Saturday, March 29, 2008

Obama's Church Builds Million Dollar Home For Rev. Wright

As a token of its appreciation to the recently-retired Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the church of Sen. Barack Obama is building him a million-dollar retirement home. The Sun-Times reports on the lavish home Trinity United Church of Christ is providing to Wright:

Trinity United Church of Christ is building Barack Obama's controversial former pastor a million-dollar Tinley Park home complete with an elevator, whirlpool, butler's pantry, circular driveway and four-car garage, building plans show.

The four-bedroom home being built for the Rev. Jeremiah Wright is in the Odyssey Club neighborhood, which boasts some of Tinley Park's largest homes and a mix of town homes. It backs up to the Odyssey Country Club and golf course.

The mansion under construction is estimated to cost $1 million, a building permit shows. It will also feature a large family room with a fireplace and bar, a rubberized exercise room and a spare room for a future theater or swimming pool, building plans show.

Trinity United Church of Christ, 400 W. 95th Street, Chicago, is listed as the landowner on the permit.

A spokesman for the church tells the Sun-Times it is "customary and appropriate" to provide housing for retired clergy.

Meanwhile, Obama is now saying he kept attending the church despite the controversial sermons of Rev. Wright because he says Wright repented for his sins. ''Had the reverend not retired and had he not acknowledged that what he had said had deeply offended people and were inappropriate and mischaracterized what I believe is the greatness of this country, for all its flaws, then I wouldn't have felt comfortable staying there at the church,'' Obama said. Is there a connection between Wright's retirement, repentance and the million-dollar home? It doesn't appear so. The Tribune reports today that Wright bought the lot on which the home sits himself for $345,000 and then turned around and sold it to the church in 2006, which proceeded to apply for the building permits and take out a $1.6 million mortgage on it. If the home cost a million according to the plans and the mortgage is for $1.6 million, is it possible Rev. Wright doubled the money he paid for the lot when he sold it to the church?

And then there's a little item in the Sun-Times on Obama embellishing his resume. No, he never held the title of law professor at the University of Chicago, although the university says he "served as a law professor." The respected law school permitted Obama to begin teaching at the school after his first year out of Harvard's law school. It's odd that the school would cling to the claim that he served as a law professor while acknowledging he had earned no such title.


Anonymous said...

And this is important news to you why?

Gary R. Welsh said...

Because it's my blog, and I get to decide what's newsworthy here.

Unknown said...

I definitely think it's newsworthy. There is something wrong when ministers who preach about the poor, disadvantaged and minoritions turning around and getting million dollar mansions built for them using money given to them by church-goers.

Anonymous said...

Then why not attack the problem at home, Flynn? Why pitch a fit about some church out of state doing it? Better yet, why not speak up against the Carmel church that shunned the family of a little girl who was molested by an elder, who happened to be a relative (grandpa, I believe)?

The Carmel situation is far more newsworthy because someone was actually harmed, but sadly more people are going to be aware of some financial shadiness in a Chicago church that ultimately isn't going to ruin someone's life.

Chris Worden said...

I fail to see the church shadiness.
Most church operate like a republican democracy. They have board members selected by the congregants, and the vote on how they spend their money. If this congregation wants their pastor to have a million-dollar home after his retirement, is it any different than Americans giving $183,000 per year pensions to former presidents, in addition to staffs, mailing privileges, travel privileges, and 10 years of secret service protection? Even the least popular presidents in America (are you listening George Bush?) will get at least $50,000 a speech, and we're providing them with retirement when people can't pay their mortgages? Of course, we are. And there's nothing "shady" about it. Just because I disagree doesn't mean the expenditure is inappropriate when it's been disclosed to me. See how many people leave the church in response to this story. Answer will be: zero.

Chris Worden said...

Also...if a guy teaches students in a college, I call him a professor, regardless of whether he's full-time tenured faculty, part-time adjunct faculty, professor emeritus, a lecturer, or whatever. The point is that he took his time and spent it educating, and anybody who thinks this is an "embellishment" is off the boat.

Unknown said...

Randymtx, I wasn't aware that the Carmel church was the home church of one of the leading candidates for President. (Sarcasm.) If you can't figure out the difference in newsworthiness between O'Bama's close friend and minister and the situation in Carmel, there's not much hope for you.

Unknown said...


It would be like Mother Theresa living in a mansion then spending her life reaching out to the poor and disadvantaged. It's nothing more than pure hypocrisy.

Gary R. Welsh said...

The point of Lynn Sweet's post was that she had reported when Obama ran for the Senate that he was inflating his title. She said he was a Senior Lecturer, but he didn't think that sounded impressive enough so he changed it to law school professor. Obama didn't complain about her report then, but he is now complaining about Clinton campaign claims that he's misrepresenting his title. It might not matter to you ipopa, but it generally matters to people who've earned the academic title. He wasn't even an associate professor.

Gary R. Welsh said...

And on the church, because it is a federally tax-exempt entity, we are all subsidizing its operations.

Wilson46201 said...

From a totally unimpeachable news source
comes a defense of Obama from the attacks from the Clinton Campaign and Gary Welsh...

Anonymous said...

Hmmm....Do I detect a new argument for the separation of church and state. Perhaps then the church issues can truly stay out of politics the way it should be. I guess this is why I still fail to see the importance of the reporting.

Gary R. Welsh said...

The University of Chicago is merely providing cover for Obama, Wilson. Lynn Sweet makes that point clear. She's been covering Obama for the Sun-Times since the beginning of his career. I put more stock in what she says than that pandering press release from UC.

Indy4U2C said...

EVIL: 1. morally wrong or bad; immoral; wicked: evil deeds; an evil life.
2. harmful; injurious: evil laws.
3. characterized or accompanied by misfortune or suffering; unfortunate; disastrous: to be fallen on evil days.
4. due to actual or imputed bad conduct or character: an evil reputation.
5. marked by anger, irritability, irascibility, etc.: He is known for his evil disposition.
–noun 6. that which is evil; evil quality, intention, or conduct: to choose the lesser of two evils.
7. the force in nature that governs and gives rise to wickedness and sin.
8. the wicked or immoral part of someone or something: The evil in his nature has destroyed the good.
9. harm; mischief; misfortune: to wish one evil.
10. anything causing injury or harm: Tobacco is considered by some to be an evil.
11. a harmful aspect, effect, or consequence: the evils of alcohol.
12. a disease, as king's evil.
–adverb 13. in an evil manner; badly; ill: It went evil with him.
—Idiom14. the evil one, the devil; in Anti-Christ.

Anyone who promotes racial hatred is no man of God!

Is O'Bama Anti-Christ?

jon porter said...

I'm a lecturer (should be senior, and will be applying for the title (no raise) this summer). I am not a professor, and students who address me as such are corrected. I am, however, a Dr.

-- The guy who used to teach at Concordia.

jewbacca said...

it's called prophets for profit. Same as that light of the world church with T. Bishop Benjimen Garret.