100 Years of History
Sherman UMC was founded in 1922 by Mrs. Lula B. Sherman, an African-American woman and resident of Evanston, Illinois—and our church building is a historic landmark. We are proud of our heritage as the only historically African-American United Methodist congregation on the North Shore founded by a Black woman.
For the past 100 years, Sherman United Methodist Church has served the Evanston and North Shore community, including neighboring institutions of higher learning, such as Northwestern University and Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary.
Rev. Dr. Aaron McLeod, Esq. became pastor to Evanston’s Sherman United Methodist Church in July 2023. He finds profound joy in leading worship, preaching the Gospel, teaching the Bible and providing pastoral care to God’s people.
Rev. McLeod has served as general counsel for a church, chief executive officer of a faith-based community development corporation, co-founder of a nonprofit corporation that focuses on the revitalization of Black churches, and an adjunct faculty member at the undergraduate and graduate levels. He earned the Doctor of Ministry degree from McCormick Theological Seminary; his Master of Divinity from Harvard University and his law degree at the University of Iowa.
For more than 100 years, we’ve been ministering to the North Shore community. This has included longstanding commitments to and collaborations with local partners, including Garrett Evangelical Theological Seminary, Interfaith Action of Evanston, Connections for the Homeless, Good News Partners, Evanston NAACP, Chicago Black Methodists for Church Renewal, and Shorefront Legacy Center–which the church hosts.
Fisk University Choir
Save the Date:
2024 Fisk Convert Friday, October 18th
Every October we host the Fisk University Choir for a single night in concert. This benefit concert raises money to support the ministries of Sherman UMC and to provide scholarships to students of Fisk University.
Over the past years, we have seen this concert grow from humble beginnings to a cornerstone of our ministry. While always paying homage to the original Fisk Jubilee Singers’ introduction of spirituals to the world, this choir’s repertoire encompasses the full range of African American sacred music.
Isibani is the Zulu word for beacon or lamp. The Sherman United Methodist Church Isibani Awards are given to honor those that have made extraordinary contributions to our community and culture. They honor those that are beacons of light, who have led the way and made others’ lives better.