Around Town

Programs, Events & Volunteer Opportunities in & around Oak Park
Scroll below for 

Retreats, Spiritual Enrichment and Prayer Opportunities

Events to Support Local Organizations & Charities

Volunteer Opportunities to Support Local Organizations & Charities

Programs on Social Justice and Social Concerns

Resources for Families,  e.g. Camps in the area

Follow this link to find information available from the Archdiocese of Chicago


♦ Retreats, Spiritual Enrichment and Prayer Opportunities


Camino Pilgrims Gathering on September 19

Former and future pilgrims on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela (Way of St. James) are invited to a gathering on September 19 at Ascension Parish in Oak Park, from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Come to hear from French hôtes who welcome pilgrims from all over the world to their homes on the Via Turonensis (Paris-St. Jean Pied-de Port). Come for table discussion on our own camino: life lessons learned, friends made, graces received. Also present will be our newest Auxiliary Bishops, Mark Bartosic and Bob Casey, who themselves have walked the Camino. Refreshments will be served. Ascension Parish is at 808 S. East Avenue, Oak Park IL 60302. For more information call (708) 541-0204.


3rd Annual Archdiocesan-wide Mass for Domestic Violence Survivors

The Domestic Violence Outreach Ministry of Chicago invites you to the 3rd Annual Archdiocesan-wide Mass for Domestic Violence Survivors.  Join us to pray for an end to domestic violence on Saturday, September 29 at the 5:15 pm Mass at Holy Name Cathedral, Chicago.  Hospitality to follow. Contact Jan Burdulis at 773-841-3956 or for information or to volunteer to help.


The Well Spirituality Center Upcoming Retreats 

SAVE THE DATE: Growing Downward: Day Retreat with Gail Worcelo, SGM. Saturday, October 6  9:30 AM – 3:00 PM
Gail Worcelo is the author of Holy Ground: Where Catholic Tradition and the Universe Story Meet and cofounder of The Green Mountain Monastery in Vermont. Cost:   $100, includes lunch. Take advantage of our Early Bird Special Price of $75, through September 22nd.

1515 Ogden Avenue, LaGrange Park, IL. To register: online at, or call 708-482-5048


Bellarmine Jesuit Retreat House

October 2-4, 2018. An Ignatian, Silent Midweek Retreat for Women.  Retreat Master: Fr. Jeff Putthoff, SJ.  Retreat Title: Finding Our Wholeness

Go to the website via the link above to register and for a more comprehensive list of all upcoming retreats.

Joyful Again! Program For Widowed Men and Women

A spiritual program for widowed men and women who want to resolve the normal grief they feel and begin to live again. Workshops and retreats throughout the year., (708) 354-7211, Upcoming Program dates and locations: Oct  6 & 7 - St. Ann’s, Channahon. Nov 10 & ll  -  Nazareth Retreat Hse., Batavia. Nov 17 & 18 -  Our Lady of the Angels Retreat Hse., Lemont


Sisters of Providence to host Come and See Retreat

What are you looking for? Come and see if God might be calling you to a life full of joy as a Sister of Providence of Saint Mary-of-the-Woods. The retreat will take place on Oct. 26-28 at the spirit-filled Saint Mary-of-the-Woods, Indiana. Spend time with sisters in prayer, ask our younger sisters questions you may have and get to know our foundress, Saint Mother Theodore Guerin, while exploring where God may be calling you. The retreat is free and is for single, Catholic women ages 18-42. Learn more and register at link above.


Catholic Theological Union Fall Lecture Series

Lectures offered on Wednesdays at 7 pm from September 5-December 5, 2018. 


♦ Events to Support Local Organizations & Charities 


St. Bernardine Church Bingo and Raffle 

815 Elgin in Forest Park, Illinois. Saturday, September 22. Doors Open at 10:00 a.m. Bingo Starts at 12:00 p.m.  Call Joe to reserve seat: 630-392 0522


Rush Oak Park Hospital Classes and Events

Rush Oak Park Hospital offers a wide range of classes and events throughout the year — in your local community — to help you live a healthier, happier and more informed life.
ALL PROGRAMS ARE FREE, but registration is required. Call (708) 660-4636 or visit to register. Programs are held in the Rush Medical Office Building, 610 S. Maple Avenue, second floor, suite 2000, unless otherwise indicated.


♦ Volunteer Opportunities to Support Local Organizations & Charities 

Irving Elementary WORM Club Looking for Volunteers

At Irving Elementary School (1125 South Cuyler) we have a reading program for grades 1-3 called WORM Club (Working On Reading In The Morning). The program is held at Irving School in the library before school from 7:30 to 8:00 am on Mondays through Thursdays. Worm Club is for struggling readers where volunteers read with primary aged students working on their oral reading fluency and comprehension. Several of our volunteers are Ascension parishioners. You can volunteer as many days as you want and come when it best fits your schedule. The program starts in mid October and ends in late April. Please contact me via email if you are interested or if you have any questions. Nick Sakellaris (Ascension Parishioner) at


Cluster Tutoring needs you!

Help students from Chicago's Austin community realize their potential through one-to-one learning. Work with a student in grades K-12 for 90 minutes weekly on reading, homework, and other enrichment activities. We have a reading specialist, a computer room, math coaches, and a fully stocked library. Tutoring is 6:30-8 p.m.on Tuesdays at Pine Avenue Church, 5460 E. Augusta in Chicago, or on Thursdays at First United Church of Oak Park, 848 Lake St., and runs from September to mid-May. You can attend one of two information sessions for new tutors at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11, and Thursday, Sept. 13, both at First United. For more information, contact Executive Director Kara Kalnitz at 773-378-5530 or at, or check out

Help students from Austin realize their potential through one-to-one learning. Cluster Tutoring is 6:30-8 p.m. Tuesdays at Pine Avenue Church, 5460 W. Augusta in Chicago, or Thursdays at First United Church of Oak Park, 848 Lake St., and runs from September to mid-May. You can attend one of two information sessions for new tutors at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 11, and Thursday, Sept. 13, both at First United. For more information, contact Executive Director Kara Kalnitz at 773-378-5530 or at, or check out


Little City Foster Care and Adoption Program

As is part of our mission, Little City is constantly searching for welcoming homes and loving parents regardless of age, race, creed, gender, sexual orientation, income or education level. Details on our information sessions. Frequently asked questions.

Hines VA Chaplain needs Volunteer Help

The VA Chaplain needs a few volunteer ministers to assist veterans at their 11 am Sunday Mass services in Extended Care Center/Hospice at Hines VA, Maywood.  

If you are interested in volunteering to help the VA Catholic Chaplain, call and leave a message or email John Nally, 708-802-4847 or, for more information.


Check out our Volunteer page for volunteer opportunities at Ascension.


Area-Wide Programs on Social Justice & Social Concerns

Many opportunities available.  Go to our Peace & Justice webpage for current programs.


♦ Resources for Families

For a list of teen programs in and around Chicago, visit our Youth Ministry webpage