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Fr. Pfleger Delivers More Radical Politics from the Pulpit

Patrick Archbold 29 May 2008 38 Comments

This video must be seen to be believed. This is the Rev. Michael Pfleger speaking at Jeremiah Wright’s Church. Fr. Pfleger is a Roman Catholic Priest who is in the Obama camp. Sorry, I take that back. It is much worse than that. I do believe he prefers Obama over Jesus.

If you don’t like Obama, why then you are a racist. Watch this amzing and outrageous video of Rev. Pfleger.


  • John Powers (author) said:

    Note that Fr. Pfleger is also a board member of All Chicago Children’s Museum Committee, a committee set up to provide PR support for taking over a public park for private enterprise.

  • Diane (author) said:

    I hope people don’t think this rogue, show-off of a priest is anymore representative of the church than the rogue priests who sexually abused young parishioners. He’s a disgrace. Pray for the church.

  • Dan Kelley (author) said:

    This is an abomination. In the past such an outrageous performance would result in disciplinary action against a priest conducting himself in a manner similar to Reverend Pfleger.

    This is totally unacceptable and ought to be reported to the authorities in Rome.

  • AW (author) said:

    This is the fruit of Obama’s messege, folks. Somehow his hope and change messege has brought out the worst in people. Whether that was Obama’s intention or not, this kind of hate has emerged all across America among his support base who feel entitled for some reason to belittle and degrade others. Obama may be a fine president, he may be a decent person…but I want nothing to do with any candidate who has this kind of effect on people, let alone vote for him to be our president. 4-8 years of this? No thanks.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    I’m not as troubled by this rant (if I were RC that might be different).

    I was bothered Pfleger’s support for Sister Muhammed on the Hate Crimes Commission was overlooked.

    Obama’s denounced Pfleger now for this rant on HRC but most Chicago liberals, including Obama, went silent over the Sister Muhammed debate.

    That touched a State Commission and that she went unchecked is sad.

    Pfleger just looked out of SNL and HRC tough enough to take it..

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    What did he say that wasn’t true?

    His style leaves a little to be desired, but what were his main points?

    1. That the current generation of ‘whites’ have benefited from past white supremacy. MY blue collar family here is Western PA survived the 1930s Depression, in part, because they had family farms to fall back on. Doing some research, I found all the original deeds had ‘free white males only’ in them, and in one form or another, these ‘covenants’ lasted in this township up to the 1950s. There were always ‘free’ Blacks here (some slaves, too), but I remember three Black families living down a dirt road from us, squatting and surviving by picking from the local dump. ‘Why do they live there?’, I asked my Dad. ‘Because they have no place else to go,’ was the answer.

    Father Pfleger’s truth, that you and others want to hide from, is that this country was build on affirmative action for whites from day one, and far too many are still in denial, especially when those structures, and their legacy, is challenged by those seeking to even things up.

    2. Connecting Hillary’s tears to this is a stretch, but she’s fair game on it when she ties ‘hard-working’ to ‘blue-collar whites. As an African-American women Obama organizer here in Aliquippa, Pa put it to me last week, ‘What about us hard-working, blue-collar Blacks. We’ll be sitting at the same lunch table as these folks long after she’s gone.’

    Pfleger didn’t even tell you to vote for Obama or call all whites ‘racists’ here, but said too many were either ignoring or buying into the view that they had no responsibility to deal with racism. That’s the message of the Catholic church, that racism is a sin, and all whites in America are connected to it by a thousand threads, whether they like to admit it or not. The real question is acknowledging it and doing something about it–and you don’t have to vote for Obama, or even vote at all, to take up that task.

  • Tom Aquinas (author) said:


    The Catholic Church also teaches forgiveness, something that Fr. Pfleger has reversed into group guilt for individual sins, which sure sounds like racism to me.

    In the Catechsim it is pretty clear that children are not guilty of the sins of the their fathers. Pfleger ignores it to score political points with a receptive audience.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    He didn’t say we were guilty of the sins of our fathers–only that we often benefited from them, to one degree or another. To willful ignore those benefits or deny their existence, I’d probably tag with the sin of false pride.

