvell Beckham (Gospel Temple), Charles Gordon (Covenant Chapel), Columbus Ewing (Community Fellowship), and Charles Roberson (Original Rising Star). Pilgrim Rest is one of Godís kingdom congregations. Our main goal is to please God according to 2 Corinthians 5:9!

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