the gospel

The Gospel is the only hope for humankind. Only by the grace of the Gospel are people transformed. The message of the Gospel is that Christ has done what is necessary to bring us into a relationship with God. We believe that the gospel speaks to the whole person, whether religious or irreligious, and that it can transform any place, bringing the healing and restoration of Christ’s Kingdom. Therefore, we keep it at the center of everything.

the city

Christianity has always thrived in an urban context. The diversity, need, and creation of culture have always been at the heart of the gospel movement. We love Chicago, and want to live, work, celebrate, raise our families, enjoy, and serve this great city. We need the city, and the city needs us, and we are continually exploring the relationship between the two.

social justice

Because the gospel is the good news of Christ’s coming kingdom, we will bring kingdom ethics to bear in our relationship to the community at large. Ethos seeks to partner with local social service agencies that assist the suffering in our own local communities. Furthermore, we will pray for sensitivity to the mercy needs of our community and will seek to serve our neighbors out of Christ’s love.


Because God is the one who initiates relationships, and sent his Son to seek and save people, we will seek the lost in the hope that they will be restored to their Father. We believe that mission is something we do both corporately and personally. Rather than developing evangelistic programs, we seek to create an atmosphere in everything we do that allows people to process the Gospel. We expect that people will want and require multiple exposures to the Gospel and to our church before they are ready to come to a conclusion about the faith.

cultural engage-ment

We believe that the good news of the gospel is part and parcel of God’s redemption of this fallen world and its cultural expressions. Beautiful art causes us to deal with the broken human condition, and then points us to seek the source and solution to such pain. We are a church that welcomes, encourages, and equips artists of every medium. We, therefore, will seek to offer artists opportunities to show or perform their work, providing encouragement for them to grow and develop as artists.

Counter-cultural community

The trinity is at the core of Christian truth; namely that God Himself has always been in community—the Father and Son and Spirit all loving, giving, and sharing with one another. Community is an invitation to participate in this relationship, and to continually invite others into it. We realize that the first thing damaged by the fall was relationships, and the first thing that should be repaired by the resurrection is the way we relate to God and others. We acknowledge that we need each other, and that the life Jesus offers works only in connection with others.


Ethos does not exist as an end in itself – we desire to be an incubator for church planting throughout Chicago, in that when we grow, we will be very intentional about spinning off and beginning new congregations in and around Chicago. We will do this by keeping our congregations small, but centrally administrated (one church with many congregations). Each of these churches will partner with us in pursuing the goal of spiritual, social, and cultural renewal.