Saint Sabina celebrates 100th anniversary by giving back

Written by Chinta Strausberg

From Storefront to the World is the theme for Saint Sabina’s 100th anniversary year, which was exemplified during St. Sabina’s Day of Service event on July 9, 2016. The event kicked off with a performance by the children’s choir, followed by a flash mob choreographed by Endure Dance group. After Father Michael L. Pfleger and the community leaders in attendance said a few words, volunteers release 100 balloons in honor of the historic occasion, and then they went off to their sites.

View the full Day of Service photo gallery

Pfleger, who was ordained a priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago on May 14, 1975, was appointed pastor of Saint Sabina at the age of 31 in 1981. He was told the church would be shut down in a few months, but Pfleger vowed that closing Saint Sabina would never happen. Over three decades later, St. Sabina remains a vibrant church on the southside of Chicago, committed to outreach and service.

Leading by example, Father Pfleger made a number of stops including Saint Sabina Academy, where volunteers were busy making 500 sandwiches for the homeless for the #lunchbag project. He went to a vacant lot at 7701 S. Morgan greeting volunteers busy at work. He visited the Ronald McDonald House in Hyde Park, and then made a final stop at “Working Bikes” at 2423 S. Western where used bikes are repaired and donated to those in need.

During the Day of Service event, people were lined up outside of the parking lot waiting to get bags of fresh food and vegetables, while hundreds of volunteers fanned across the city to 46 sites performing acts of service on behalf of Saint Sabina Church. Some of the volunteers opted to work with seniors, others cleaned up yards including the playground at Saint Sabina, visited the sick in the hospital, worked on a food pantry project, picked up donations and fed the homeless. Upon their return to St. Sabina, volunteers were greeted with a barbecue meal, and by our sponsors Naked Juice and Cricket Wireless in Chatham.

The Day of Service event allowed Saint Sabina members to put into action what the leaders of the church have taught them over the last century; that church is not limited to the four walls of the sanctuary, but the community is our congregation. Even following this successful event, the 100th anniversary celebration is far from over.

On Sunday, October 2, 2016, Saint Sabina will host a 100th anniversary worship service at 10 a.m. followed by an open house of the entire church campus, and on Saturday, October 29th, the church will hold a gala dinner at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, 151 E. Wacker, where award-winning Yolanda Adams will perform.

For more information on all of our upcoming 100th Anniversary events, visit www.saintsabina.org/100. Check out more exciting photos from the Day of Service, by searching on Facebook under #stsabinados.