The CTA Circuit Riders Series

April 8 – May 13, 2018

In early North American Methodism, John Wesley—the founder of what has become the United Methodist Church—created a plan of multiple meeting places, called circuits. A circuit was made up of two or more local churches and a bishop would appoint a clergyperson for each circuit. Every Sunday morning, these pastors would travel for miles to visit each church, often by horseback. Eventually, these traveling preachers became known as Circuit Riders.

Today, we are inspired by those Circuit Riders who went outside the church, traveling across their appointed areas to share the Gospel message.  Motivated by our Methodist heritage, this local group of clergy are traveling around the city (often by CTA!) and rotating through each of our pulpits to preach on a different topic of United Methodism.

Apportionments: Rev. Kelli Beard, Holy Covenant UMC

Evangelism: Sabrina Bermingham, United Church of Rogers Park

The Global Church: Rev. Juyeon Jeon, Epworth UMC

Methodist Mysticism: Rev. April Gutierrez, Berry UMC

Grace: Rev. Hope Chernich, Irving Park UMC

Social Holiness: Rev. Mark Schol, Grace UMC Logan Square

The Sacraments: Rev. Krista Paradiso, Elston Ave UMC

Each Sunday, come to hear a different preacher and be part of an experience of what it means to be United Methodist—what we believe, what makes us unique, and how we seek to live out our faith.

I look upon all the world as my parish.” –John Wesley


Our Guest Preachers

April 8th
Rev. Kelli Beard has been in full-time ministry for 10 years. Prior to ministry, she worked in financial services and then moved on to faith-based community/union organizing. She was raised Roman Catholic and after recognizing a call to ordained leadership in the Church, she became a United Methodist in 2006. Since 2015, Kelli has served as the pastor at Holy Covenant UMC, located Lincoln Park/Lakeview. Kelli loves to bake, workout, the Blues, and drag queens. She also loves her partner, their dog Scooter, and all things summer related in this amazing city of Chicago.
April 15th
Pastor Sabrina Bermingham is a student at Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary working on a Master of Arts in Spiritual Formation and Evangelism and is in the process of becoming an Ordained Deacon in the UMC. She has worked for United Church of Rogers Park for several years in many capacities. She is married to her partner Nikki, has three dogs, three cats and two fish tanks. Sabrina is an avid White Sox fan and loves baseball season. A native of New Orleans she loves jazz and misses the food but not the heat.
April 22nd
Pastor April Gutierrez received a Master of Arts in Spiritual Formation and Evangelism from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and a Master of Arts from Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.  April has worked for more than a decade in higher education with a focus on first year students, and being in service both locally and globally. She has been married to her partner Evan for 15 years and has two children, Silvio and Miriam. As an avid reader and writer, April has earned national acclaim as a columnist writing on faith and spirituality. She enjoys exploring national parks throughout our beautiful country and taking in live jazz, folk, and Latin music.
April 29th
Pastor Hope Chernich serves as a part of the pastoral team at Irving Park United Methodist Church and United Church of Roger’s Park. She is committed to equipping congregations and individuals for effective ministry in the local church and community. Hope’s holistic approach to parish ministry merges organizational, administrative, and leadership principles with the inspiration and leading of the Holy Spirit. Trained in conflict resolution, mediation, cultural diversity, and appreciative inquiry, she provides support to churches that is both strategic and spiritual. She will graduate from Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary in May and will be commissioned as an Elder with the Northern Illinois Conference in June. She resides in Jefferson Park with her husband, David and her two children, Gabriel and Olivia.
May 6th


Rev. Mark Schol has been a paperboy, chicken carver, bartender, and pastor serving churches in Washington, DC and Chicago, IL. He has served at Grace Church for the last 6 years in the hipster neighborhood of Chicago, Logan Square. There, the congregation has been revitalized by understanding church is something you do, questions are good, and community can be built anywhere; growing worship from 9 to 50 with an average age of 35. Mark loves photography, graphic design, biking, Crab Rangoons, his wife Meredith and their energetic daughters, Elise and Nora.