  • Tom Aquinas (author) said:

    But the man is a Priest, supposedly capable of making judgment, and identifying sin. When a person condemns the very innocent from the altar, it sure sounds like heresy to me.

    Pfleger is practicing vile partisan politics defaming a wide stretch of people to score a cheap point.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    Yes, he is a priest, and a good one. And I don’t see him ‘condemning’ the ‘innocent’ one bit. If you listen carefully, you won’t find it there.

    What I do see him challenging those trying to avoid or deny their social responsibility to those they have made ‘The Other,’ precisely because the have benefited from the sins of their ancestors, even if they have not indulged in those sins themselves. In fact, it’s a challenge precisely to all with ears to hear to live up to the Gospel of Jesus Christ regarding your brothers, your neighbors and the strangers among you.

    You’re on very thin ice challenging him with ‘heresy’ here. The ‘Good News’ doesn’t INITIALLY make everyone comfortable, and the Good Father here is trying to get you outside your comfort zone to a higher truth.

    I’d think this over a little more deeply if I were you, especially if you regard yourself as a practicing Christian. And as I said, it has nothing to do with who you vote for, or if you vote at all.

  • Tom Aquinas (author) said:

    If it doesn’t have anything to do with partisan politics, why does Pfleger insist on an overtly political setting to name names in a bizzare political statement?

    Broad brushed condemnation of groups, red, white, yellow, black is inexcusable. When it comes from the pulpit it certainly could be considered heretical.

    The message of Christianity that Jesus (and not Marx) redeems us from our sins. Marxist appeals make me uncomfortable because of the unworkable and often violent nature of Marxism, not because of some imagined connection between Marxism and Christianity.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    I never said it was separate from politics.

    What I actually think is that Pfleger, like myself and many, many others, are fed up with a relentless media campaign, centered with Hannity-Fox and crew, that is trying to smear Obama with a wholly concocted batch of drivel, an out house full of it to go along with Hillary’s kitchen sink, that is racist and demogogic at it’s core. Good grief, Hannity attacked Rupert Murdoch as an al-Quaeda supporter the other day, because he said he ‘liked’ Obama and would like to meet him.

    To listen to them, you’d think the main racist in America was Barack Obama and all these rightwing champions of ‘white workers’ are color-blind upholders of Dr. King. Spare me. I live out here in Raccoon Township, Beaver County, Western PA. We got 20 percent for Obama in our 99 percent ‘white’ township, and may get over 50 percent in November, but I guarantee you, in the core of the opposing camp, there are precious few who care much for Dr. King either.

    Besides, none of this crap about Obama ‘ties’ has any substance. With six degrees of separation and my trusty ‘Google,’ I can ‘tie’ you or anyone politically active to advocates of Biblical slavery and worse.

    Obama has a platform and policies. If you want to criticize him, start there. I do. I get on his case on a number of things. But that takes serious work and a brain, plus it’s mainly effective if you spell out an alternative policy or program.

    But now McCain’s going to get a taste of this crappy tactic as well, not so much from Obama, as from a bunch of bored amoral pundits. Only his ‘preachers’ make Obama’s look like Quaker elders.

  • Tom Aquinas (author) said:

    I doubt it,

    Fr. Pfleger is a vaudville performer who happens to be a priest. The man is naturally drawn to the limelight and will put on a phony southern accent if he can get an audience.

    Pfleger loves being in the show, causing a commotion, working as a paid shill for lobbyists, offering up death threats as liturgy, being a panel expert on ABC-7, anything but acting as a Catholic Priest brings him into the game.

    Pfleger was listed as some sort of Catholic Advisor to Obama, and the pro-abort Senator referred to him time and again as offering some sort of legitimacy from Holy Mother Church until Obama threw him under the bus last night. Twenty years in the pews with Rev. Wright is not some kind of “six degrees of separation” coincidence.

    I suspect that about 90% of the reason that blue collar workers won’t vote for Obama is that he is a Leftist who works against American Prosperity to further his political power grab. The fact that he has a bunch of nutcase clergy enlisted as spiritual advisers pretty much seals the deal that no sensible person should vote for him.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:


    The real problematic thing is how quick Obama throws Pfleger and the others overboard.

