PBS to Air Radical Disciple: the Story of Father Pfleger

Pfleger and Hercules at Columbia College screening

When I attended the screening of Radical Disciple at Columbia College in January I can remember thinking, “wow, great film, but too bad no one will see it”.  The lines of media distribution certainly would make it hard for a little film like this to see the light of much day.  But then came along public television!

PBS is airing Radical Disciple this Wednesday, August 4 at 8pm.   The film by Bob Hercules attempts a balanced look at Father Michael Pfleger, a priest that garners equal parts respect and controversy in and around Chicago for his outspoken stances.  There may be no finer example of what a modern day prophet should look like nor a finer example of the angry bee hive one steps into by taking prophetic stances.

The film explores issues of racism, the power of the media, and the tension between different theological paradigms.  Most importantly though, the film is a personal look at the experiences which empower one individual to become clarion voice for justice in an unjust world.

Read about the initial screening of Radical Disciple on one of this blogs early posts.


About urbancongress

The Congress on Urban Ministry is a biennial conference that explores faith, social justice, and urban ministry as we seek a spirituality and a way of life that actively creates peace. Students, pastors, and community organizers engaged in and passionate about peace, social justice, and transformational urban ministry who attend often find this event to be the single most inclusive gathering of resources for ministry in the city and beyond. View all posts by urbancongress

4 responses to “PBS to Air Radical Disciple: the Story of Father Pfleger

  • urbancongress

    Radical Disciple will also re-air on Sunday, August 8, at 4 pm.

  • Tony

    I’m a Chicago land life-time Roman Catholic. I’ve never read very much about Father Pfleger other than the news stories he generates. I do believe racial injustice must always be met head-on, and Father doesn’t shirk in that respect, as the film aptly shows. My only fault with the film, and I’m sure some bodies made this choice, was that there was no representation of what happens at Sunday mass up on that altar. The sacredness of the Holy Eucharist. The sacrifice of the mass. Not even for one minute did the film address that aspect. It could have been any black Protestant church on a Chicago Sunday morning. I have to believe that those parishioners know they are Roman Catholic and all that it entails, but I saw nothing to lead me to believe that. I’m left with thinking all of that is a second priority with Father. Letting Sharpton share the homily, like the woman in the film says, is definitely a no-no. I have to believe that Cardinal George made the reinstatement decision based on the comments that that church would lose those parishioners in one week if he was replaced, which tells me many of those people are not truly converted to Catholicism. Father has his priorities out of synch. What he does with racism is important, but what he represents on that altar can never take second place to anything else. Thank you.

  • Fr. Pfleger’s Fireworks – Whose Church Is It, Anyway? « Marking Time

    […] of Bob Hercules’ excellent Pfleger film “Radical Disciple” at last summer’s Congress on Urban Ministry. That conference was and is primarily a Protestant […]

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