Assignment Record Rev. Carroll Howlin (aka "Pud")

Summary of Case: Carroll Howlin was a priest of the Joliet diocese, ordained in 1961. He assisted at parishes in several Illinois towns and he was a teacher and spiritual director at St. Charles Borremeo Seminary High School and College in Lockport. In May 1977 Howlin requested and was granted permission to serve as a mission priest in Kentucky. From then on he was administrator at Good Shepherd parish in Whitley City. Although he worked in Kentucky, he remained a Joliet priest. In 1993 Howlin was accused of sexually abusing a St. Charles student in the 1970s; he was sent for a psychological evaluation and was allowed to stay in ministry. In April 2002 Howlin was removed from ministry after another former St. Charles student accused him of sexual abuse in the 1970s. That accusation was followed by another from a man who said Howlin sexually abused him in the 1970s when he was a boy, during a camping trip. In 2003 Howlin was again accused, this time of having sexually abused two Kentucky boys, who were brothers, in the 1990s. One of the boys committed suicide at age 17. Howlin has been the subject of a number of lawsuits. After his removal he went on to live for many years in a guesthouse of a four-acre compound belonging to "Hills and Hollers Ministries." He was apparently unmonitored and continued to receive a pension from the Joliet diocese. He died in May 2015.

Born: April 6, 1934
Ordained: 1961
Died: May 5, 2015



Start Stop Assignment Town/Accusations State Position Notes


Joliet bishop was Martin Dewey McNamara (1948-1966).

1965 SS. Peter and Paul


IL 3/3, 2/4

SS. Peter and Paul had a school with 1,153-965 students. It had a mission school, St. Raphael, with 196 students.

June 1965

McNamara was succeeded by Romeo Roy Blanchette (1966-1979).

June 1967 Holy Trinity Westmont IL 2/3 Holy Trinity had a school with 499-483 students.
June 1967 1975 St. Charles Borromeo Seminary High School and College


Howlin was accused in 1993 of sexual abuse of a former St. Charles student.

Howlin was accused in April 2002 of having sexually abused a St. Charles student between 1975 and 1976, beginning when the student was 15 years old. The abuse is said to have occurred during a mission trip to KY, and in IL.

Another man claimed in April 2002 that Howlin sexually abused him as a boy during a camping trip in Wisconsin in the 1970s.

IL teacher; spiritual director

St. Charles had 210-90 students.


July 1974 1977 Diocesan Consultor Joliet IL    
June 1975 Jan. 1976 St. Pius X Lombard IL associate pastor Per Howlin's personnel file.
Jan. 1976 May 1977 St. Paul the Apostle Joliet IL 3/4 St. Paul's had a school with 366 students.

May 1977

Louisville archbishop was Thomas Joseph McDonough (1967-1981), followed by Thomas Cajetan Kelly, O.P. (1981-2007).

The Lexington diocese was formed in 1988. Its bishop was James Kendrick Williams (1988-2002). Ronald William Gainer succeeded Williams (2002-2014), followed by John Eric Stowe, O.F.M. Conv. (2015-).

Joliet bishop succeeding Blanchette was Joseph Leopold Imesch (1979-2006).


2002 On Duty Outside the Diocese: Good Shepherd Chapel

Whitley City

Howlin was accused in 2003 of having sexually abused two brothers in Whitley in the 1990s. The boys were from an impoverished family. Howlin is said to have paid special attention to them, giving them money and basic necessities, such as clothing and a refrigerator for the family; the boys were expected to provide the priest sexual favors in return. One of the boys committed suicide in 1998, when he was 17 years old.

KY 1/1 Administrator

The Directories do not indicate Howlin's whereabouts until 1983. He sought and received permission in 1977 from Louisville archbishop Thomas J. McDonough to work in KY "home missions."

Howlin underwent a psychological evaluation in 1993 after an allegation surfaced that he had sexually abused a St. Charles seminary student in IL years previously; a Joliet Diocesan Review Committee decided Howlin could stay in ministry.

