Billy Shelper founded the Home Sweet Home City Rescue Mission in 1917 after attending a Billy Sunday revival meeting at the McLean County Courthouse. Shelper’s self-described goal was to help the city’s poor and downtrodden with Christian love. The first mission building opened at 233 E. Front St in Bloomington, coincidentally the site of his birth. The mission was forced to relocate several times during its history. It is now located at 303 E. Oakland in Bloomington with the name Home Sweet Home Ministries.
The Mission provides nearly 56,000 meals and 26,000 nights of shelter each year in its current five-floor facility. It also provides prayer services and clothing to its clientele. Throughout its existence, Home Sweet Home has provided special meals at Thanksgiving and at Christmas.