It’s been three decades since HIV and AIDS invaded Chicago’s South Side and surrounded Bray Temple Christian Methodist Episcopal Church in Englewood. But it’s been less than three years since the little church on the corner of 73rd and Greenwood did anything to address the epidemic.
That’s when the Rev. Dorothy Williams arrived and made a change. As a female pastor in the black church, she already had confronted plenty of discouragement. But as a crusader who believes the church should work to stop the spread of HIV in the African-American community, she faced straight-up resistance.
With some trepidation, the elders at Bray have embraced her mission. The church offers periodic HIV testing, and some who have tested positive have sought the pastor’s advice on treatment.