Jesus is the man!

I did a little walking in the freezing temperatures Sunday and randomly found myself at a unique little church in the western Chicago neighborhood of Austin. The church itself is a converted convenient store and when I randomly came to the door, just about every person in the congregation turned and stared. They were so welcoming, though, so I sat down and listened to the sermon.

The passion in this room absolutely blew me away. For a solid 45 minutes, the preacher and the parishioners pretty much screamed. Some screamed and wept. I didn’t scream or weep, but eventually I felt comfortable enough to photograph. I’ve included a few shots of what I think could develop into an extended project for me. The church sits in a crime-ridden, impoverished area where murder and drugs are not all that rare. Crime statistics show Austin is one of the most dangerous neighborhoods in all of Chicago. Still the church continues on there and the pastor spoke of hope and change for 2010 after a very difficult and challenging 2009.

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