Our Vision

Creating the Beloved Community together!

The Beloved Community is a global vision envisioned by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as a society where all people share in the wealth of the earth creating authentic community. It is a vision achieved through nonviolent resistance of the injustices that divide us and proactive commitment to right relationship with each other. It means that no one is left out of creating the community, so we go out of our way to center the people who our systems often exclude. For us at New Life Centers, that means especially centering the leadership and voices of young people in our communities.

Young people and their families connecting with Christ and Community through restorative justice, safe spaces and life-on-life relationships.

Within each community we serve, New Life Centers seeks to walk with this generation to transform the next. Listening to our neighbors’ stories and requests, we work alongside community partners to create solutions that fit our neighborhood. We desire to host Centers to which neighbors can continually come with needs or ideas that transform their community. We envision a city where joyful, productive families, supported by the community, equip young people and neighbors with the vision and skills to live in fullness of life. We are inspired by 1 Thessalonians 2:8 that says, “we cared so much for you that we were willing to share with you not only Creator’s good story but our own lives as well. That is how deep our love for you has become.”

Our Mission

Our History

15+ years serving our communities

While now serving as a nationwide model for gang intervention and citywide model for after-school programs, New Life Centers of Chicagoland, NFP was originally created in 2005 to address the needs of the neighbors surrounding locations of New Life Community Church. As neighbors approached the church with pressing issues–youth violence, gang violence, teen pregnancy, justice system involvement, unemployment–New Life responded with custom-made Centers programs that fit the community. Initial sites grew in the Little Village and Midway neighborhoods (2005). Subsequent programs sprang up at Humboldt Park (2008), Cicero, Jefferson Park, and Oak Forest. To this day, New Life Centers continues in its culture of creating programs that address expressed neighborhood need and empower neighborhood involvement, rather than the normal social service pattern of initiating programs based on funding availability.

New Life Centers was founded by the New Life Community Church, a multi-site church operating at 20 sites throughout Chicagoland and internationally. Founded in 1986 as an 18-member church in Chicago’s Back of the Yards neighborhood, New Life (Nueva Vida) still exists under its founding pastor, Pastor Mark Jobe, and now hosts over 34 services weekly. Together these sites pursue an aggressive growth movement known as the 20-20 vision. Within this vision are planned 40 new church locations in Chicagoland and 10 new locations internationally. As an auxiliary partner organization, New Life Centers seeks to equip leaders within each of these New Life communities to serve their neighbors through health, education, and employment services for all ages.

Humboldt Park joined the New Life family with a history all its own. The Humboldt Park site, 1410 N. Springfield Ave., was founded in 1898 as Bethel Evangelical Lutheran Church and School. Serving the community for over 100 years, Bethel made neighborhood gym outreach and children’s programs a priority. “Bethel Family Programs” expanded exponentially, joining the New Life family when Bethel’s generous members gifted their facility to New Life Community Church in 2008.