Faith Partnerships

Strong partnerships with trusted community organizations - like Chicago's faith communities - allow the City to meet people where they are and connect them to COVID-19 vaccine resources. From the beginning, the support of faith leaders has ensured that all Chicagoans have access to lifesaving COVID-19 vaccines.

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Pastor Chris Harris speaks at the
Protect Chicago 77 Announcement 

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November 6, 2021

No matter where you live, or how you worship – prayer is universal. 

On Saturday, November 6, nearly eight thousand Chicagoans across all denominations in all of Chicago’s 77 neighborhoods paused for a shared moment of prayer for COVID-safe holidays – in churches, on street corners, at local police stations alongside officers, and more. Chicago Day of Prayer and Thanksgiving events recognized the importance of faith communities getting vaccinated to keep themselves and their communities safe from COVID-19. More than 150 places of worship took part in Day of Prayer activities, praying for healing and comfort for families who have suffered illness, loss, and pain over the past 20 months, and for safety in the City of Chicago.





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8,000 Chicagoans across all denominations
              came together
                  prayed together

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Every day, faith communities across the city provide support and comfort to those who are fearful, anxious, and in need of additional guidance. Building upon this premise, the I’ll Hold Your Hand Vaccine Ambassador Program gives faith communities the opportunity to organize members to provide hands-on support – literally – and hold the hand of a person struggling to get vaccinated because of fear.

