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The Moody Church

Senior Pastor

Chicago, Illinois

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Denomination: Nondenominational

Weekly Attendance: 1900

Location: Chicago, Illinois 

The role: The Senior Pastor of The Moody Church will shepherd, teach, and lead the congregation of The Moody Church toward the fulfillment of our God-given, Bible-based purpose: to evangelize, edify, and equip people to be true worshipers and effective representatives of Jesus Christ.

Sanctuary Wide Shot

Meet The Moody Church: 

A Church is Born

Dwight Lyman Moody, a traveling shoe salesman from Massachusetts, began a Sunday school mission for underprivileged children in Chicago in 1858.

By 1860, the school had relocated to North Market Hall, a larger facility which could accommodate more than 1,000 children and their parents who also began to attend. It soon became apparent that even this space was insufficient, and so in December 1864, the 1,500-seat Illinois Street Church was dedicated.

On October 8, 1871, just after Moody gave a sermon on Jesus’ life, the Great Chicago Fire swept the city. The Illinois Street Church burned to the ground. Moody immediately began to raise money to construct a new church. By 1873 a lot was purchased, and in June 1876 the Chicago Avenue Church was dedicated. D.L. Moody died in Northfield, Massachusetts in 1899 after becoming ill while on an evangelistic campaign. 

The Moody Church in the Twentieth Century

The Moody Church’s present home was dedicated on November 8, 1925. In 1930, Dr. Harry Ironside took the pulpit and led The Moody Church through the Great Depression. During this time of national crisis, the radio ministry grew in importance as Ironside's messages were broadcast to thousands of homes by the Moody Bible Institute’s radio station. In the 1950s and early 60s, The Moody Church faced new challenges due to changing demographics; many members moved to the suburbs, leaving a transient population behind. The Lord called Dr. Alan Redpath to shepherd the church through this time from 1953 to 1962.

After Dr. Redpath’s resignation, The Moody Church was without a senior pastor for three years until the arrival of Dr. George Sweeting, who served from 1966 to 1971, followed by Dr. Warren Wiersbe from 1971 to 1978. These were rebuilding years for the church.

In 1980, Dr. Erwin Lutzer became the senior pastor, and is now the longest-serving pastor in the history of the church. In 2005, the first major construction project was undertaken since the building was erected in 1925. The Christian Life Center was dedicated in 2007 and has allowed for the growth in ministries that we experience today.

The Moody Church Today

God has blessed The Moody Church in tremendous ways. We have seen an increase in our adult TMC Communities which minister to people from all walks of life; our TMC Kids ministry continues to thrive; our Media Ministry has expanded across the country and onto a digital platform, and we have hosted a variety of major conferences. More than 70 missionaries are supported by the church. As God wills it, The Moody Church will continue to be a trusted place where anyone can connect with God and others.

Christmas Concert-1

About the Senior Pastor:


He will shepherd, teach, and lead the congregation of The Moody Church toward the fulfillment of our God-given, Bible-based purpose: to evangelize, edify, and equip people to be true worshipers and effective representatives of Jesus Christ so that we all may “have confidence and not shrink from him in shame at his coming” (1 John 2:28).




Ministry Responsibilities

  • He will prepare and deliver messages for Sunday morning services (typically 40 weeks per calendar year) and will generally lead (but not necessarily deliver the message for) a similar number of Wednesday prayer meetings.

  • He will lead other church services and functions as appropriate. He will give direction to our worship services in cooperation with the Worship Committee.

  • He will primarily preach expository sermons drawing out from the biblical text, and bringing to bear in our lives, those truths that God intended to communicate to us.

  • He will, in conjunction with the Elders, develop goals to ensure the successful implementation of the vision, direction, and strategy of the church.

  • He will transition to become the host of Moody Church Hour (with the expectation that this transition will be completed before the end of the second year of his tenure). In concert with the Managing Director of Media, he will develop other digital and broadcast media as appropriate.

  • He will be available to the congregation for counseling and ministry needs as appropriate.

  • He will represent The Moody Church to the wider community through missions challenges, media opportunities, Bible conferences, etc.

  • He will serve as the Chief Administrative Officer of The Moody Church.

  • He will provide direct supervision and goal setting for the Executive Pastor and the Managing Director of Operations.

  • He will perform other duties as assigned by the Elder Council.


  • He will be a member of the Elder Council and the chairman of the Leadership Council.

  • He will report directly to the Elders and work with them in all matters related to the ongoing ministry of the church, such as budgets, future directions, staff issues, etc.

