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Former Pastor at St. Alphonsus, Lemont and Ascension, Oak Park

Chicago, IL (July 17, 2009) – Fr. Francis C. Jenks, a resident priest at Mary, Seat of Wisdom Parish in Park Ridge, died yesterday from heart failure, at Lutheran General Hospital. He was 64 years old.

A Chicago native of Irish and Lithuanian decent, Fr. Jenks graduated from Visitation Catholic School and Quigley Preparatory Seminary South High School in Chicago. He graduated from Niles College Seminary at Loyola University Chicago and University of St. Mary of the Lake / Mundelein Seminary in 1970 and was ordained that year by then Archbishop John Cardinal Cody.

Fr. Jenks began his parish ministry as the assistant pastor of Our Lady of the Wayside in Arlington Heights from 1970 to 1975, Our Lady of Perpetual Help in Glenview until 1981, and St. Mary of Vernon in Vernon Hills until 1988.

For 14 years beginning in 1988, Fr. Jenks served as pastor of Ascension Parish in Oak Park. He was named pastor of St. Alphonsus Parish in Lemont in 2002 where he served until 2008.

Fr. Jenks was greatly involved for many years with Theology-on-Tap, the speaker and conversation series for those in their 20’s and 30’s, sponsored by the Young Adult Ministry Office of the Archdiocese of Chicago.

Visitation for Fr. Jenks will take place from 2 to 9 p.m. on Monday, July 20, at Ascension Church, 801 South East Avenue in Oak Park. Francis Cardinal George, O.M.I., Archbishop of Chicago, will be the main celebrant at a funeral Mass for Fr. Jenks at 11 a.m. on Tuesday, July 21, at Ascension. Interment will be at Holy Sepulchre Catholic Cemetery in Alsip.

Fr. Jenks is survived by a brother, Edward (Mary Louise), and a sister, Mary Kay (Frank) Sotello.

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