Retired priest investigated for child sexual abuse allegation at Hickory Hills church

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A retired priest has been removed from ministry pending an investigation into an allegation of child sexual abuse, according to the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Cardinal Blase Cupich, archbishop of Chicago, asked the Rev. William Killeen to “step aside” after learning of the allegation last week, according to a Saturday evening news release. The abuse allegedly happened about 40 years ago at St. Patricia Parish in Hickory Hills. Killeen denies the allegation, according to the statement.

Killeen declined to comment on the investigation when reached by phone Sunday afternoon.

The archdiocese said it notified civil authorities, and that the person who made the allegation was offered services of the archdiocese’s victim assistance ministry.

Retired since 2019, the archdiocese said Killeen occasionally celebrates Mass at St. Francis Xavier Parish and St. Cletus Parish, both in La Grange, and St. John of the Cross Parish in Western Springs.

Cupich notified eight parishes that Killeen was removed:

  • St. Alexander in Palos Heights

  • St. Patricia in Hickory Hills

  • St. Michael in Orland Park

  • St. Christopher (now St. Augustine) in Midlothian

  • Infant Jesus of Prague (now St. Veronica) in Flossmoor

  • St. Francis Xavier in La Grange

  • St. Cletus in La Grange

  • St. John of the Cross in Western Springs