Willard F Jabusch

Willard Francis (known as Bill) Jabusch was born in March 1930 in Chicago, Illinois in the USA

His interest in the priesthood was sparked in this early teenage years by watching a priest minister to his grandmother. He went on to be ordained a Roman Catholic priest for the the Archdiocese of Chicago in 1956. His first assignment was to an inner-city, and then to a number of teaching roles. (ref)

He completed a master’s degree in English at Loyola University, Chicago, and a doctorate in performance studies from Northwestern University. He also studied composition at the Chicago Conservatory. He taught at several seminaries and at Notre Dame University. Later he was the Roman Catholic Chaplain at the University of Chicago, and also director of spiritual formation at the American College, University of Louvain, in Belgium.

Jabusch composed singable, folk-style hymns in the style which became associated with the 1960s. they often featured Scripture paraphrases, and used folk tunes, especially from eastern European and Israel which he learned in multi-ethnic parishes in the Chicago area or while travelling (ref). His works became prominent in the years after the 2nd Vatican Council, His best-known hymns are The King of Glory and Whatsoever You Do but he continued composing throughout his career, releasing several CDs in the early 21st century.

He also wrote articles for magazines including America, Commonweal, and the London Tablet. and books including City on the Tiber, Walk Where Jesus Walked, The Person in the Pulpit and The Spoken Christ. and plays including Francesco, Vincent and the Kingdom and No Other Gods.

He died in December 2018, at 88 years of age (ref).

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