News and Events


Statement of the Archdiocese of Chicago on Father John P. Smyth January 18, 2019

January 18, 2019

Cardinal Blase J. Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, has asked Father John P. Smyth, a retired priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago, to step aside from ministry following receipt by the Archdiocesan Office for Child Abuse Investigations and Review of allegations of sexual abuse of minors. These allegations pertain to the 2002-2003 time period while Fr. Smyth was assigned to Maryville Academy in Des Plaines. In keeping with our child protection policies, the allegations were reported to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and the Cook County State’s Attorney. The persons making the allegations have been offered the services of the archdiocese’s Office of Assistance Ministry.

The archdiocese has begun its review of these matters. Fr. Smyth will reside away from the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe grounds while the allegations are investigated. His faculties to minister in the Archdiocese of Chicago have been withdrawn.

Fr. Smyth has served the archdiocese in various roles, including:

  • Maryville Academy (Des Plaines), assistant superintendent, July 7,1962 to September 7, 1970
  • Maryville Academy (Des Plaines), superintendent, September 8, 1970 to December 1, 2003
  • Notre Dame College Prep (Niles), president, July 1, 2007 to April 3, 2014.

The Archdiocese of Chicago takes all allegations of sexual misconduct seriously and encourages anyone who feels he or she has been sexually abused by a priest, deacon, religious or lay employee to come forward. Complete information about reporting sexual abuse can be found on the Archdiocesan website at