‘You be the Critic’ presents “The Father Clements Story”

'You be the Critic' presents the film "The Father Clements Story" for view and review with radio announcer Dan Kane at the Oak Park Arms retirement community. Oak Park Arms presents its popular series “You Be the Critic” at 3:30 p.m. Friday, June 14, at the Oak Park Arms, 408 S. Oak Park Ave. The 1987 film “The Father Clements Story” will be viewed and reviewed with radio announcer Dan Kane.

This television-movie produced by NBC was directed by Edwin Sherin and starred Lou Gossett, Jr., Malcolm-Jamal Warner and Carroll O’Connor.

Father George Clements (Gossett, Jr.), an African American Roman Catholic priest in Chicago, realized that if one family from each African American church in the city (more than 700 churches) adopted one troubled African American child in need of a permanent home (approximately 500 children), a serious problem would be eliminated in the community.

When no one responded to his One Church One Child concept, Fr. Clements led by example and became the first priest in history to legally adopt a child.

The provocative, Emmy-nominated television-movie is based on the true story of Father George Clements. It follows the first of four adoptions by Fr. Clements. His decision to fight for the right to save the troubled teen from a life on the streets created a lot of controversy in Holy Angels Church in Chicago, his home parish, and made front-page news in the Chicago Sun-Times.

The groundbreaking decision by the Vatican in 1981 resulted in clergy from numerous faiths delivering Fr. Clements’ adoption message. As a result of his efforts, the number of children needing permanent homes in Chicago dropped from 1,000 children in 1980 to 150 children by 1987.

The Oak Park Arms is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Furnished apartments are also available for a short-term stay – a weekend, a week, a month or longer.

The event is free and open to the public. Call Jill Wagner at 708-386-4040.


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