Members of the Chicago West chapter are from a variety of congregations in the western suburbs of Chicago. Men who are employed, seeking employment, and retired come together and find common ground in their faith, or their pursuit of what their faith means in their daily lives. We meet every Friday morning at 6:45 at Glendale Lakes Golf Club. The time is split between enjoying a buffet breakfast, conversations with old and new friends, and a speaker sharing their story with the group. Speakers come from within our group as well as guest speakers – each giving his personal story of Jesus in his life.Great challenges and blessings have come through hearing how other men are walking with their Savior.
Beginning in January 2017 our chapter will have a new leader – Chad Smith. He has been a member of the group for about 5 years. He has been married 20 years and is the father of four girls. (Please don’t ask him if he knows how much weddings cost.) They have lived in Wheaton since 2008. Chad expresses that he has been deeply impacted by his involvement with NCS and particularly our local chapter. Something really special about Chad – He frequently accepts terms and conditions without reading any of the terms or conditions. He is a Sasquatch skeptic.
What has being part of the Chicago-West NCS Chapter meant to some of the men?
“Because of NCS, I have become a better husband, father and follower of Jesus. The guys I meet with are so open and transparent about their own struggles and successes with their families, faith and work that they challenge, encourage and inspire me to be the man that God has called me to be. I am grateful for the friendships I have formed through NCS and the transformative power of those connections.”
“When I first started going to NCS I would ask myself if I learned something after the presentation. I can honestly say on every occasion I learned some idea that challenged my thinking or encouraged my walk. That along with a warm breakfast and a great company of men from varied work experiences, the decision to commit to NCS was a no-brainer. There is no doubt that being a part of these Friday gatherings has made me a better man.”
“What has NCS Chicago-West meant to me?
- I’ve gained more knowledge that I could deepen my relationship with Christ than ever before.
- I’ve heard more world class Christian speakers than ever before (like Eric Metaxas, Louis Palau, Josh McDowell, President Wheaton College, Jack Deere, Tom Lane, Jerry Root, Gene Frost, Timothy Botts).
- I’ve heard more meaningful testimonies, many our own NCS brothers, than ever before.
- I’ve made more Christian friendships than ever before.”
Our chapter began meeting in May 2010. A visit by Bern Bertsche to the Winston-Salem chapter encouraged by Larry Menconi, a former Chicagoan, was the initiation into NCS. The Winston-Salem chapter had begun about 5 years prior and had grown to weekly a gathering of a significant number of men. Following the Winston-Salem visit, Bern and four friends attended the NCS Annual Retreat at The Homestead in Virginia. Joining with 600 like-minded men, all seeking a closer walk with Jesus was awesome! These were the catalysts God used to begin meeting in the western suburbs of Chicago.
About the New Canaan Society
Nationally over 10,000 men meet weekly across 52 chapters nationwide. Each chapter has its own flavor and is directed locally.
Built around a group of 4-8 guys a chapter will eventually produce small G.A.S groups where deeper friendships are born and built. G.A.S. groups typically meet on the off weeks of the chapter meetings. Many chapters will do a dinner once a quarter or something else social.
Once a year the movement has an opportunity to be together at the National Retreat Weekend in March.