IL-COOK-SCHAUMBURG-L ArchivesArchiver > IL-COOK-SCHAUMBURG > 2007-09 > 1190591113
From: "Jane Rozek" <>
Subject: [IL-COOK-SCHAUMBURG] fr. bill shields obit and story
Date: Sun, 23 Sep 2007 18:45:13 -0500
Rev. William J. Shields A Mass of Christian Burial for the Rev. William J. Shields, 81, will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, at Santa Maria del Popolo Church (Big Church), 116 N. Lake St., Mundelein. Interment will follow in Queen of Heaven Cemetery, Hillside. Visitation will be from 3 to 9 p.m. today and from 9 a.m. until the time of Mass on Friday, at the church. Fr. Bill was ordained May 1, 1952. He resided at St. Gall Parish, Holy Name Cathedral, St. Celestine Parish, Ford City Catholic Center, St. Hubert Parish and Santa Maria del Popolo Parish in Mundelein. He spent much of his time working with the Spanish community at Santa Maria. At the age of 65 he traveled and lived in Costa Rica to learn and speak Spanish. He is survived by his sister, Mary (Bob) Williams; his brothers-in-law, Gerard (Rita) Kwasegroch and John Booe; and 22 nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Patrick and Anna Shields; his sisters, Anna (Maurice) Kelly, Helen Kwasegroch and Rita!
Booe; and his brother, Rev. James Shields. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to Santa Maria del Popolo School Fund, 116 N. Lake St., Mundelein, IL 60060. Arrangements were made by Kristan Funeral Home P.C., Mundelein. For information visit www.kristanfuneralhome.com <http://www.kristanfuneralhome.com/> or call 847-566-8020.
Published in the Chicago Suburban Daily Herald from 9/12/2007 - 9/13/2007.
The Rev. Bill Shields is being remembered by friends and colleagues as a man of conviction, a priest deeply devoted to his flock -- and the occasional absent-mindedness.
Rev. Shields, friends report, would occasionally call home to St. Hubert Parish in Hoffman Estates from the Harper College parking lot.
"He'd call saying he couldn't find his car," recalls Jack Clair, who was an associate pastor at St. Hubert.
Rev. Shields taught psychology at Harper College and was pastor at St. Hubert from 1976 to 1991.
And while he might have occasionally had a spotty memory, his friends and family say they won't forget his commitment to the church and his generosity.
Rev. Shields, a veteran priest who served at several Chicago-area parishes, including as associate pastor at Santa Maria del Popolo Parish in Mundelein, died Sunday at Resurrection Life Center in Chicago of leukemia. He was 82.
The Rev. David Arcilla of Santa Maria remembers Rev. Shields for his commitment to helping others. He learned to speak Spanish at age 65, which came in handy when he joined Santa Maria and its large Hispanic membership in 1992. They knew each other for 10 years.
"The Hispanic community here realized he was very open-minded," Arcilla said. "He saw the need to serve the community."
Rev. Shields helped parishioners get jobs and he helped them navigate the immigration system, among other things.
Bill Kelley met Rev. Shields when he was a brash 25-year-old at St. Hubert. The priest presided over Kelley's wedding and baptized his children.
"He's the perfect example of a shepherd of his flock," Kelley said.
Rev. Shield's leadership was the kind where he stayed in the background and put trust in others. His trust in Clair's ideas helped establish the St. Hubert teen theater program.
"He was just a loving, well-loved, compassionate pastor," said St. Hubert deacon Thomas Hayden.
A Chicago native, Rev. Shields was a priest for 43 years. He was ordained the same day as his younger brother, James, who died in June, also of leukemia.
The brothers went to seminary together, worked together at both St. Hubert and Santa Maria, and lived together in retirement at Santa Maria.
"That's when Bill gave up finally," Clair said. "He just gave up when Jim died."
Earlier in his career, Rev. Shields was assigned to other Chicago area parishes, including Holy Name Cathedral in Chicago and an experimental parish at the Ford City Shopping Center on the city's Southwest Side.
His talent for counting cards made him a worthy adversary playing bridge and poker. He was also an avid golfer.
Visitation is scheduled 3 to 9 p.m. today at Santa Maria del Popolo Church, 116 N. Lake St., Mundelein.
Visitation will conclude from 9 to 11 a.m. Friday. The funeral Mass will be said at 11 a.m. Friday at the church.
He will be buried in Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside, where his brother was buried this summer.
Rev. Shields' survivors include a sister.
Instead of flowers, donations can be sent to the Santa Maria del Popolo School Fund, 116 N. Lake St., Mundelein, IL, 60060.
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