Riverside Birdseye ViewThis congregation is deeply connected to the life of the broader Riverside community – through relationships with both religious and secular groups. A sample of related groups follows.

Riverside/North Riverside Covenant of Churches

The Riverside/North Riverside Covenant of Churches was established over 25 years ago to foster dialogue and cooperation between the various churches in our neighboring communities. Currently the group is very active, coordinating a number of wonderful ministries, including:

  • Ecumenical Worship on special days, including an annual Good Friday noontime worship service, the location of which rotates among the churches from year to year, and a Memorial Day observance in Riverside’s Guthrie Park, across from the METRA station.
  • Coordination of service events such as support for the Riverside Township Food Pantry (yes, there’s hunger in Riverside, too!) and an annual Blood Drive.
  • Cooperation in ministry in the area with other United Methodist Churches in Cicero, Brookfield, La Grange, and Western Springs.

Tallgrass Sudbury School

The Riverside United Methodist Church is proud to welcome the Tallgrass Sudbury School to our building. John Wesley believed in the critical importance of education in raising children and founded many schools during the course of his ministry. Sharing our space with Tallgrass Sudbury enables us to participate in this wonderful legacy of the Methodist tradition.  (Check out their site here:

Theological beliefs and principles of the United Methodist Church

Wesleyan Theology: Foundations of United Methodist Beliefs

Wesleyan theology serves as the cornerstone of the United Methodist Church's beliefs and principles. It draws heavily from the teachings of John Wesley, the founder of Methodism, and his understanding of Christian doctrine. Central to Wesleyan theology is the concept of prevenient, justifying, and sanctifying grace, which emphasizes God's active presence and transformative power in the lives of believers. Wesleyan theology also emphasizes the importance of personal faith, social holiness, and the pursuit of perfection, as individuals strive to grow in love of God and neighbor.

The Quadrilateral: Understanding the Method behind Methodist Theology

The Quadrilateral is a distinctive feature of United Methodist theology, representing the four sources through which theological understanding is derived: Scripture, tradition, reason, and experience. These four elements work together in a dynamic interplay, informing and enriching one another as individuals seek to discern God's will and understand the teachings of the Christian faith. By balancing scriptural authority with reason, tradition, and personal experience, the Quadrilateral provides a flexible and comprehensive framework for theological reflection within the United Methodist Church.

Sacramental Theology: Exploring the Role of Ritual and Grace

Sacramental theology occupies a central place in United Methodist beliefs, emphasizing the significance of sacraments as means of grace. Baptism and Holy Communion are regarded as outward signs of God's inward and spiritual grace, conveying God's love, forgiveness, and presence to believers. Through these sacraments, individuals are initiated into the Christian community, nourished spiritually, and strengthened in their faith journey. Sacramental theology underscores the belief that God's grace is available to all people, regardless of age, gender, or social status, inviting individuals into a deeper relationship with God and one another.

Social Justice and Holiness: Integrating Faith with Action in Methodist Principles

The United Methodist Church places a strong emphasis on social justice and holiness, seeing them as integral aspects of Christian discipleship. Rooted in Wesleyan theology, this commitment to social holiness calls believers to actively engage in acts of mercy, compassion, and justice, both individually and collectively. United Methodists are encouraged to advocate for the marginalized, work for systemic change, and address issues of poverty, inequality, and oppression. By integrating faith with action, the United Methodist Church seeks to embody the love and justice of God in the world, striving to create a more just and compassionate society for all.

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