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Rockford Rescue Mission
715 West State St.
Rockford, IL 61102
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Rockford Rescue Mission
P.O. Box 7489
Carol Stream, IL 60197-7489
Phone: 815-965-5332
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Phone: 815-965-5332

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Our Speakers Come to You

Our representatives are always ready to share how Rockford Rescue Mission helps those in need with your employee, church or civic group. In addition to sharing about the programs and services offered by Rockford Rescue Mission, we explore issues related to poverty, addiction, homelessness and more.

This is an excellent way to gain insight into the needs of your community and become equipped to make a difference at the same time.

To schedule a speaker, call 815-965-5332 or email us at

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The Rockford Rivets baseball home opener is next Wednesday, May 31, and the Mission takes center stage. Brent, one of our Life Recovery residents, will throw out the first pitch. Volunteer Supervisor Charmel Jacobs, along with her daughter, Stephanie, will sing the National Anthem. If you buy your $12 tickets online (use code RRM23), $4 of each ticket benefits the Mission! Finally, you can bring a donation of laundry detergent, canned fruit or vegetables for the Mission. We look forward to this community partnership for several games this season at Rivets Stadium in Loves Park.
Augie and Taylen have completed our Life Recovery Program, and both are now in our Transitional Housing Program. Augie is enrolled in and learning our Pastoral Care Advanced Vocational Track, and Taylen is in the Human Services Advanced Vocational Track. It is such a joy to watch the process of life transformation in our residents!
Judy Johnson and her team at Quixotic Bakery, 116 N. Madison St., provided cookies recently for the Mission's meal prepared by her church, Grace Lutheran of Loves Park. Thanks Quixotic and thanks, Grace Lutheran!
A Bigger Boat—and a Step of Faith
“Sometimes I feel like the man who was picking up victims of a sinking ship with his small fishing boat. He cried out in the midst of an already overloaded craft, ‘O Lord, for a bigger boat!’ That’s our constant prayer here, ‘O Lord, for a bigger building, more room, more adequate facilities!’”
 —G.O. Pitney, late 1960s
In 1971, The Mission was outgrowing its original home on Kishwaukee Street. Director G.O. Pitney checked out the Germania Club building for sale not far away, on South Madison Street. The 79-year-old building was twice as big. It had been the site of Rockford’s first automated bowling alley, and now had a ballroom that G.O. thought could be turned into a chapel. The three-lane bowling alley could become a dormitory. A 50-foot bar downstairs could be converted to a sobering-up center. Another bar upstairs could be torn out and converted to office space. The building’s asking price: $30,000.
G.O. raised most of the down-payment money during revival meetings in his native Missouri. But the Mission’s board members weren’t so enthusiastic. The bank had said they would have to personally sign for the loan. None of them wanted to do that.
Mel Schlueter, a Christian lawyer in town, shared G.O.’s vision. He said, “Pitney, if you’ll sign your name for the bank, I’ll cosign.”
Mel’s signature was the only one that meant anything. Outside of the money for the down payment, G.O. didn’t have a dime. But Mel signed for the full responsibility of the loan. And
Rockford Rescue Mission had a new home for the next 28 years.
Mel’s step of faith was one of the most important contributions anyone ever made to the Mission.
Adapted from Rescuing the Raggedy Man, ©2004 by Perry Pitney and Jim Killam
The Mission is hiring! We have a number of positions available, both full-time and part-time, to help bring help and hope to hurting people. If you’re looking for the chance to serve where your faith can be front and center, visit our website and check out the opportunities.
With a new month comes a new list of needs at the Mission, and you can help. Take a look at the list and when you do your shopping, pick up an extra item or two, or three, and be a blessing to our guests and residents. Thank you!
A team from the Ozinga concrete company helped serve a meal last week at the Mission—and they plan to make this a regular occurrence. Team members pictured here all live in the Chicago suburbs, so we especially appreciate their making the trip to Rockford to be a blessing to our residents, guests and staff. Ozinga is sending another group this week!
The Operating Room Staff at Javon Bea Hospital Riverside used our Urgent Needs list to do a donation drive for the Mission. Along with many of the listed items, hospital staffer Alexis Sies raffled a blanket. The staff then used the raffle money to buy even more items for us – including food, personal care items and paper products. One employee even gave a $100 gift card!

We’re so grateful for this team’s creative generosity!
“Do you know what it feels like to wake up every day and wonder how long you can hang on … and yet be scared to death of the options? Do you know what it feels like to watch the person you love become someone you don’t even recognize anymore?”
Sherry Pitney journaled those words at the depths of her despair. Much was expected of her as Rockford Rescue Mission’s leader, but few people knew about the storm she was going through. Sherry’s story is one of ruthless trust and battle-tested hope. It’s part of Rockford Rescue Mission’s powerful book, The Other Side of Hope: From Dark Valleys to Wholeness. To purchase a copy for yourself or a friend, call the Mission at 815-965-5332 or email info (at)
From a student’s volunteer application: “I am a hard worker and I can start a conversation with anyone about anything. I also have a personal relationship with homelessness. My uncle is homeless in California and I know the horrors of mental illness and homelessness. Even though I cannot help him, I am able to help the people of Rockford who are like him.”

God has placed so many precious people within our reach here at Rockford Rescue Mission. Volunteering here not only blesses the recipients, but it is often a life-changing experience for our volunteers. To find out more, visit our website's Volunteer page.
We’re grateful that Saint Anthony College of Nursing students have committed to serving breakfast at the Mission on the first Saturday of each month! Their group leader is Annalisa Foley. Here, the group enjoys a moment with Bobbie Williams (right), our head cook.

The Mission has so many life-changing opportunities to volunteer. To find out more, visit our website's Volunteer page.
Great news: The Mission has received $23,000 from Napelton Subaru to help provide physical assistance, practical guidance and vital resources to the homeless and hurting in Rockford! The donation is part of Subaru’s “Share the Love” event to support local charities close to their hearts.

“Rockford Rescue Mission is much-loved by Napleton Subaru and a vital resource for so many homeless and struggling individuals in the Rock River Valley,” said Todd Tifft, Sales Manager at Napleton Subaru. “We are honored to partner with them to bring essential care and healing to the lives of our neighbors in need.”

The donation was presented to the Mission this afternoon at Napleton Subaru, 505 N. Perryville Road in Rockford.

The “Share the Love” event donated $250 for every new Subaru vehicle sold or leased from Nov.17, 2022 through Jan. 3, 2023, and has raised over $250 million nationwide for charity over the last 15 years. This marks the third year that Rockford Rescue Mission has been chosen by Napleton Subaru for its “Share the Love” event.

“We are grateful Napleton Subaru chose to partner with Rockford Rescue Mission and for their commitment to making a difference in our local community,” said Sherry Pitney, Rockford Rescue Mission CEO. “Their generous donation will have a tremendous impact on those we serve and help further our programs of shelter, recovery, education and job-skills training for hurting men, women and children.”
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