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Archdiocesan Priest, Rev. John E. Flavin, Dies

Flavin was a former pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Glenview, Ill.

Chicago, IL (June 2, 2020) – Rev. John E. Flavin, retired priest of the Archdiocese of Chicago and former pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Glenview, Ill., passed away Saturday, May 30, 2020, at the age of 83.

Flavin was born on July 17, 1936, in Chicago. He attended Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago and the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Mundelein, Ill. He completed his theological studies at North American College and Gregorian University in Rome.

Flavin was ordained to the priesthood on Dec. 18, 1960 in Rome with three fellow Illinois seminarians. He celebrated his first solemn Mass in Rome shortly after and celebrated his first Mass in the United States at Little Flower Parish on Wood Street in Chicago.

After ordination, Flavin was assistant pastor at the Our Lady of Grace Parish on Ridgeway Avenue in Chicago and St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Oak Park, Ill. He then served as pastor at St. Sebastian Parish on Dayton Street in Chicago and Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Glenview, Ill.

Flavin also served as a faculty member at Quigley Preparatory Seminary North in Chicago, staff member at both Liturgy Training Publications and Maryhaven Nursing & Rehabilitation Center, and director of the Archdiocesan Office of Goal Setting. Additionally, Flavin served as president of the Presbyteral Senate and dean of Deaneries 3, 4, and 5 in Vicariate II as well as the cardinal's representative on the Pastoral Guidelines for Marriage Preparation. He retired from active ministry in 2007, where he then served as pastor emeritus at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish. He resided at St. Benedict Nursing and Rehabilitation Center since 2009.

Known among his peers as highly intelligent, Flavin was nonetheless active in parish ministries. At his first parish, St. Sebastian Parish, Flavin supported the parish’s Dignity Mass, bi-lingual Masses, and AIDS hospice. At Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish, Flavin led various ministries to support families most in need.

Fr. Jeremiah Boland, current pastor of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, acknowledged that Flavin was “always present to families facing illness and death.” For instance, he regularly brought Communion to the home-bound and grieved “with families at the funerals of their loved ones.”

Rev. William Kenneally, retired archdiocesan priest and one of Flavin’s classmates, remembers Flavin as a pastor deeply loved by his parishioners because he deeply cared for them. “His life was filled with joy.”

Cognizant of social distancing guidelines, a private funeral Mass celebrated by Bishop Mark Bartosic will take place on Wednesday, June 3 at 10:00 a.m. at Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Glenview, Ill. The Mass will be livestreamed to the public on the parish website.

Interment will occur at Holy Sepulchre Cemetery in Alsip, Ill..