You’re Invited!

Tomorrow Night’s GLS Celebration

“Everyone wins when a leader gets better,” says Senior Pastor Bill Hybels. “No matter where you lead, The Global Leadership Summit can help you get better as a leader and clarify your grander vision—the reason God called you to lead.”

This week, thousands of leaders at more than 300 premier host sites in the U.S. take a leap toward bettering the way they lead for the rest of their lives through the world-class teaching of The Global Leadership Summit 2015. And in the months following, a total of 260,000 leaders and pastors in 875 cities and 120 countries will be impacted, as the GLS goes global.

But whether or not you plan to attend this year’s Summit, you’re invited to experience the high impact of the GLS through the 2015 Summit Celebration tomorrow night at 7 p.m. in the Main Auditorium at South Barrington. Extend Willow’s hospitality as you welcome more than 1,600 international leaders for a time of worship with the Summit band, laughter with comedian Michael Jr., stories of impact from leaders and pastors around the world—and words of vision from Gary Schwammlein, president and CEO of Willow Creek Association.

“This week is the highest-impact week of our church’s year,” Bill says. “Join me in kicking off this year’s Summit—and I guarantee your world will be rocked by what you see and hear.”

Sandblast Makes Impact

Last night almost 2,000 high school students and their small-group leaders returned to Willow Creek on 37 charter buses after spending a full four days connecting with God and one another at Student Impact’s summer retreat, Sandblast. Over the course of the weekend, former Willow pastor Darren Whitehead and Director of Student Impact Bryan Jones centered their messages on the theme, “I Surrender All.” Click here to get a glimpse into this year’s camp experience.

The Student Impact staff and team of small-group leaders will spend this week praising God for a powerful weekend. “Sandblast 2015 is one camp I will remember for years to come,” Bryan says. “The Holy Spirit was tangibly present in each session as students surrendered their lives fully to Christ—dozens of them for the first time. I am truly humbled by the authenticity with which students worship, and I have never been more convinced that God wants to use the surrendered lives of teenagers to bring His kingdom to earth!”

This year’s Sandblast was a record-breaker—not only in total attendance, but in attendance across Willow’s regional campuses as well: 1,457 students from South Barrington, 123 from Crystal Lake, 103 from DuPage, 108 from Huntley, and 156 from North Shore. “The highlight of camp,” says Bryan, “was that 130 students who had never been to church before attended Sandblast—and many of them accepted Christ for the first time. In addition, 62 students made first-time decisions to follow Christ and 77 students recommitted their lives to Him.”

Student Impact South Barrington resumes its regular schedule this Sunday, August 2 with 11:15 a.m. worship and teaching in Lakeside Auditorium. To learn more about Student Impact at South Barrington, click hereFor information about student ministries at one of Willow’s regional congregations, click its link below:

Casa de Luz   •   Chicago   •   Crystal Lake   •   DuPage  •   Huntley  •   North Shore •   South Lake

Quick—Get Your Tickets!

Tickets for Willow Creek’s 40th Anniversary Celebration went on sale yesterday at 10 a.m.—and they are going fast. “Peoples’ enthusiasm for coming together at this ‘Only God’ event brings me great joy,” says Senior Pastor Bill Hybels. “It matches what I know to be true of our church: We love to be together and we love to worship God and give Him credit for all He has done in our lives. I can’t wait to have everyone together—all services, all Willow congregations, all under one roof!”

If you haven’t purchased your ticket yet, do so today! Plenty of seats are still available, but they’re filling fast. If seats in your preferred level or location are already taken, don’t worry—the United Center stage is in the round, so everything happening on stage can be seen from every angle in the venue. “There’s not a bad seat in the house!” Bill says. “And invite a friend. What better way to introduce them to our church than to include them in this family celebration!”


Already purchased tickets? Remember to purchase parking as well. Pre-paid parking at the United Center is just $6 per space, and is also filling fast.


For updates on the 40th Anniversary Celebration and ticket sales, follow Willow on Facebook and Twitter.