    I could make a case for Pfleger… after all, Keyes came out for reparations too… you can turn this into a Black Nationalist line (and could sound mighty conservative too… Farrahkan can do that sometimes with Black Capitalism).

    These are folks (including yourself) Obama has a long history with… he doesn’t defend them at all… it’s just when they get some notice for their loud mouths… he dumps them.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    …not that you have a loud mouth Carl…sorry…I’ve never seen you speak. But you certainly go way back to 95 with Obama.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    Father Pfleger does rather well at St Sabina’s; his flock thinks so. As a youngster, if I had someone like him as a parish priest, rather than the Franco-admirer I had, I’d probably still be tightly connected.

    I don’t particularly care for his style at times, but then people like me aren’t filling up his pews.

    Yes, Bill, I met Obama in 1995, along with some Acorn ladies, for less than an hour. I later lobbied him to spend some state money on learning centers with computers for inner city kids, which he did. I was one of several inviting him to speak at our first antiwar rally, but never talked to him that day. A little later, I said hello to him at a fundraiser for his senate race for two minutes.

    That the complete total of my ‘connections’.

    I’m an ‘acquaintance,’ not a ‘friend’ and if he remembers my name, it’s because of bugging him to spend money on the learning centers.

    But if you look out there in rightwing cyberspace, I’m the dreaded ‘terrorist’ and ‘Communist Mentor’ responsible for shaping the ‘Marxist Obama.’ I kid you not.

    And this crap gets bounced around as ‘Research’ and ‘Fox-Hannity truth.’ Spare me. These guys have such tiny brains that they wouldn’t know serious research or polemic if they saw it.

    Valerie Jarret is his real mentor, but she’s too respectable for these people, no ‘red meat’ for them to toss around.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    I take flak for having kind words for the Iraqi Communist Party.



    Look at the list of supporters for Pfleger’s Raise the Roof fund, including Andy McKenna.. http://old.saintsabina.org/

    Obama’s kept company here togehter with a lot of other Chicagoan’s and Pfleger’s rant is nothing new. Plenty of folks need to explain what they’re thinking here.

    It’s just when it’s suddenly noticed by a wider audience not aware of the “crazy uncles” in Chicago’s attic, then everybody baildd on the Father.

    Kind of like so much of the left’s bailed on their Iraqi comrades…

    Iraqi Communist Raïd Fahmi in L’Humanite per Political Affairs


    What we need, is for those who support the independence of Iraq, and this country’s development, wherever they may be in the world, to express their solidarity for those who are fighting for these objectives. Unfortunately, stances have been taken by some of these forces which play in favor of political currents which are opposed to democracy. On the one hand, they talk about democracy and secularism, but in fact, they take positions which weaken, rather than reinforce the democratic and progressive trends in the country.

    …no kidding. Today’s Left will bail on you in a minute when the winds change. No one’s singing Solidarity for Ever.

  • Tom Aquinas (author) said:

    As a former parishoner has told me, Fr. Pfleger has driven away 3x the number of Catholics that he has ever brought in to the Church.

    The Pfleger-Acorn axis drove the Catholic Campaign for Human Development into the ground, till the Archdiocese noticed that Acorn was a Marxist organization, dedicated (much like “Republican” Spain for that matter) to the destruction of the Church.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    Tom, I worked as a computer consultant with ACORN for years. They organize low-income people and wage plenty of class struggle, but they’re not ‘Marxist’ in any way. Unless you want to call every trade union and low-income community group in the country ‘Marxist.’

    I know some of you might do that, but it’s just silly among serious people.

    Bill, you’re not alone in taking the Communist Party of Iraq seriously. They were the largest communist party in the Arab world by far, based mainly among the Shia poor, but non-sectarian and secular. They were, that is, until the CIA paired up with Saddam and wiped out 100,000 or so of them–Saddam for his reasons, the CIA for our ‘Cold War’ reasons. If you wonder why the secular left and progressives are so weak in that part of the world against the Salafists (bin Laden & crew), that’s part of the answer. Now we have the ‘unintended consequences’ to deal with.

