(RNS)— A outstanding Roman Catholic priest has been reinstated to his south Chicago parish after an investigation discovered that abuse fees in opposition to him weren’t credible.
The Rev. Michael Pfleger, longtime pastor of St. Sabina Catholic Church was suspended in October after the Archdiocese of Chicago acquired an allegation of abuse in opposition to him.
The archdiocesan Impartial Evaluate Board and Workplace of Little one Abuse Investigation and Evaluate, with assist from exterior investigators, reviewed the allegations in opposition to Pfleger, Cardinal Blase Cupich instructed St. Sabina parishioners in a letter Saturday (Dec. 10).
“The Evaluate Board has concluded that there isn’t a motive to suspect Father Pfleger is responsible of those allegations,” he wrote.
Plefger had been accused of abuse as soon as earlier than and was suspended as the costs had been investigated, then reinstated. His most up-to-date suspension was primarily based on alleged occasions from three a long time in the past.
The 73-year-old priest, identified for his activism in opposition to gun violence and for social justice, appeared at 5:00 p.m. Mass at St. Sabina, a outstanding Black Catholic congregation, on Saturday, according to the Chicago Solar-Instances.
“This has been very painful,” Pfleger instructed the congregation. “Thanks to your love, to your help and your prayers.”
Members of St. Sabina and Pfleger had vehemently denied the allegations in opposition to him. Church members labeled the allegations as a non secular assault.
A lawyer for the alleged abuse survivor instructed the Solar-Instances that the evaluation board’s discovering was hurtful to his shopper.
“We expect that the evaluation board’s discovering that the allegations had been unfounded will discourage different victims,” Hollander mentioned.
Cardinal Cupich acknowledged that Pfleger’s suspension had been laborious on St. Sabina.
“I wish to acknowledge that these months have taken an ideal toll on Fr. Mike and all of you, and I’m dedicated to do the whole lot attainable to see that his good title is restored,” he wrote.
Cupich reminded the congregation in regards to the pleasure of Christmas and recommended Pfleger as he returned to ministry. Pfleger is predicted to deal with the congregation throughout Mass at St. Sabina on Sunday (Dec. 11.)
“As I guarantee you of my prayers,” Cupich concluded, “I ask that you just do all you’ll be able to to welcome again Father Pfleger in order that he can as soon as once more take up the ministry that has distinguished St. Sabina within the archdiocese and past.”