Agape: A Community of New Hope, was founded in 2015 by families whose belief systems are aligned with the Catholic Church but choose to worship apart from its hierarchy. We are not alone. Hundreds of other Intentional Eucharistic Communities have also become church for their members.
We welcome everyone including women called to ministry, the LGBTQ+ community, their families and friends, the divorced, the disillusioned, and those longing for an inclusive and sustaining way to worship.
Our regular place of worship is the chapel of a Unitarian church in Palatine, Illinois. During the pandemic, we share spirit-filled and music-rich weekly masses online. Our presiders are longtime priests and recently ordained women priests. In addition to our weekly masses, we celebrate the other Sacraments, including baptisms, weddings and funerals.
During each mass, we explore and discuss Scripture readings. We all share the Eucharistic prayers and bread and wine, just as the earliest Christians did when they gathered in members’ homes. You may attend our virtual mass at 5 pm (Central Time) each Saturday here.
We have a strong social justice component and members who work both inside and outside institutions created to serve the disadvantaged. Some of that support is collaborative – our community joined with the Greenlining Project that builds houses for minority Chicago residents – or unique, like making sandwiches for the homeless and collecting food and clothing for those in need.
If you are looking for an approachable and welcoming religious community where you can explore your spirituality more deeply while free from the restrictions of traditional church, please attend one of our services.