    (And for you ‘researchers,’ see if you can find the ‘ties’ between Rumsfeld and the supply-source for Saddam’s poison gas used on them and others. You might be surprised)

    The CP of Iraq paid a heavy price, and if anyone deserves some respect there, they do. The survivors still active are widely respected in Iraq in circles far beyond their own. They oppose both theocracy and US occupation, which is complicated, to say the least, and are operating both within the government and in the secular opposition to the occupation, such as the recent Oil Workers demand for the US to leave its hands off their oil.

    The attacks on them from the Trotskyists and a few others on the US ultraleft reveal more about their own ignorance and arrogance than anything about Iraq.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    If Obama went to Iraq, it would be nice to see him meet with Iraqi Trade Union leaders. That would bring some deserved attention to them.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    I hear Obama quit Trinity today. But knowing you guys, it won’t do him a damned bit of good. It won’t matter one bit, save for the Trinty shut-ins hounded by the press. Maybe they’ll get some relief. Meanwhile, some other phony sleaze will be invented to take its place. All of you in Chicago know Trinty UCC is a decent church, and for a man and his family to be hounded out of it is a disgrace.

  • Weekly Reader (author) said:


    Please identify what institutions of learning bestowed any type of degree upon you. It (they) should immediately be put out of business, decertified and razed to the ground.

    I do share your outrage though; shut-ins being hounded by the press, morons having to post ad nauseum on the internet defending Pfleger, Sister Muhammed, et al. What is this country coming to when race-baiters and hate-mongers on the left are questioned or their incendiary rhetoric challenged?

  • Little Gal (author) said:

    “As a former parishoner has told me, Fr. Pfleger has driven away 3x the number of Catholics that he has ever brought in to the Church.”

    From viewing the parish website and youtube videos, this parish doesn’t look very Catholic. Any idea what goes on there?

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    Father Pfleger has a longer resume with more awards than three or four people. He often gets in trouble with the hierarchy and rubs some people the wrong way, but his church is vital and thriving, and has done tremendous work in his community. As for ‘this parish doesn’t look very Catholic,’ well, I suppose that might depend on what image of ‘looking Catholic’ you have in your mind.

    I’ve dealt with real race-baiters all my life, beginning in Mississippi in the 1960s. I know exactly what they say and do, and there’s not much of it on the left. This notion that Obama and his campaign is the main source of racism in our country, while the ‘color-blind’ antidote is Hannity-Fox-Savage, is so weird and bizarre, one hardly knows what to say. It would make George Wallace blush.

    But massive change is on the horizon; I would have never thought it a year ago, but we actually have a decent shot at winning this.

  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    Carl writs… “All of you in Chicago know Trinty UCC is a decent church, and for a man and his family to be hounded out of it is a disgrace.”

    Makes one wonder how Obama would hold up against Ahmadinejad then.

    Your right Carl. I’m guessing the life of the Church and the Pastor’s words two different things. I’ve said this over at Fran Eaton’s Illinois Review (just how different is Black Lib Theology from Irish or Polish Catholicism…ethnic pride fine tradition in Chicago).

    I belong to a UU Church and can tell while our Minister no Wright or Pfleger, the life of our Congregation and the pronouncements of the National UUA are two different things.

    I belong to my Church’s Social Justice Committee. I’ve written every Bush supporter, every Lieberman Democrat, who belongs in a Liberal Church should participant in those kinds of committees. I’m not certain Obama was that active in the life of his Church to show how he may have checked some of Wright’s words.

    The bottom line here though is Wright was using Obama. He was riding Obama’s fame when he went and spoke at the National Press Club. Wright and Pflager did not serve Obama well and Obama should have had the smarts to understand what grandstanders these men would be in his life.

  • John Powers (author) said:


    I would say from a layman’s view, Liberation Theology is quite a bit different from what is regarded as Irish or Polish Catholicism.

    Irish and Polish Catholicism have very little connection with Marxism or Socialism, rather Christ, via the Eucharist, is at the center of the faith.

    There are devotions in the national churches that are stressed more than others (Grotto’s to the Virgin Mary in Lithuanian Parishes, for example or Statuary of St. Jude among the Irish), but any attention to politics is usually seen as an extreme measure, rather than a core liturgy.