Claim Your Spot at Willow’s 40th Anniversary

Willow Creek celebrates its 40th anniversary at 5 p.m., Sunday, October 18 at the United Center. “This event will be an all-Willow, all-out worship service and celebration,” says Heather Larson, Willow’s executive pastor. “Similar to our church’s 20th anniversary celebration in 1995, we are again returning to the United Center to celebrate all God has done for us. We’re hoping every Willow attender from every campus will mark this date on their calendars in ink—and get their tickets to this incredible celebration.”
Beginning Monday, July 20, you can claim your spot at this momentous event in the history of Willow by purchasing your tickets here.

What is the price range of tickets?

There are three prices for ticketed seats: $5, $10, and $20. Standing-room-only tickets are also available for $2. Tickets may only be purchased through the 40th anniversary site (no box office, email, or in-person ticket sales will be available). All tickets are available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Why is Willow charging for this event?

Because the 40th anniversary is a significant milestone in our church’s history, Willow’s Executive Team and Elders felt it was important for everyone to gather together under one roof—and celebrate all that God has done for us over these past four decades. It takes a venue the size of United Center to make room for everyone! Rather than taking funds for the venue rental from our church’s ministry budget, our leaders are asking each of us to contribute a small amount for our tickets to help cover the expense of renting the United Center.

What about service details, directions, food, and parking?

Find answers for your questions about this landmark service at Willow’s 40th anniversary website.

Regional Congregations on a Roll!

Willow South Lake has a new home
“For the last 18 months, we’ve been on a journey to find a long-term home for our church,” says Matt Wright, lead pastor of Willow South Lake. “We’ve been praying for a place where we can fully live out the vision God has given us—to help people grow closer to Him and to one another.”God has answered the prayers of Matt and the Willow South Lake congregation. “He’s provided exceedingly and abundantly more than we could’ve ever imagined!” Matt says. “He has moved mountains to provide us with a facility that will take our church into the future, in a village that is welcoming us with open arms.”Last month, Willow South Lake held multiple tours of their church’s new home—625 Barclay Boulevard, Lincolnshire (see photo above). The new location is just a few minutes from Regal Cinemas, where they have been meeting since the church launched in April.For more news about Willow’s newest regional congregation, follow Willow South Lake on Facebook.


Willow North Shore is building its future home
Since it opened its doors in a Waukegan school 12 years ago, Willow North Shore has been gathering in a rented space with dreams of someday owning its own property and building a permanent home. Those dreams will become a reality in the fall of 2016.

“It’s hard to encapsulate all God has done through the process of building what will be our permanent home,” says Steve Gillen, lead pastor of Willow North Shore. “He led us so tangibly to this piece of land in the heart of Glenview—a short drive from our current location. He guided us through a time of opposition, prompted a world-class architect who attends Willow to design this beautiful church home, and encouraged our congregation to give generously. From the beginning of this search, we knew that if we ever would have a permanent home, it would clearly be a provision from God. We give Him all the credit.”

Click here to read more about the next chapter of Willow North Shore—and view photos and maps of their future home.

For more news, follow Willow North Shore on Facebook.

Casa de Luz makes pilot 9 a.m. service permanent
Casa de Luz, Willow’s Spanish-speaking congregation, launched a second Sunday service this past March as a pilot experiment. “We were unsure if growing attendance would sustain a second service for the long haul,” says Juan Guillén, lead pastor of Casa. Today—just three months later—Juan is excited to say, “Thanks to God, the second service is now permanent! At the rate God is growing our Casa family, we simply cannot go back to a single service.” The new service gathers at 9 a.m. on Sundays in the Chapel, with the original service following at 11:15 a.m.

The Casa de Luz congregation has grown significantly in recent months. “Casa has shown an average increase of 111 people every week as compared to last year,” says Juan. “That’s a 22% increase in attendance! And 16 different Hispanic countries are represented at Casa every Sunday.”

For more news about Casa de Luz, follow them on Facebook and Twitter.

For more news on Willow Creek’s other regional congregations, click their links below.