Father Pfleger Suspended by Cardinal George

Father Michael Pfleger

Father Michael Pfleger

Father Michael Pfleger was suspended from his ministry at St. Sabina Catholic Church by Cardinal Francis George on Wednesday.

Pfleger recently rejected the Catholic Church’s offer to head Leo High School in the same neighborhood as his parish.

In a letter written by Cardinal George to the controversial priest, George said Pfleger’s public remarks that he would leave the Catholic Church rather than accept an assignment outside of St. Sabina led to his decision.

“If that is truly your attitude, you have already left the Catholic Church and are therefore not able to pastor a Catholic parish,” George wrote.

Click here to read the entire letter.

To see a timeline of Father Pfleger’s tenure at St. Sabina Church, click here.

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4 responses to “Father Pfleger Suspended by Cardinal George”

  1. Jennifer S. says:

    I don’t know that much about St. Sabina & Ft. Pfleger but I did see Channel 11’s documentary and what I see as the main problem here is Ft Pfleger does what he feels is best for his parish even if it goes against Carndinal George. He’s a passionate & independant thinker and what the church wants is a obedient priest who serves the church 1st and the parish 2nd. Perhaps if the church had more Father Plfegers there wouldn’t have been so many scandals. George needs to wise up and leave Ft. Plfeger at St. Sabina’s.

  2. Nikos Retsos says:

    Father Michael Pfleger started with very good intentions about 20 years ago, and teamed up with Father O’Connor on social issues such as gun control, too many liquor stores in the
    downtrodden and crime riddled black neighborhoods, and various city projects that deserved praise. And he achieved fame that idolized him to his parishioners, even though his actions were sometimes controversial to other ethnic groups and city citizens. But comparing him to other priests, he certainly stands out more as a crusader and social reformer, and less as a priest devoted to the divine mission for his congregation.

    Pfleger’s intermixing of his social activism and pastoral duties somehow placed him in the category of Allan Sharpton and Luis Farrakhan. But Father Pfleger’s anti-white racist rhetoric, which has made him so endeared to his black congregation, carried more weight because Pfleger is white and his rants sounded like an apology of guilt by the white race. That rhetoric was good for Father Pfleger to attain recognition of his name, but it was definitely detrimental to his subjects who have grown up with the “slave victim mentality,” and unable to advance up the social lander. Worse yet, Father Pfleger deemed that demagoguery as knowledge. “If we don’t give them the knowledge to love themselves, beyond the information that God loves them, we’re missing the boat at the prime time of building self-esteem,” he claimed. Was his way of building up self-esteem the right way?

    In the 1970’s, the Revered Jesse Jackson, decided to teach blacks to “stop complaining about racism, get out of the gangs, find a job, and go to school, if they want to succeed.”
    But Mr. Jackson soon realized that blacks did not want to hear that, and most stopped going to his rallies. Soon Mr. Jackson realized that he was becoming irrelevant to the psychic needs of his followers, reversed himself, and started again his anti- white racist rhetoric to retain his leadership status. Father Pfleger did exactly the same; without his
    anti-establishment rhetoric, he might have just been another unknown run-of-the mill priest.

    Did he educated his disciples and build their “self-esteem?” Not really. If he had done it, the legendary comedian-actor, Bill Cosby, who is also a Ph.D in Education, would not have had to launch a campaign around the U.S. a few years back, and tell blacks straight in the face: “Get out of the [racist] hole; stop beating your wife; go and stay in school; don’t be involved in drugs, and find a real job.” And that is a “way to built self-esteem;” not bashing Hillary Clinton with unsavory epithets for trying to prevail over a black guy – Barack Obama- in a democratic primary election. Cosby received wide applause from his blacks audiences, a proof that most blacks see advancement in the social status is a personal effort – not a given privilege nowadays. Barack Obama is a living proof.

    The era in which Father Pfleger, Jesse Jackson, Allan Sharpton, and Luis Farrakhan thrived as pioneers of advancement of the black people has become a relic of the past. Cardinal George is correct to return the St. Sabina church back into its religious mission. Father Pfleger can certainly enter the “Speaker’s Circuit” if he feels that his mix of religious and social evolution campaign is in demand at the national level. Nikos Retsos, retired professor

  3. Larry Schmidt says:

    The bottom line is that Fr.Pfleger is not self-employed but instead works for the Catholic Church and directly for Cardinal George.
    Pfleger has pushed the envelope many times with George and the Cardinal is finally fed up with Pfleger’s insubordination.
    Pfleger must obey his direct superior just as George would have to obey a direct order from Pope Benedict. Pfleger’s ego has gotten in the way.

  4. Linda Villalobos says:

    I like Fr. Pfleger and believe he has done much good for the St. Sabina Community. He has made catholicism relevant to an African American community by culturally integrating the church within the community it serves. After 30 years I think that Fr. Pfleger needs to help his congregation work with new pastoral leadership. He has built and helped to empower a faith community, and it should be strong enough to carry on. Fr. Pfleger has an opportunity to groom a new pastor and still be active within his community in other ways. I am sure he has cultivated active lay leadership who would support a new pastor. Fr. Pfleger and his parish should view this situation as one that is a positive recognition of their strength and ability to grow and face new challenges.