Cardinal removes priest who burned LGBT flag at Avondale church

CHICAGO — A Northwest Side priest has been removed about a week after he burned a rainbow flag outside his church.

Protesters had been demanding Cardnial Blase Cupich take action against the Rev. Paul Kalchik after he ignored the cardinal's warning and burned a rainbow flag with a cross on it on Sept. 14. Kalchik had been at Resurrection Church since 2007. Before he took over at Resurrection, the flag hung inside the church.

The priest told the Chicago Sun-Times he burned the flag because he did not "sit well" with Cupich who he said is trying to minimize the Catholic Church's sex abuse scandal. Kalchick said he was sexually abused as a child and again at 19 by a priest, the Sun-Times said.

Cupich removed Kalchik from the church on Saturday and announced it in a letter to the parish. The letter was brief but said the cardnial was concerned about a number issues and, "it had become clear to me that Father Kalchik must take time away from the parish to receive pastoral support."

Some members of Resurrection Church said their prayers had been answered.