Fr. Leo T. Phillips, CSV, died August 30, 1958 at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, IL after a painful ailment of at least five months. He was 62.
Before his fatal illness, however, Fr. Phillips had been sick for many years. He had been sick throughout his entire priesthood, and for several years before his death he was unable to say Mass.
Fr. Phillips was born May 22, 1896 in Pana, IL. He entered the Viatorian Novitiate in 1913 and professed his first vows Jan. 3, 1915 and his perpetual vows Jan. 4, 1920.
He was ordained to the priesthood on May 26, 1923, five years after receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree at St. Viator College in Bourbonnais, IL.
He served as a teacher and principal at St. Viator Academy until he was appointed to study Latin and Greek at Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. He persevered, even when ill, until he earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in 1937.
Fr. Phillips’ last years, since 1950, were devoted to the scholastics who attended Loyola University from St. Bernard Hall in Chicago. His illness prevented him from participating in many forms of activity and consequently, he was in a position to give individual attention to each young man, to reveal his marvelous mind, to inspire and create enthusiasm. And they loved him for it.
Funeral services were held on Sept. 2 at St. Viator Church in Chicago. The Rev. John F. Brown, CSV, provincial of the Viatorians, officiated at the Mass, which was sung by the seminarians. Fr. Phillips was laid to rest in the Viatorian Community plot at Queen of Heaven Cemetery in Hillside, IL.
Taken from an obituary in the 1958 Annuaire – a publication of the Viatorian General Direction