Fatigued by the national media attention he received as Sen. Barack Obama's former pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright Jr. has withdrawn from two appearances scheduled here for next week.
Wright, who grew up in Philadelphia and preaches here often, was scheduled to lead a revival at St. Thomas African-Episcopal Church in Overbrook Farms on May 28 and 29, and to preach at Canaan Baptist Church on June 1 as part of that congregation's 100th anniversary celebration.
The Rev. Martini Shaw, rector of St. Thomas, said today that Wright's office had advised him last week that Wright, recently retired as senior pastor of Chicago's Trinity United Church of Christ, had asked to reschedule the revival.
"Dr. Wright has been exhausted by all the media attention and desired some time for refreshment and refueling," according to Shaw, who has known Wright and Obama for years.
Shaw said Wright had preached at St. Thomas the previous two years, and hoped to reschedule the revival in the "next couple of months."
A woman who answered the phone at Canaan confirmed that Wright would not be preaching there next month. Heroic and prophetic to some Americans and viewed as anti-American by others, Wright, 66, became hugely controversial this year when Obama's political opponents posted fragments of his fiery sermons on the Internet.