Pfleger Talking About Leaving Catholic Church

CHICAGO (CBS) — The Rev. Michael Pfleger is renewing a threat to leave the Catholic Church if forced out of his pastorship at St. Sabina Church.

As WBBM Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports, back in 2001, when Francis Cardinal George first took steps to replace Pfleger at St. Sabina, the passionate priest threatened to leave the Catholic Church.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Bernie Tafoya reports

Pfleger is still at Sabina a decade later, and has been pastor there nearly 30 years.

Over the weekend, Pfleger told the public radio program “Smiley and West” that if it came to a choice to become principal of Leo High School, to become pastor of another Catholic church, or to leave the church, he would look at the third option.

But said he wants to stay in the Catholic Church.

Pfleger also said on the program that he has been banned from speaking at events, and blamed critics on the political right for the calls to remove him.

“There are two main groups that seemingly have put a big push on to get rid of me in the last year, and that is the right-wing conservative Catholics, and that is also the NRA, who said I have been much too vocal about assault weapons; much too vocal about guns being accountable; guns being registered to gun owners,” he said.

George said last month that he wants Pfleger to leave the pastorship at St. Sabina and take over Leo High School. But Pfleger said the school is “literally dying.”

“I’d have no power to do anything but sit there and raise money,” Pfleger said.

Pfleger said he would have been willing to take leadership of Leo High School under St. Sabina, and would like to hire a new principal there. But this was not present as an option.

“What they really want to do is take Sabina back to the 1950s, or take off this progressive thought – these people that speak for themselves, that speak up for themselves – and they want people to just go sit down in the pew and do what you’re told,” Pfleger said on the program. “Well I’ve got news for them. Whether Mike Pfleger is here or not, that ain’t going to happen at St. Sabina, because the people here are different people.”

Pfleger has plenty of supporters. A group of ministers, including some who met recently with Mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel, clearly doesn’t think Pfleger should leave St. Sabina and have rallied on his behalf.

Other priests, who preferred to remain anonymous, have also said they think the cardinal should just leave Pfleger where he is.

For their part, Leo’s faculty has given the impression they’re doing just fine without Pfleger.

The cardinal maintains that term limits – either six , or at the most, 12 years – are set by a council of priests. In the end, the cardinal himself has the final say on where Pfleger will be assigned.

  • Edward Ehrhadt

    I,Tried to leave a comment an something shut me down!! Pfleger should go,he does represent the Catholic Church anymore and its rules! He has his own religion,money girlfriends,boyfriends and needs to be checked by the government in regard to money he has stolen and put away for is own use and not the churches!

    • iirs

      I see why they “shut” you down.

  • Karen Madsen

    For many years, I have questioned Pfleger’s committment to GOD, which for any CHRISTIAN, comes before church and man. If he chooses to leave the Catholic Church b/c he didn’t get his way that would cement the belief that it is all about Pfleger. There is no doubt he has done well for St. Sabina, but also at his own self-serving gratification in relishing the attention from the public and the press. He is not humble. He should be sent to the poorest parish in the U.S. to assist those truly in need.

  • Native Chicagoan

    Pfleger should leave the Catholic Church and resign as a priest and join the regular community in the area of St. Sabina. He is so disrespectful to his “bosses.” For him to incite rhetoric, blaming right wing conservatives (guessing most not Catholic and don’t know Pfelgers) and the NRA is wrong and not truthful, and he knows it. For him to allege the Cardinal of Chicago wants St. Sabina to go back to the 50’s is nuts. It is obvious he is purposefully trying to make the situation a lot worse than what it is, especially for his replacement. He could have and should have done this gracefully. He still can attend mass at St. Sabina and keep in contact with parishoners there. But, this has nothing to do with politics. It is about power, which Father Pfleger clearly states as cited in this column. Oops. Father Pfleger, either hand in your collar and become a member of the community you love and cherish, or get reassigned which you knew all along can happen, and go to Leo HS and try to do God’s work there and visit St. Sabina often. You, I’m sure, would always be welcomed back as a guest priest to give a mass. Come on. Your choice which is showing itself to you is easy. Make one.

    • Gus B

      At least he raises money and supports the parrish he is assigned to. So what if he is radical in his way of getting attention for the good of the people,at least he is not self serving like others in the church.As a catholic I’ll support him rather then providing education,food,clothing, housing and a host of other things for the pediafiles the the church bosses are currently transfering and supporting.Leo High and all the other parrishes and schools would be self sustaining if it weren;t for all the pay outs. Get with it people,when you going to learn it is the church leaders and not Pfleger.

  • Chicago Citizen

    Let him go “Good Riddence” you self promoting hyprociate, I supported the Catholic church all my life but I’ll never support you!

    • mooster65


  • francess

    Pleaase, father do not go yet. We all need you right here i n the south side where there are thousands of souls that need to be saved. So recondier quitting. Cardinal George did not say yet if he will transfer you.
    Think about the lost souls that ate going to hell because there is no pastor t o help them.
    God bless you all.

  • jibida

    Wonder what the real story behind the story is?

