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Welcome to COS


Worship, Community, and Service since 1867

COS welcomes every kind of person - teenagers and seniors, married and single, wealthy and just getting by, city dweller and suburbanite, gay and straight. One unique aspect of COS is our long and happy history of welcoming households that are raising children in the city. We are already a multi-generational community, reflecting the Lincoln Park neighborhood.  COS is a traditional Episcopal Church, but one that is always sensitive to the questions and searches of individuals who need fresh answers to some of life’s oldest questions. Whether you're new to the Episcopal Church or you've been around it for a long time, COS will feel like home to you!

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Welcome to COS


Worship, Community, and Service since 1867

COS welcomes every kind of person - teenagers and seniors, married and single, wealthy and just getting by, city dweller and suburbanite, gay and straight. One unique aspect of COS is our long and happy history of welcoming households that are raising children in the city. We are already a multi-generational community, reflecting the Lincoln Park neighborhood.  COS is a traditional Episcopal Church, but one that is always sensitive to the questions and searches of individuals who need fresh answers to some of life’s oldest questions. Whether you're new to the Episcopal Church or you've been around it for a long time, COS will feel like home to you!

FOR NEWCOMERS

Coming to Church of Our Saviour for the first time? Here are the basics to make your visit comfortable and spirit-filled! CONTACT US with any questions.

  • There's free parking in our lot on the East side of the building (come in through the rear alley) as well as spots on Fullerton Parkway
  • Dress as you like- suits and dresses not required (but encouraged if that makes you happy)
  • Childcare is available for the 9am and 10:45 services in the lower level of the church (fun and safe)
  • All are welcome to sing along and take communion bread and wine (all ages, all faiths), but no one will pressure you if you're feeling shy
  • Our three services have different flavors, to make sure you find one you love:
    • 7:45am Spoken Service- simple and sacred, no music, morning sun streaming in through the stained glass, 40 min.
    • 9:00am Family Service- contemporary music, communion together around the altar, children welcome, 50 min.
    • 10:45am Choral Service- traditional music with full choir, incense, and sung communion service, 50 min.

getting married? we'd love to help- click here!

Keep in touch by joining our email newsletter here...

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History of COS


On Easter Sunday 1867 in a barn rebuilt as a makeshift Episcopalian place of worship, the first service of the ‘Chapel’ of Our Saviour took place.  ‘Church’ of Our Saviour continues that worship, today in a church completed in 1889; with a Prayer Book re-visioned in 1979; and with a complementary array of contemporary programs, educational opportunities for all ages, and a variety of outreach ministries. 

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History of COS


On Easter Sunday 1867 in a barn rebuilt as a makeshift Episcopalian place of worship, the first service of the ‘Chapel’ of Our Saviour took place.  ‘Church’ of Our Saviour continues that worship, today in a church completed in 1889; with a Prayer Book re-visioned in 1979; and with a complementary array of contemporary programs, educational opportunities for all ages, and a variety of outreach ministries. 

A Capsule History

1867—1889

The congregation formed after $500 was spent converting a barn into a small church to serve Chicago’s north side Episcopalians.  When the congregation grew, a small wood-frame church was completed in 1869 at the intersection of Lincoln, Belden and Orchard.  It served as a refuge for victims of the Great Chicago Fire in 1871. 

1889—1910

The current site of Church of Our Saviour was purchased and the church and rectory were completed in 1889.  (The parish hall building was already at 530 Fullerton Parkway and had served the Lincoln Park Presbyterian Church.)  It was a period of prosperity for the Lincoln Park neighborhood—all five of our stained glass windows were commissioned in this period, the first being a Tiffany window.

1910—1945

Two World Wars and the Great Depression played a direct role in the economic and social experience of the neighborhood around the church.  In the early 1940’s membership and parish finances had declined so significantly that Church of Our Saviour became a “mission” of the diocese for several years. 

1945—the Present

After World War II, new residents gradually returned to Lincoln Park and reclaimed its Victorian legacy.  The parish grew accordingly.  It has been at the forefront of progressive issues (sheltering 1968 DNC protesters; electing women to the vestry; supporting the Lincoln Park Community Shelter: welcoming women priests; and embracing gay Christians) all while preserving Episcopalian traditions and heritage. 

More complete histories are available from our parish archivist, Bruce Jones.

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Parish Ministers


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Parish Ministers


The Rev. Brian J. Hastings - Chief Pastor/Rector

Brian was born in a small city just west of Toronto, Canada, the eastern-most parish of the Diocese of Huron.  Although the family eventually moved right into the city, Brian was raised up for the priesthood and ordained in his home diocese.

