joon & Julie hwang


Joon Hwang was born in Korea, grew up in Canada, and began his children & youth ministry as a college student of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, IL. After graduating from college, he continued to study (M.Div from the Trinity Evangelical Divinity School & M.A. from the North Park Theological Seminary) and led several youth ministries in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. He came to New Life Church as a youth pastor in 2004, became an English Ministry pastor in 2010, and is now the lead pastor of New Life Covenant Church since May of 2011. He is ordained in the Evangelical Covenant Church. Joon loves to meet people, network with pastors and churches, and eat all kinds of food. He also has a burning passion to see revival and the transformation in the Chicago region. Joon is married to Julie and they have 2 sons and 2 daughters.

Julie was born in Korea, raised in the USA and Korea as an ambassador's kid. She is a graduate of Moody Bible Institute, majoring in Missions and also studied Christian Education. Her calling is to serve Jesus in anyway or form He calls her to and her mission is to live out for Jesus to the extreme. She sees everything in her life as a training session and an opportunity to be intimate with the Lord. Her favorite thing to do personally is writing a journal with a cup of coffee and yummy bread of some sort. 

leo taechol kim

assistant PASTOR of spiritual care

Leo (Taechol) Kim was born and raised in South Korea and became a Christian in the Philippines where he spent his early 20s. He came to the U.S. as an undergraduate student in 1997 and earned a B.S. in Business Administration at Murray State University. He continued his studies at the University of Kansas and graduated with a M.A. in economics. Additionally, he was trained in the Discipleship Training School (DTS) program at Youth With A Mission (YWAM), and continued to serve as part of the staff in Chicago. He has also served as a worship leader in many local churches. Before joining New Life Covenant Church, he earned a Doctorate Degree in Practical Ministry from the Wagner Leadership Institute in Chicago and subsequently served as a director at the Wagner Leadership Institute. Leo is currently pursuing his Master of Divinity from North Park Theological Seminary. He is licensed within the Evangelical Covenant Church. Leo loves all kinds of music and people from all nations. He has passion for building the Kingdom of God here on earth. Leo is married to Esther and they have three daughters: Olivia, Nora and Evania.

Grace lee & Michelle Hur

children's ministry directors

Grace Lee (left) land Michelle Hur (right) both have a heart for the next generation as they have been involved in many different youth and children’s ministries and programs. Michelle is currently an elementary school teacher while Grace is pursuing social work as a student. They hope to see the children at New Life Covenant Church find their identity in Jesus and become intimate, passionate, and radical followers of Christ. 

dennis gilmer


Dennis Gilmer was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia. He received his call to study at Mount Zion International School of Ministry in Grantville, PA (now called Summit International School of Ministry) by much prayer in Alabama where he spent a few years of his life. Dennis started school in the fall of 2006 and graduated with a diploma in the spring of 2009. He then began to further his studies at Lancaster Bible College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania and earned a B.S. in Bible Christian Life and Ministry. Dennis moved his family to Chicago in August 2013 and found New Life Covenant Church in January 2016 and it has now become their home church. He is now enrolled in the MDIV program at North Park Seminary and has a great desire to help others know Christ as well as help others grow in their relationship with Christ. He is married to Zaya and they have 1 daughter, Liana.