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Bolingbrook Church Pastor: 'We're Not a Threat to Anyone'

The pastor and founder of Ultimate Faith Christian Center in Bolingbrook addresses concerns his church would invite "drug addicts, ex-cons and the homeless" to the community.

Ultimate Faith Christian Center in Bolingbrook hopes to move to a larger space to better suit its growing congregation. 

The center, which currently operates out of a storefront along W. Boughton Rd. near Tailgater's, looks to move to a vacated Walgreens property at the corner of Janes Avenue and 83rd Street. The Bolingbrook plan commission will vote to approve or reject the move at a meeting Wednesday. 

The move has raised the ire of some Woodridge Patch readers, who fear the church's move will bring "drug addicts, ex-cons and the homeless" to their neighborhood. In specific, readers raised concern about community safety and the proximity of "drug addicts and ex-cons" to Woodridge's Cypress Cove Family Aquatic Park.

Readers point to perceived threat to their safety based on a mission statement on Ultimate Faith's website that the church's "mission is to minister to those that have been given up on, the homeless, ex-offenders and those with addictions to teach them the word of God."

Ultimate Faith is "not a threat to anyone," said George Guilford, pastor and founder of Ultimate Faith. "We are upstanding Christian citizens." 

George Guilford, pastor and founder of Ultimate Faith, said that mission statement was crafted 10 years ago. While his church will serve any person who enters the church who has struggled with these issues and minister to him or her, the church does not "load up a bus-load of criminals."

Most of his 70-person congregation have children. They're business owners or white-collar workers, he said. They travel from Naperville, Joliet, Woodridge and Aurora. 

Guilford said his ministry has changed hundreds of lives. Ultimate Faith has traveled to homeless shelters and the south and west sides of Chicago to distribute Bibles and minister to people. Just one success story: a woman in the congregation who was previously homeless is now buying a home.

Ultimate Faith has operated previously out of a beauty shop on Frontage Road in Bolingbrook and out of the Bolingbrook Park District. 

"We've never had any complaints, and we've never had any disturbances," Guilford said. "There are houses right behind (our current location), and some of the people who live in the houses behind us come to the church." 

Guilford said he has been homeless and was in prison. "But that's the old me," Guilford said. After he became a Christian, "the weight of the world was lifted off my shoulders. I felt that God had saved me and delivered me from all my demons, and my misery had become my mission." 

Now he has founded a church, become a minister and his children (Bolingbrook High School grads) are attending college on full-ride scholarships or performing academically at the top of their class, he said. 

Ultimate Faith hopes to move to the former Walgreens location as soon as possible, Guilford said, and install carpeting, a sound system and a stage. 

"It's a church," Guilford said. "It's not going to have a strip club." 

Michael Clatworthy February 17, 2013 at 05:52 AM
Praise is what I do...doesn't sound like it would need to be anonymous. As a fraud investigator I have to admit it really isn't anyhow.
Michael Clatworthy February 17, 2013 at 06:18 AM
The single family home areas nearest the location stand to lose the most. They are very diverse, safe and content. All posts for this church are ignoring that the church's mission will undoubtedly attract those mentioned in it. They are blinded by what the potential ends could mean- a more religious and cleaner community but it is not this community that requires. I hate beating dead horses but...this church's focus is no doubt noble but will have its bumps in the road like any organizatiion. Unfortunatly those bumps will be occuring in our backyard and include drug addicts and excons. I fear what those bumps will actually be.
jake February 17, 2013 at 08:46 AM
hey mike if there any way i can email you that will be great i so i can talk to you and tell you stuff on there so the ppl that are watching dont change anything what so ever and im sure woodridge will help pay for a lawyer and so on woodridge and bolingbrook area around there dont want it and i know a few stores that dont want it either im sure they will donate some money
jake February 17, 2013 at 11:04 AM
and mike im sure that sex offenders that might be going to the church iwll be to close to little kids and im sure there are laws that excons cant be that close to kids bc of the pool
jake February 20, 2013 at 12:06 AM
yes we did come in and why if everyone doesnt want you in the area why would u move in jw

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