Rev. David P. Dowdle, 65, senior priest and former pastor at St. John of the Cross Parish in Western Springs, died on April 18, 2019. Born on Nov. 22, 1953, in Chicago, he attended St. Bernardine School in Forest Park and Quigley Preparatory Seminary in Chicago. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Niles College Seminary of Loyola University and a Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the University of St. Mary of the Lake/Mundelein Seminary in Mundelein in 1977.
Ordained to the priesthood on May 9, 1979, by John Cardinal Cody, archbishop of Chicago, he celebrated his first solemn Mass at St. Bernardine Catholic Church in Forest Park on May 19 of the same year. Following his ordination, he served as associate pastor at St. Marcelline Parish in Schaumburg, St. Mary of Celle Parish in Berwyn, and Our Lady of Perpetual Help Parish in Glenview. He was appointed pastor of St. Gall Parish on 55th Street in Chicago in 1992 and served in that role until 2000, when he became director of spiritual formation for the Institute for Diaconal Studies (then called the Deacon Formation Program). In that role, he oversaw the spiritual formation component of the training and supervised the spiritual directors who accompanied the men and their wives during formation. Deacon Bob Puhala, director of the Institute for Diaconal Studies who worked with Dowdle from 2005 until 2007, remembers him as a “direct communicator and fearless in his dedication to diaconate formation.” Very Rev. Gregory Sakowicz, rector of Holy Name Cathedral, met Dowdle at Niles College Seminary of Loyola in 1971. Sakowicz remembers his classmate as “very friendly, with a wonderful sense of humor, always willing to help others. He was loved by the people wherever he served.”
Visitation was on April 26 and on April 27, followed by a funeral Mass at St. John of the Cross Parish.