Faith Leaders Place of Worship Address Denomination Certificate
Pastor David Ballard Sunrise M.B. Church 6159 S. Aberdeen Baptist Approved
Pastor Ray Berryhill Resurrected Life Church 4538 W. Fullerton Multi Cultural Approved
Phalese Binion Westside Minister's Coalition P.O. Box 51547 Multi Cultural Approved
Pastor Eric Booker Greater Tabernacle Cathedral 11300 S. King Drive  C.O.G.I.C Approved
Pastor Bryson/Mister Robin Anderson First Church of Deliverance 4315 S. Wabash Spiritual Approved
Pastor Marcus T. Clemons Kingdom Baptist Church  301 N. Central Ave Baptist  Approved
Rev. Nicholas Desmond Ourlady of Mercy Church  4432 N Troy Catholic Pending Approval
Pastor Michael Eaddy People's Church of the Harvest 3570 W. 5th Ave C.O.G.I.C Approved
Pastor Epting Hope Community Church 5900 West Iowa Christian Approved
Pastor Reshorma Fitzpatrick Stone Temple Church  3622 W. Douglas Baptist Approved
Doc Fuder (John Fuder) Chicagoland Pray 222 S. Riverside Plaza  Non-denominational Pending Approval
Pastor Hannah/Clark New Life Covenant Church 7621 S. Greenwood Non-denominational Approved
Minister Lynda Gathings Faith UMC 335 W. 75th. St. Methoduist Approved
Elder Leonardo Gilbert / Teresa Gilbert Sheldon Heights Church of God 11325 S. Halsted Christian Approved
Pastor J Rayford Goodwin Mount Olive Baptist 6353 S. Marshfield Baptist  Approved
Reverend Christopher E. Griffin St. Martin's Episcopal Church 5700 W. Midway Park  Episcopal Pending Approval
Rev. Dr Darrell Griffin Oakdale Covenant Church 9440 S. Vincennes Christian Approved
Bishop Dwight Gunn Heritage International Christian 5312 W. North Christian Approved
Bishop Tyrone Harrington Greater Morning View Baptist Church 2335 E. 100th St Baptist Approved
Pastor Chris Harris Bright Star Church of God In Christ 735 E. 44th St. C.O.G.I.C Approved
Pastor Chris Harris St. James Ministries 11750 South Lowe C.O.G.I.C  Approved
Rev. Marshall Hatch New Mt Pilgrim MB Church 4301 W. Washington  Baptist  Approved
Pastor Paul Jakes  New Tabernacle of Faith  531 N. Kedzie Ave Baptist  Approved
Sister Loretta Johnson  Second Mt Vernon Church  7922 S. Hoyne Ave Baptist  Approved
Rev. Watson Jones III Compassion Baptist Church  2650 E. 95th St.  Baptist  Pending 
Father Bob Kelly/ Sister Ladell Our Lady of Africa Parish 615 E Oakwood   Catholic Approved
Betti Lewis with Health Ministries St. Mark UMC 8441 S St. Lawrence Methodist Approved
Carolyn Linder South Revival Missionary Baptist Church 9537 S. Prairie Baptist Approved
Pastor Larue Kidd True Light Baptist 7300 S. Maryland Baptist Approved
Pastor James T. Meeks Salem Baptist Church 752 E. 114th St. Baptist Pending Approval
Pastor Johnny Miller Mt. Vernon Baptiat Church 2622 W. Jackson Baptist Approved
Brother Greg Mitchell Masjid Al Farooq 8950 S. Stony Island Muslim Pending Approval
Sister Cyndy Olivares Iglesia Immaculada Church 2944 E 88th St Catholic Approved
Pator Julio Pena / Sister Sandra Silva Good Sheperd Presbyterian Church 5550 S Merrimac  Presbyterian Approved
Rev. Charles Rogers Greater Mt Vernon Baptist Church 8700 S. Laflin Baptist Approved
Sister Annie Russell West Point Baptist Church 3572 S. Cottage Grove Baptist  Approved
Pastor Sharpe Fellowship M.B. Church 4543 S. Princeton Baptist Approved
Rev. David Simonetti St. Floridin 13145 S Houstoon  Catholic  Pending
Pastor Donald Smith Holy Jerusalem M.B. Church 2335 E. 100th St. Baptist  Approved
Bishop H. Smith Apostolic Faith 3823 S. Indiana PAW Pending Approval
Pastor Kenyatta Smith  Another Chance Church 9550 S. Harvard  Baptist  Approved
Pastor David Sutton Bread Life ofMB Church 1924 W. 63rd St. Christian Approved
Pastor Sean Kelly Tatum Sr. Mason Temple COGIC 6098 N 35th St.  Milwaukee, WI C.O.G.I.C Approved
Apostle Darlyn C. Turner Liberty Temple 2233 W. 79th St. Apostolic Approved
Elder Loretta C. Turner Liberty Temple 2233W. 79th St. Apostolic Approved
Pastor Norman Tyson Westside Minister's Coalition - St. John's Willing Worker's Church 5820 W. Division St. Non-denominational Approved
Apostle Angela Walker God's House of Devine Revelation 6801 S. Bell Non-denominational Approved
Roosevelt Watkins Bethlehem Star Church 9231 S. Cottage Baptist Approved
Bishop David Whittley First Corinthian Temple C.O.G.I.C 4520 W. Washington Blvd C.O.G.I.C Approved
Sister Maria Maple Park United Methodist Church 11705 Elizabeth Methodist Approved

Any faith institution can take part in the I’ll Hold Your Hand initiative. Here’s how:

  • Step 1: Contact Minster Sandra Robinson Cunningham at to get resources and information, and be added to the list of participating places of worship.
  • Step 2: Encourage members of your faith community to compete the City’s online Vaccine Ambassadors Course.
  • Step 3: Connect your ambassadors to people in the community who need additional support, "hold their hands” and help them get vaccinated.

Anyone can become an ambassador, organized and deployed to vaccination events through participating places of worship (list coming soon).

The process is easy, and the benefits are rewarding: 

  • Step 1: Complete the City’s online Vaccine Ambassadors Course.
  • Step 2: Print your certificate and take it to a participating place of worship.
  • Step 3: Join their vaccination team and start providing additional moral support at various vaccination events.

List of participating places of worship is coming soon.


I’ll Hold Your Hand is part of the Protect Chicago 77 initiative to ensure that 77 percent of all Chicago residents ages 12 and up have started their COVID-19 vaccination series by the end of the year.

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