Immediately after his ordination to the diaconate, Brian emigrated to the United States to join a community of Episcopalian Benedictine monks in Three Rivers, Michigan.  Parishioners (and anyone who’s listened to Brian’s homilies over the years) know that his five years of monastic experience gave him many decades of stories and reflections.

He left the monastery on Ash Wednesday 1985 and moved to Chicago.  He has served in several parishes on Chicago’s north side and throughout the Diocese of Chicago.  At the same time that his parish ministry began, he started a small practice in spiritual direction.  From the time he arrived, Brian was involved in a variety of community commitments, including the Aids Pastoral Care Network and Demico Youth Services in Cabrini Green.

In 1990 he left full-time parish work to emphasize spiritual direction.  He served as an honorary assistant at St. James’ Cathedral and did interim and supply work around the diocese.  Brian is a popular retreat leader and has led clergy, vestry, individual and small group retreats throughout the United States and Canada.

His retreat work at the DeKoven Foundation in Racine Wisconsin led to his invitation to sit on their Board of Directors.  Conserving the remarkable heritage of its buildings and history of service to the Episcopal Church, yet seeking a new and vigorous ministry for the site in the 21st century is a current passion of his.

Brian currently serves as Rector of Church of Our Saviour in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago.  He arrived in 1999 in a very part-time capacity and was elected Rector in 2008.  Like DeKoven, COS has both a remarkable architectural and ‘people’ heritage.  He and the congregation are equally energized about moving this heritage into the future.

Brian and Roger Gumm have been life-mates for over 27 years.  Together they helped raise two daughters, who are now both married with children of their own. Bicycling, walking their Cairn Terrier (the famous Ripley) and tending a young vineyard rounds out Brian’s life.

The Rev. Jess Elfring-Roberts- Deacon/Director of Children and Family Ministry

Jess is a native of the Chicago area, growing up in St. Charles. She received her BA from Columbia College in Chicago focusing on Acting and Comedy. Jess was ordained a vocational deacon in January of 2013. Currently she serves on the Bishop's staff at the Diocese of Chicago as Assistant for Youth Ministry. Jess also serves on the Deacon Leadership Team at the Diocese as the Discernment member. She is a certified outdoor education teacher and ropes course facilitator. Jess is a founding member of Improv for Change, an improv skills workshop for businesses and non-profits.  In her spare time she enjoys playing guitar, writing sketch comedy, filming movies, home brewing, and loves the Chicago Bears.

Jess and her wife Rebecca have a Border Collie (Ella) and a "lion" main coon (Tonks). They are expecting their first child in August 2015.

Music Ministers - 9AM Family Service/Contemporary Music

Mike and Cate Mascari

Michael and Cate Mascari began their careers as Episcopal Musicians at Grace Episcopal in New Lenox, IL, shortly after they were married in 2001.  After moving to Chicago in 2006 they were blessed to be welcomed into the COS community, where they initially provided music for the 5:30pm service, but now are working to develop the music ministry for the ever-evolving and growing 9:00am service.  The Mascari’s live in the Lincoln Square community with their children, Ariana and Leith and their shih tsus, Dusty and Gina.  Cate, an Australian-born bassoonist, vocalist and pianist, holds Bachelor and Master’s degrees in Band and Choral Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and currently teaches choir at Lake View High School in Chicago Public Schools.  Michael, a vocalist, cellist and guitarist, has a Bachelor of Orchestral Music Education from the University of Illinois and teaches orchestra at Whitney M. Young Magnet High school in Chicago Public Schools.  Michael also runs a martial arts dojo in Lincoln Square where he teaches traditional Samurai Jujutsu and Ninpo. 

Music Minister - 10:45 Choral Service

Jim Mouw - Organist / Choir Director

James Mouw joined COS as Organist and Choirmaster in August 2012. Jim has previously served parishes in Kalamazoo MI and Rutherfordton NC. In the Chicago area he has been Organist/Choirmaster at Trinity, Chicago; Trinity, Wheaton; and St. Paul’s, Riverside. Jim received his musical Training at Calvin College in Grand Rapids, MI, where his principal instructor was Katherine Lowe. When he’s not on the bench, Jim is the Associate University Librarian for Collection Services at the University of Chicago.

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Calendar of Events


Upcoming events at Church of Our Saviour

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Calendar of Events


Upcoming events at Church of Our Saviour

For more information or answers to your questions, feel free to CONTACT US!