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About

Our Past

For over 100 years, Bethesda Rehab & Senior Care has had a presence in the community that has empowered residents to live independent and full lives.

In 1907, Hildur Baade, along with a group of concerned Christians and friends, founded the Norwegian Lutheran Bethesda Home Association to serve the elderly people of the community. Their constitution stated, "The Society's aim is to build and operate a home where poor, old people can get a room, light and heat, and in that way administer Christian charity – first of all among our Norwegian people." With that, the Association opened the first community in 1911 with room for 19 residents.

In 1925, a new building to house 70 residents was constructed at the current location on Nordica Avenue under the name Bethesda Home & Retirement Center. This unique residential street provided a place to call home for residents. Major renovation and expansions continued in 1955, 1985, and 1990 and 2015 to allow Bethesda to expand community programs.

More than a century later, Hildur Baabe's legacy lives on. Bethesda's mission, then and now, puts residents first: to provide a place of comfort and security for older adults in the spirit of Christian love.

Our Present

Today, Bethesda Rehab & Senior Care operates under the Norwood Life Society, while maintaining a century-long tradition of providing personalized care that encourages residents to reach their maximum level of independence.

Bethesda is a Medicare and Medicaid certified community that offers long-term care, short-term rehab, respite care and adult day programming. As the premier post-acute and long-term care provider in Chicago, our mission is to provide a place of comfort and security for older adults in the spirit of Christian love.
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