Police removed a man dressed as Jesus from the Cathedral Basilica of Saints Peter and Paul in Philadelphia yesterday during Archbishop Nelson Perez’s Installation Mass.
Dressed in a white robe and considered the “Philly Jesus,” authorities requested Michael Dennis Grant leave the basilica, but he refused. Police then handcuffed Grant and gave him a citation for trespassing at a private event.
“They took me, they dragged my feet,” Grant claimed. He added that they “took my ankles and dragged my hands like military-style like I was a terrorist. I was so embarrassed. All I did was sit in front of the Holy Sacrament.”
Grant also told officers yesterday that he is “a universal priest” and every person has “authority as a priest or a Pope.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer posted this video of Grant’s encounter with police:
— The Philadelphia Inquirer (@PhillyInquirer) February 18, 2020
This is not the first time police escorted Grant from a public place. Police arrested the former drug addict at an Apple store in 2016 for “making a scene and refusing to leave.”
Grant has been in and out of psychiatric hospitals and drug rehab facilities over the years.
He is local celebrity in Philadelphia, known for dressing as Jesus. In an interview with the Philadelphia Weekly, Grant said he overcame his drug addiction through Christ.
“I’d still be on drugs if I had never accepted Jesus,” he said.
Grant is a fallen away Catholic and plans to begin a non-denominational Christian religion.