Howlin is not indexed beyond the 2002 Directory. He was removed from ministry in April 2002 after he was accused of sexually abusing a 15-year-old boy in the 1970s.


Imesch was succeeded as Joliet bishop by James Peter Sartain (2006-2010), followed by Robert Daniel Conlon

2015 Hills and Hollers Ministries Whitley City KY Lived at a guesthouse on this 4-acred compound; served as consultant for mission volunteers.

Per news reports, Howlin was allowed to stay in rural KY after his removal from ministry, unmonitored and receiving a pension from the Joliet diocese.

Howlin died in Kentucky May 5, 2015.


Sources: Official Catholic Directory (New York: P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1962-2002)

Joliet Diocese Suspends Priest, Allegations Date to '75 Romeoville Seminary Post, By David Heinzmann
Chicago Tribune, April 17, 2002
Lawyer Is Representing 1970s Seminary Student, By Art Jester And Lee Mueller, Lexington Herald Leader, April 17, 2002
Worst Kept Secrets. Sexual Abuse Cases: Plenty of Public Information on 15 Joliet Diocese Priests, By Ted Slowik, Herald News, May 5, 2002
Kentucky Priest Will Be Accused, California Man's Suit to Name Whitley City Cleric, By Art Jester, Lexington Herald Leader, August 16, 2002
Lawsuit Names Diocese, Priest, By David Heinzmann, Chicago Tribune, August 20, 2002
Joliet Diocese Names 22 Accused Priests, Sex Abuse Scandal: Critics Question the List's Completeness, By Ted Slowik,
The Herald News, April 11, 2006
Diocese Releases Records on West Suburban Priests Accused of Abuse, Adds Names to List of the Accused, By Brian Hudson, My Suburban Life, March 12, 2013
Banned Priest Not Monitored, By David Heinzmann, Chicago Tribune, April 26, 2013
SNAP Wants Tighter Control of Abusive Priests, Chicago Sun-Times, April 30, 2013
Support Group for Clergy Sex-abuse Victims Asks Lexington Bishop to Investigate Priest, By Josh Kegley, The Herald-Leader, May 18, 2013
Anderson Advocates Timeline, April 30, 2014
Diocese of Joliet List of Priests with Credible Allegations, April 30, 2014
Howlin Personnel Files from David Rudofski Archives, April 30, 2014
More Documents Released Detailing Sex Abuse Allegations in Joliet Diocese, By Shannon Antinori, Patch, April 30, 2014
Carroll Dale Howlin, obituary,, accessed May 25, 2015


Priests in a Parish: We use the following convention to show a priest's place among the clergy of a parish: 1/2 means that he is the first priest listed in the Official Catholic Directory (usually the pastor) and that there is a total of two priests at the parish. The shorthand 3/4 means that the priest is listed third on a four-priest roster. See our sample page from the Directory.

Note: The Official Catholic Directory aims to report the whereabouts of Catholic priests in the United States on January 1 of the Directory's publication year. Our working assumption is that a priest listed in the Directory for a given year was at the same assignment for part of the previous year as well. However, Kenedy and Sons will sometimes accept updates well into the year of publication. Diocesan clergy records are rarely available to correct this information. The Directory is also sometimes misleading or wrong. We have tried to create an accurate assignment record, given the source materials and their limitations. Assignment records are a work in progress and we are always improving the records that we post. Please email us with new information and corrections.

This assignment record collates Howlin's career history as it is represented in the Official Catholic Directory with allegations as reported in the media. We make no representation regarding the truth of the allegation we report, and we remind our readers that the U.S. legal system presumes that a person accused of or charged with a crime is innocent until proven guilty. Similarly, individuals who may be defendants in civil actions are presumed not to be liable for such claims unless a plaintiff proves otherwise. Admissions of guilt or liability are not typically a part of civil or private settlements. For more information, see our posting policy.

This assignment record was last updated on May 25, 2015.