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As members of this sangha we practice in ever-expanding circles of wisdom and compassion.  Sometimes, these circles sustain our practice, offering us wisdom, example and never-failing help.  Sometimes, it is we who unsparingly sustain the practice and lives of others with spiritual and material aid.

The mission of the Center has been and will continue to be first and foremost to provide an environment for the wholehearted practice of Zen.  A member may, as an outgrowth of his or her practice, feel inclined to be personally generous with his or her time and talent and resources, and the Center is particularly connected to these service opportunities:


Interfaith Action of Evanston is "a non-profit organization whose mission is to bring together communities of faith and spirit to serve people who are hungry and homeless and to express shared values through action and interfaith dialogue."  The Chicago Zen Center is happy to be affiliated with Interfaith Action. In the past, sangha members have banded together to host a soup kitchen, while others have volunteered their time individually.  More information can be found on their


The Kannon Society is a committee of the Center whose purpose is to coordinate assistance to members in need.  We all occasionally face difficult circumstances where a little support – financial, logistical, physical or emotional – can make a big difference.  The Kannon Society stands ready to gather whatever human and material resources might best address the need.  Just notify any of the Kannon Society members, or email, to see what might be arranged.

Current Kannon Society members:

Yusan Graham

Fran Spellman

David Shonberg

The operations of the Kannon Society are funded by member donations, not from the general Zen Center funds.  If you wish to make a donation to the Kannon Society, please indicate on your donation that this is your intention.

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