  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    I can’t say I know much about it.

    My only thought was if someone wants to show pride in their Heritage, that’s fine with me.

    I always thought the problem with Wright’s Church though was it’s politics rather than it’s theology and a lot of that politics is United Church of Christ politics… hardly unique to Wright.

    Wright just gives the politics some showmenship.

  • Little Gal (author) said:

    “As for ‘this parish doesn’t look very Catholic,’ well, I suppose that might depend on what image of ‘looking Catholic’ you have in your mind.”

    That was my point. Fr. Pfleger is a priest and his primary duty is propagating the Faith and administering the sacraments. Although I notice that alot of material has very recently (yesterday) been removed from the St. Sabina website, much of what is on there does not denote that it is a Catholic parish. If Fr. Pfleger was not a priest and a private person he could spend all of his time doing social activism in any community he wanted. But, he is a priest and has an identified mission. Someone made a comment here about 1/3 of the parishioner’s leaving when he came, well with no evidence of sacramental instruction going on there, one wonders, if the current 2100 parishioners are Catholic. They don’t have Mass, but ‘Worship Services’. A female is listed as the associate minister for the Church. Women are allowed to give homilies. Other odd things are going on during whatever kind of service is held there. BTW, if someone know whether Confession is offered at the parish I would like to know. My point is that there are many levels of irregularies going on with Fr. Pfleger, including whether he has built a non-Catholic parish.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    The Catholic Church has a fine tradition of social activism and working for social justice, here and around the globe. The achievements of St Sabina in things like housing for the elderly and programs for the young, which fit right in with that tradition, are quite remarkable.

    Ask for your other questions, it’s easy enough to find out. Go to St Sabina’s on a few Sundays yourself , listen and ask around.

    As for ‘liberation theology,’ in modern times, it developed wholly within the Catholic church in Latin America, under conditions where archbishops are assassinated and nuns raped and slaughtered, and then spread to other faiths.

    As for Black liberation theology, it has deeper roots in the American tradition, wherein Black slaves, only allowed access to the Christian Bible, read its teachings in a different fashion than those of their slavemasters. They used in to survive as a community in the harshest of conditions, and fashioned it as a tool to challenge those conditions. A good case can be made that they were far closer to the message of Jesus than those who kept them in bondage, or later kept them under the foot of Jim Crow, and the far right ‘Christian’ theocrats today arguing for a return to ‘Biblical slavery’ once the US Constitution is purged of its ‘secular humanism.’

  • John Powers (author) said:


    I don’t know where you get your history, but no, the Authoritarian Left has not a lot to do with the Catholic Church.

    Fr. Pfleger has long advocated for dependency on government as some sort of pseudo Christian evangelizing. It isn’t, nor has it ever been part of Catholic Social Teachings in the last 100 years or so to force others to support your politics.

    Pfleger has done everything in his power to keep people away from self-sufficiency, jobs, and enterprise. His teaching is wrong, his delivery spiteful, and his effect on his own neighborhood a huge net negative.


  • Bill Baar (author) said:

    JB writes,

    His teaching is wrong, his delivery spiteful, and his effect on his own neighborhood a huge net negative.

    BB adds,

    and he didn’t do Obama any favors either….

  • Little Gal (author) said:

    In fact, I listened to a 1/2 hour of the “worship service” at St. Sabina before I went to MASS today. There was nothing in that 1/2 hour that corresponded to the Catholic liturgy. Apparently, Fr. Pfleger also has issues with the Roman Catholic liturgy.

    You are completely side stepping my point of the mission of a priest and what his primary role is. He needs to teach the faithful about the Faith and provide the sacraments. This may not matter though, I suspect if the archbishop got a copy of the parish registration list and tried to verify sacramental records, he would find that there are few Catholics worshipping at St. Sabina.

    BTW liberation theology has been rejected by the Catholic church as marxist.

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    All I can say at this point is some of you here are living in an alternate universe than most of Chicago, which recognizes Pfleger as controversial, but very positive for the city, especially its youth and elderly. Goodness, who has taken up the scourge of drugs and guns on the city’s youth the way Pfleger has?

