Community – Humanities

The Heifer Project

Each year the Temple invites members and friends to support the Heifer Project which, in a unique way, is engaged in efforts to end world hunger. A year ago, the congregation contributed some $10,600.

Heifer International is a nonprofit, humanitarian organization dedicated to ending world hunger and saving the Earth by providing livestock, trees, training and other resources to help poor families around the globe become self-reliant. Heifer requires its recipients to “pass on the gift” by sharing offspring of their livestock with others in need, thereby setting off a “chain of giving.”


Each fall, a “walking team” from the Temple joins hundreds of other Chicagoans in the annual Chicago CROP Walk. For the Temple, the goal is to raise $3,000 for CROP, the interfaith agency dedicated to “fighting hunger in Chicago and worldwide.” One of the Chicago recipients is the Marcy-Newberry Association. The Chicago Temple also serves as a way station serving drinks and snacks to participants. If you are interested in joining the walk or sponsoring a walker, call the Rev. Wendy A. Witt.


The Silk Road Theatre Project

This independent theatre company in residence at the Chicago Temple was formed to produce a series of dramas that would showcase playwrights of Asian, Middle Eastern, and Mediterranean backgrounds (the countries along the ancient “Silk Road” trading route). This is something that conspicuously is absent from the current American theater scene. Jamil Khoury and Malik Gillani, founders of the company, hope that such plays would portray the complex histories and perspectives of these cultures and challenge American stereotypes. This is especially urgent following the attacks on 9/11.

This relationship between the Chicago Temple and the Silk Road Theatre Project is unique but understandable considering our own congregation’s commitment to such multicultural and interfaith dialogue. We have hosted the interfaith Thanksgiving Service and the annual Memorial Service for the city and county. We are a venue for the Chicago Humanities Festival, often having presenters from around the world who give divergent views on significant topics. Occasionally, we have included people of other faiths in our Sunday worship services and Wednesday noontime services. While we are very certain of our Protestant Christian identity rooted in Methodism, we are open to critical thinking and challenging conversation.

For more information about the Silk Road Theatre Project, go to

Chicago Humanities Festival

Each year the Temple hosts numerous lectures, panel discussions, and readings as a participating venue for the Chicago Humanities Festival. SInce 1990, world-renowned authors, scholars, poets, policy-makers, artists, and performers have gathered at Chicago’s many cultural institutions to celebrate the power of ideas in human culture. And, each year tens of thousands of enthusiastic audience participants rediscover the rich and vital role the humanities play in their daily lives.

Temple Hosts Thirteen 12-Step Groups

Thirteen different kinds of 12-step groups meet regularly at the Temple.  Although not sponsored by the church, the groups reflect the church’s efforts to extend its hospitality to those in need.

The present cluster of groups include Narcotics Anonymous, Gamblers Anonymous, Al-Anon, Overeaters Anonymous and Alcoholics Anonymous. Please consult the individual groups for dates & times.