ZION Outreach is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization!

Zion Outreach Mission: “Through church and community effort… this corporation will provide uplifting programs supporting education, economic development, nutrition, recreation, social development, health, safety and spiritual development for residents served by Zion Lutheran Church, Rockford, IL.”

Zion Outreach neighborhood community development programs:

  • Buddy House Ministry: We serve through a partnership with Rockford Housing Authority and Angelic Organic Learning Center. The Buddy House is an apartment in Blackhawk Courts where we offer programs for residents and support the AOLC garden program. Contact Janice Forrest at juju051959@gmail.com or call Zion Church at 815-964-4609
  • Zion’s Literacy Program: “Choosing to Read” is for kids who can choose an age appropriate book from our over 8,000 volume children’s library. We have a digital card catalog based on the Lexile level of each book (Lexile level is a measure of its readability).  “Adults Learning English” is an opportunity for literacy, so people would learn to read. We offer this program every Saturday and Sunday from 3-5pm with a computer lab with Rosetta Stone software.  Contact the church office for more information.
  • Cornucopia Food Pantry (Tuesday, Thursday and third Saturday, 9:00 AM to 11:00 AM at Cornucopia Food Pantry, 402 Market Street, Rockford), Contact Peggy King at peggyking91@yahoo.com or 815-962-1380.
  • Ruthie's Kitchen: Since 2018, we have hosted a soup kitchen on Saturday. In 2022, we began to offer a free meal at 1pm in partnership with various groups and churches in the community. Contact Janice Forrest, 815-964-4609 to help provide food or serve.


To better understand our program, we have posted two videos on YouTube.  The links are:

Zion's Literacy Program "Choosing to Read" or 

Digital Card Catalog of After School Tutoring at Zion


For more information, contact Rev. Dr. Michael E. Thomas, Executive Director of Zion Outreach at zionrockfordpastor@gmail.com or at 925 Fifth Avenue - Rockford, IL 61104

To donate, send check made out to Zion Outreach to 925 Fifth Avenue, Rockford, IL 61104. Please mark on the memo line of the check which program you would like it go toward. Any donations received unmarked will be distributed by the Zion Outreach Board of Directors where appropriate.

© 2022 Zion Lutheran Church Rockford
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