An historic peace church in the heart of Elgin

All Things New…

This Sunday, August 20

“Blessing of the Backpacks”

Blessing of the Backpacks will take place during our worship service this Sunday. All students, teachers, and school staff are invited to bring their bags, backpacks, or other school gear for a special back-to-school blessing! Service begins at 9:30 a.m.

A joint service with First Presbyterian Church of Elgin

Worship service in the Park Sunday, Sept. 10

Please join us


On Sunday, September 10, Highland Avenue will join First Presbyterian Church for a joint outdoor worship service at Wing Park, with a potluck lunch to follow.

Pastor Katie and Pastor Karen Schlack will bring a joint message. Nancy Miner is preparing the children's story, and musicians from both churches will collaborate on worship music.

Our two congregations have shared a history of working together on local peace and justice issues, and we look forward to this opportunity to grow closer in our relationship with this sister congregation.

Please join us in presence or in prayer!

Just remember to bring your lawn chairs, picnic blankets, table service, and a dish or two to share.

Please note: Due to the outdoor service, no worship service will be held at the church on September 10.

Highland Avenue members honored at Judson Prayer Breakfast

Congratulations to Highland Avenue members Carol and Leon Miller who were honored at the May10th Judson University Prayer Breakfast as nominees for the D. Ray Wilson Volunteer Service Award.

Carol and Leon managed the weekly Saturday night Soup Kettle meal at our church for more than 30 years and have provided mentorship and support for the city's overall Soup Kettle ministry as part of Elgin Cooperative Ministry, which makes it possible for any hungry person to receive a meal every day of the week, every week of the year in Elgin, IL.

Thank you, Leon and Carol for your tireless service for your neighbors' good and the glory of God.  

Greetings received from our Muslim neighbors

Honoring God through Community

The Highland Avenue Church was honored to receive four thank-you notes from local Muslim neighbors last December in response to the banner outside our building that reads: "Honor God - say no to anti-Muslim bigotry."

When the cards arrived, Pastor Katie and Administrative Assistant Barb mistook them from the envelopes to be Christmas cards. Thinking it odd that the church would receive cards, they were all the more moved as they opened them and realized what they were.

"Dear Pastors and Parishioners, Thank you so very much for your banner," reads one card. "It means a lot to us and more so to our children who were born in this country and know only one home. It is so heartening to see a church in our hometown of Elgin to be so tolerant, loving, and inclusive. This is exactly what we need today. After all, we really are one big family."

Church Board Chair Anna Speicher rose during the sharing of Joys and Concerns in Sunday worship to say how touched she was by these expressions of gratitude. "I want to say how amazing it is when you do a small thing," she shared. "I'm really so grateful for these people who took the time to tell us that it mattered. It's a reminder to me that these small opportunities that we have to say something, anything--to witness--don't go unnoticed. They're important. So, I want to try to do that more. I think we're all called to do that. Our banner is just a sign. It's not enough. We need to do more. But it's still important."  

Our views on the current political climate in the wake of the presidential election

Highland Avenue Church letter of response

In November a letter was approved by the church board and submitted to the editors of Elgin Courier News and the Daily Herald, expressing our response to the challenges and opportunities created by the presidential campaign and election. We invite members of the community to read the letter (click here) and to consider or share their own responses, especially regarding some of the ways that we can move forward constructively, together. 


Sunday worship service at 9:30 a.m.

Fellowship time at 10:30 a.m.

Sunday School is not held during the summer months but will resume on September 17. Classes meet after church for children, youth, and adults. Click here for more info.

Wednesday Morning Bible Study meets at 10 a.m. each week. We will study the scripture text that will be used for our worship service the following Sunday. Join us for a spirited, open discussion.