  • He will lead meetings of the ministry staff and will chair the church’s annual and semiannual congregational meetings.

  • He will serve as an ex-officio member of all church bodies, including standing subcommittees.

Candidate Profile: What you bring: 

The following describes many of the characteristics of the ideal candidate for the Senior Pastor:


  • He will hold true to the church’s Constitution, including its doctrines and moral teachings.

  • He will honor the history of the church and prepare the congregation for the future.

  • He will protect the flock from false teaching and will seek the unity of the congregation.

  • He will, in concert with the Elder Council, establish the vision, direction, and strategy of the church.

  • He will have either a Master of Divinity or its equivalent, and will demonstrate that he is conversant in matters of theology and contemporary cultural issues.

  • He will have a servant style of leadership.

His Walk with God

  • He must meet the qualifications of an elder, as listed in 1 Timothy 3:1–7 and Titus 1:6–9 and as identified in the church’s Constitution.

  • He will continue to grow in his relationships with Jesus Christ, his wife, and his family.

  • He will devote himself to prayer and the ministry of the Word. He must have a burden for prayer and lead the congregation in seeking God regularly.

  • He will be known as a man of integrity, humility, and personal holiness.

  • He must delight in making other people a success through his personal mentoring and encouragement, and in his witness for Christ in personal relationships outside the church.

  • His wife must be a mature Christian woman devoted to the Lord, her husband, and her children (if any). She must be completely supportive of her husband’s role as pastor.

Personal Strengths

  • He must demonstrate a love for God and His Word, and a love for people.

  • He must demonstrate a God-given call to the ministry.

  • He must have the ability to preach, teach, and apply the Word of God in challenging, relevant ways.

  • He must have the ability to relate well with people from many different backgrounds and ethnicities. He must be mindful of our promise statement: “The Moody Church is a trusted place where anyone can connect with God and others.”

  • He must have strong, proven communication and leadership skills and experience.

  • He must have the ability to unify and mobilize people in pursuit of a common vision, for the benefit of both the church and the wider community.

  • He must have the ability to develop and lead a high-caliber ministry team.

Lake Michigan Baptism

What it’s like to live in Chicago, IL: 

Chicago, the “city of broad shoulders,” is more than just the third-largest city in the United States. It’s a place where history meets innovation and where global meets local. Nestled right on the shores of Lake Michigan, Chicago provides a near-perfect balance of big-city living and natural wonders. With 26 miles of public beachfront, 600 parks, and 18.5 miles of trails, residents have many opportunities to explore the beauty of God’s creation—all within a short distance from a vibrant and economically-driven downtown. Whether you enjoy museums or sprawling parks, fine dining or coffee shops, physical fitness or quiet contemplation, there’s something for everyone to love. 

The cultural environment in the city is world-class. The 35-acre Lincoln Park Zoo, one of the oldest zoos in North America, hosts a wide variety of exhibits and fun holiday activities for the whole family; not only is it located next to our church, but best of all, admission is free! The city’s museum campus—housing the Adler Planetarium, the Shedd Aquarium, and the Field Museum of Natural History—is located in the South Loop, right on Lake Michigan. The renowned Art Institute of Chicago, one of the oldest and largest art museums in the country, is the city’s #1 attraction. And for music lovers, the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Grant Park Music Festival, and Ravinia Festival provide ample opportunity for audiophiles. 

Chicago’s 77 vibrant and diverse neighborhoods also provide an amazing variety of experiences, both cultural and culinary. The city is undergoing a public-space renaissance, with new outdoor trails opening up opportunities for recreation and exploration. Public transportation is ubiquitous, and options include the elevated train (commonly known as the L), bike sharing, and even river taxis. Chicago’s culture exudes midwestern friendliness (yes, it’s real!) and more conservative values than other major cities in the United States. And our public and private schools are improving every year—a major reason why so many young professionals are moving to Chicago. 

When you live in Chicago, the skyline is the limit…there are so many exciting opportunities to explore. But to us, the most important thing is that Chicago is a city yearning for spiritual revival. Praise God, we’re beginning to see momentum in that direction as the Spirit of God is moving among its churches. The Moody Church has been blessed to be part of God’s work in this great city for over 150 years, and we’re excited to see how He is going to continue to work in and through us. This is a city of huge needs and wonderful potential, a mission field like no other. If you have a dream of sharing the good news of Jesus with this amazing city, and of building on D.L. Moody’s legacy by equipping our members to carry out the Great Commission, we think you’ll feel right at home here. 

Think you're a great fit for this role? Become a candidate below. 


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