    All ‘Little Gal’ has to do is go down to St. Sabina’s, visit with Phleger, and talk with his flock. From what I know about Catholic liturgy, having spend a few years of my life in the Church, is that it comes in different flavors. The Mass sung as ‘Missa Luba’ from Haiti is not going to sound like Bach or Gregorian chants. And if she asks The Father to hear her confession, my guess is that he will.

    I’m well aware that the higher ups in the Catholic church came to find liberation theology not to their liking and have rejected most of it, if not all. That’s their loss. I was talking about its roots, and it’s still widely practiced across Latin America among the parishes of the poor. As most of you know, if you held the actual practice of Catholicism in the US to strict conformity with Vatican pronouncements, you’d be purging a majority of the church here. Perhaps some of you would prefer that, but that’s another matter.

    As the Rev. Jackson says about himself, Pfleger is a work in progress. But like the Rev. Wright and his work, I’d judge it by more than a few barbs tossed Hillary’s way.

  • John Powers (author) said:

    Along with Sen. Obama and Sen. Edwards, Pfleger has spent quite a bit of time over the last few years trying to keep Wal Mart out of the City of Chicago.

    500 People line up to work in the proposed Chatham neighborhood Wal Mart, and Fr. Pfleger doesn’t think they need jobs. The South Side is a virtual desert for grocery stores (let alone fresh fruit and vegetables) and Pfleger lobbies to keep the worlds largest retailer from selling to poorer people.

    The man causes 10x the problems that he ever tends to. Young and old, rich and poor, Fr. Pleger is against the consumers of Chicago, and in favor of the culture of dependency.


  • Bill Baar (author) said:


    Re: Goodness, who has taken up the scourge of drugs and guns on the city’s youth the way Pfleger has?

    You’re right… no one else has including the politicans (including Obama) and the cops they hire… that the crime that ruins this city and our lives more then anything else is only mentioned by eccentrics like Pfleger says a lot about our city and it’s politicans.

    Democrats talke about stopping the way but they can’t stop the war in our own streets. We even have parades for the gangs… http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/974159,CST-NWS-parade28.article

  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    The opposition to Walmart in Chicago was not as simple as you describe. It was connected to a ‘Co-Mart’ proposal for development of a major ‘high road’ retail sector as an alternative that would have included local businesses, rather than putting them out of business, and offered unionization and benefits along the lines of Costco. So it wasn’t ‘No Jobs,’ but ‘More and Better Jobs.’ See clcr.org for the detailed papers and analysis. Walmart is not the only game in town, and far from being the best option.

    As for the crime problem, when you strip the prison system of its skills and education features to being purely punitive, then dump 25,000 ex-offenders on the city’s streets every year with no resources, what do you expect? I worked for five years training ex-offenders in computer repair skills. From my little classes, only one in three went back to prison, instead of the two-in-three average, but as I told the head of the IDOC when he visited us, I asked myself every day why I am doing this on a drop in the bucket basis? Why doesn’t the IDOC provide this as a matter of course? I’d love to debate some ‘law and order, lock ‘em up and throw away the key’ types on this issue. I’d mop the floor with them.

  • John Powers (author) said:

    Ridiculous Carl,

    There is now no Wal Mart in Chatham, and a huge empty lot, because a bunch of Lefty Alderman, “Religious” Leaders, and the SEIU continues its anti-poor campaign.

    Driving 500 entry level jobs out of the City, and the benefits of lower priced consumer goods is not Social Justice.


  • Carl Davidson (author) said:

    Walmart won on the West Side, though. Now we’ll see what ‘great benefits’ it brings to the businesses in the area.

    But you have a point. People in the city who should know better, and could do better, are also stalling ‘Co-Mart’ on the South Side, still working the angles to get WalMart in.

    There’s an in-between solution acceptable to all: invite Costco and Publix to fill the spot. That’s two high road companies–one unionized, the other a worker-owned coop, with decent pay and benefits, and the same range of goods and services at comparable prices.

    If jobs are your only concern, what’s wrong with that, instead of just dancing to Walmart’s tune?

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