• Hesed house


    659 S. River St. Aurora, IL 60506


    On the second Saturday of alternate months, a team from St. Mark’s provides, prepares, and serves a community meal for about 200 men, women, and children at PADS (Public Action to Deliver Shelter), which is part of Hesed House in Aurora.

    Most people, especially families, at Hesed House have lost a job or lost their home; they have no family or anyone to help support them. Hesed House is there to be that support and to help them through this difficult time. Hesed House provides hope and stability to help people get back on their feet.

    St. Mark’s volunteers are part of over 4,000 volunteers from over 70 faith-based communities who support PADS® Overnight Emergency Shelter, which is the second largest shelter in the State of Illinois.

    In addition to the bi-monthly meal, we also donate non-perishable food and other items to Hesed House. A PADS bin is always located in the front entry of St. Mark’s for donations at any time. Twice a year, we sponsor a Food Drive to collect nonperishable food items, toiletries, towels, and linens.

    We also support PADS and our ministry at Hesed House financially through a special offering called “Souper Bowl.” During the weekend of the Super Bowl, we put out two kettles representing the two NFL playing in the Super Bowl. People donate into the team’s kettle that they want to see win, and all “Souper Bowl” donations go to PADS and Hesed House.

  • Feed my starving children


    555 Exchange Ct., Aurora, IL 60504


    Every February, St. Mark’s participates in a Feed My Starving Children: “Feed the Need MobilePack” event. Volunteers come from all over the Chicago suburbs to package meals. Last year, volunteers at the MobilePack event packaged over one million meals, which is enough food to feed 2,748 children a healthy meal each day for an entire year. 

    Additionally, throughout the year, we have different service opportunities where adults and youth participate in packaging food at the FMSC Aurora location.

  • aurora interfaith food pantry


    1110 Jericho Rd., Aurora, IL 60506


    Aurora Area Interfaith Food Pantry is one of the largest food pantries in Northern Illinois. They distribute over three million meals each year to local residents. Throughout the year, members of our congregation support and donate food in an effort to end local hunger. We join with the Food Pantry’s purpose to provide all our neighbors access to nourishing food.

    Once a year we also hold a “Cereal Bowl Challenge.” On the Challenge weekend, people put their donations into the box of their favorite cereal. (Cheerios is usually the winner!) By raising funds and donating them directly to the Food Pantry, we capitalize on their purchase power. The Pantry can purchase $7 worth of food with each $1 donated.

  • the neighbor project


    73 S. Lasalle St., Aurora, IL 60506


    In 2017, St. Mark’s entered into a partnership with The Neighbor Project (formerly known as Emmanuel House). The mission of The Neighbor Project is to “Break the Cycle—One Life at a Time.” They put their mission into action by providing a path for families to gain home ownership.

    As a church partner, we provide monthly financial sponsorship and also serve as the volunteers to help with property upkeep, mentorship, and ongoing spiritual support for our partner family.

    The Neighbor Project allows our partner family to become educated in how to be successful neighbors and citizens, and puts them on the road to becoming stable home owners. The long-term hope is to break the cycle of poverty for their children and future grandchildren.


  • Mccleery elementary school


    1002 Illinois Avenue, Aurora, IL.60506

    In 2017, St. Mark’s entered into partnership with McCleery Elementary School in Aurora. Our goal is to support and supplement the important work teachers and staff are doing to ensure every child at McCleery is reading at to his/her grade level.

    Currently, 13 members of St. Mark’s volunteer a collective 17 hours a week to help McCleery children develop their reading skills. The students are eager and the teachers are grateful—especially for the one-on-one time. St. Mark’s volunteers are making an impact, and our vision is that this ministry will continue to grow, with additional volunteers and more collaboration with teachers and parents.

  • New Hope lutheran church

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