Josie Guth Explains Changes Coming to the Care Center


Dear Compassion and Justice Core,

Since our move to campus, we have had an amazing run, experiencing great joys and challenges. Our greatest challenge has been that the demand for the Care Center’s services is greater than our ability to meet them within our current hours of operation. For the last couple of months, as a staff team, we have been thinking through how we might focus our services to better serve and develop relationships with our guests, honor our volunteers, and fulfill the second part of our mission statement “so that lives are transformed and Jesus is known.” In order to accomplish all of this, our first step was to implement a cut-off when we reached our capacity. While this has worked very well in terms of honoring our volunteers and having the ability to go deeper with guests, it has been very difficult to turn people away when we need to close our doors.

With that in mind, we have been continuing to work toward a better solution. Before you continue reading, I want you to know we have felt God’s presence guiding and instructing us in this decision. We have full support from the Executive Team and Elders. We move forward prayerfully as we desire to implement this plan in a manner consistent with His will.

Taking into account our mission statement and the compelling data we have about where the highest percentage of our guests live, we have arrived at an overall strategy that allows us to serve guests who are most likely to engage in our church, which allows us to serve them in a holistic and empowering way. We believe this approach will help prevent us from needing to turn people away from the Care Center, particularly our members and those in the church’s footprint. This focus will allow us to spend our energy on those in our footprint and at the same time honor our strategy to partner with our regional churches.

Whom will we serve?

  • Members and involved Willow attenders, regardless of where they live and which regional location they attend
  • Individuals who live in the footprint of our South Barrington campus, which includes the communities identified on the map below
  • Vulnerable people (for example, orphans, widows, elderly disabled, veterans, Safe Family parents, homeless) who are referred from our current or future local community partnerships

How will we serve them?

  • All guests may make 3 visits for food (no questions asked); however, upon their fourth visit, guests will be required to meet with a Care Team member to share their personal situation
  • Members will be served on an appointment-only basis for all services, including food, so we are sure not turn any of them away.
  • We are in the process of determining how we define what it means to be an “involved attender.”

On November 1, we intend to begin a comprehensive communication strategy about these changes in the way we will serve guests, and intend to have the changes fully implemented by January 1. During the transition, guests who visit us but live outside the geographical radius will be given a one-time “grace” visit. Additionally, we will begin providing emergency bags of groceries to those who arrive after we have reached capacity. Please pray that the transition will be smooth, that God gives us wisdom and instruction, and that we are able to serve our guests with the highest level of dignity and the love of Christ.

Peace and Blessings,

smaller josie
Josie Guth
Care Center Directorgeographical-area-we-serve

We will serve households living in the following communities:

Arlington Heights
Barrington Heights
Barrington Hills
Buffalo Grove
Carol Stream
Crystal Lake
Deer Park
Des Plaines
East Dundee
Elk Grove Village
Fox River Grove
Glendale Heights
Hanover Park
Hawthorn Woods
Hoffman Estates
Indian Creek
Island Lake
Lake Barrington
Lake in the Hills
Lake Zurich
Long Grove
Mount Prospect
North Barrington
Oakwood Hills
Port Barrington
Prairie View
Rolling Meadows
Sleepy Hollow
South Barrington
South Elgin
St. Charles
Tower Lake
Vernon Hills
West Chicago
West Dundee
Wood Dale

Category : Local Outreach


When it was mentioned Wednesday 11-20-13 That the Care Center was going to only serve the members of WCCC. I thought that is too bad I also use the service’s that the Care Center offers and I often ask people who I meet if they attend Willow Creek Church services and 90% of the time they don’t and this is a great time to introduce them to the aboundance that God has for them. I do realize that the amount of people that do need help is overwhelming Another thing that I love about Willow is that every deceison is bathed in prayer,so as a wise,Spirit filled deceision is made.

I want to personally apologize for my willingness to allow being tired to keep me at home on my days off. I am a RN and work 9p-7a; and the days that I have off during the week (because I work weekends) are precious to me and my wife.

How easy it is to justify doing nothing when your busy doing nothing. I am one of the members that you are reaching out to and I am hearing the gentle, consistent, moving of the Spirit as sure as I would feel a kick to the abdomen. I am sorry. I have been lazy. I am not going to be lazy anymore.

Tell me what I need to do and where you need me to go. Give me the job no one else wants to do and I will allow God to do the teaching I need that reminds me of how gracious and good He is to me. I would rather sleep in a warm bed in Barrington than feed those who sleep in the cold streets of Barrington.

Forgive me.

Joe, It’s exciting to see how God has been moving and we would love to have you serve on one of our teams. If you visit our volunteer page you’ll see a list of serving opportunities. We do have a need for nurses to help with our Health Services. Our greatest needs right now are probably on our Financial Services team and our Guest Host team. But take a look, and sign up for whatever area seems to be the best fit for you. From there you’ll get an email regarding volunteer orientation. At the orientation you’ll get connected to a team and learn more about the mission, vision, and values of the Care Center. Looking forward to having you!

Here is a link to our volunteer page.

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