  • bill

    He reminds me of a defiant teenager!If I don’t get my way ,then I’m going to take my ball home with me!He’s used the Catholic church for his own personal agendas!If you disagree with him,then you are most certainly wrong!He can start his own church in this land of the free!How can someone identify themselves with the poor when they have never been poor themselves?Oh,that’s right,he took a vow of poverty and obedience to become a priest!He’s failed at both!Go get a store front church father and then you can get your tax deductions!But then again,you don’t know what paying taxes is like anyways!Guns are not the problem.The breakdown of the family unit is the real problem!People are responsible for bad behaviors,not GUNS.Quit distracting the populace from the fact that there a lot of angry kids out there with no real family cohesiveness!They join gangs to feel part of something and use guns to defend what they think is theirs to defend!Father,you get your personal power from your “cause”but will never be bigger than the church!You are really acting like a omnipotent teenager and you are manipulating the Black community!GET REAL FATHER OR GET OUT!!!!!It’s really all about you anyways!Good Luck!

  • sick of bs

    Take your ball and go home.

  • John

    At least he’s not a kid blower.

    • Smiley

      How do you know that?

  • Ron

    See Ya! who really cares what this idiot does.

  • willie

    The church had no problem with Father Wall staying at Old St. Pats Chuch for decades. Maybe because that was Mayor Daley’s church and he said he did not want a new pastor.

    The church is upset because they wanted St. Sabina to fail, like the other parishes on the black south side and encouraged by the white flight to the suburbs.

  • TBone

    “What they really want to do is take Sabina back to the 1950s, before the black population was armed and killing each other by the dozens every week in Chicago, or take off this progressive thought – you know, the one that fostered hate in the community, against other groups, such as the white race, that I loath – and they want people to just go sit down in the pew and do what they’re told, which is what I should be doing but since I am the antiChrist, that will not work!” Pfleger said on the program. “Well I’ve got news for them. Whether Mike Pfleger is here or not, that ain’t going to happen at St. Sabina, because the people here are different people. I trained them to hate the white folks, and Francis Cardinal George is white, and they will never obey him, just me, the crazy hateful oreo.”

  • Just Asking

    Taken from Matthew the 7th Chapter:

    15 “Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. 16 By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? 17 Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.
    True and False Disciples
    21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’

    Is it possible that Father Pfleger has lost his way? He seems to want the camera and attention instead of being the servant that Christ has called us all to be. I am just asking.

  • Pfleger Talking About Leaving Catholic Church | Roman Catholic Church

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  • White Boy John

    We have all these idiots that are jealous and envious of a man of God. You idiots probably dont even attend any church!

  • Johannes Tetzel

    Can’t you hear the cries of your dead relatives calling out from Purgatory? When a coin in coffer rings, a soul from Purgatory springs!

    Just kidding, what’s the problem that everyone has w/this guy? He marches and calls attention to urban issues in his parish, yes? I’m sure that he isn’t squeaky clean, but is he really that bad?

    And yes- I attend mass every Sunday. So if I don’t see you this week, I will be very disappointed!

  • Millie E.

    Fr. Pfleger is nothing more than a Baptist preacher in priest’s garb!! Maybe he should really ask to be transferred to somewhere in the South!!

  • Ming Ocampo

    I am extremely proud to be a practicing Catholic and even happier that I don’t attend any church affiliated with Fr. Pfleger. He does not embody what it means to “die to Christ”. He is camera hungry, self-serving, and radical in his views. He likes to make comments that attack his so-called “Catholic faith”. I think it would be better if he went elsewhere.

  • Devon Pruitt

    Fr. Pfleger is a “Catholic” priest!!?? I doubt it…he’s more like those crazy pastors you see on Sunday TV….yelling, screaming, and “testifying”. I mean really….how many black people do you know that are really “Catholic”?? Not too many in this area…they all just show up to be entertained by this joke of a “priest” then go back to the streets and do what they do best….Obviously, Fr. Pfleger hasn’t been that much of an ispiration to them like he claims to be!

  • Angel

    The next thing you’ll see him do is dye his skin black. What hapened to his faith? Maybe he’s been hiding behind the cloak. Time will tell.

  • streamwood bill

    Who eally cares what this goof does! I guess he wan’t cut out to be a priest after all.

  • Ex-Catholic

    We’re all the same underneath the skin. We need to remember that we’re only here for a really, really short time.

  • Father Suck'em Off

    let this goofie go, he is a waana be white guy that wannabe black, note this,….jesus waspoor sletp on dirt, ate little …but big nose drives new car, wallet fat with cash, nice house….he’s no man of god folks he’s fleecing the poor for the little they have left….send this goof off to help them child molesting priest if he wants to help so bad, or go to kenya and take a ew back with you….man of god …man of demons

  • McFyre

    To the Good Reverend Michael “Darlin”, DON’T LET THE DOOR HIT YOU IN THE ASS ON THE WAY OUT!

  • Lets Get Gone People

    Start his own church, Pfleger Peoples Temple, move everyone to Pflegertown, Guyana. Have a Kool-Aid party, film at eleven.

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