Right Reverend John Eidenschink, OSB, JCD was born in Detroit Lakes, MN on August 9, 1914. Brother John entered Saint John’s Abbey and professed the monastic vows of conversatio morum on July 11, 1935 in Beuron inspired Abbey Church that most in Collegeville MN know now as the Great Hall.
Brother John became Father John Eidenschink when he was ordained to the Roman Catholic priesthood on June 8, 1941. After Ordination, Father Eidenschink served as teacher, doctoral student at Caldwell Hall, pastor, novice master, cleric master, sub prior, prior, canon lawyer, professor, seminary rector, abbot, Chancellor of Saint John’s University, Abbot President of the American Cassinese Congregation of Benedictine monasteries, and nursing home chaplain.
Father Eidenschink received a doctorate in canon law after studying church law at Catholic University of America where he was awarded the J.C.D.
Father Eidenschink then became Abbot and Chancellor John Albert Eidenschink in 1971. As head of the monastic community and Chancellor of Saint John’s University from 1971-1979, Abbot Eidenschink was the spiritual and administrative leader of Saint John’s Preparatory School, Saint John’s University, Saint John’s School of Theology, the Hill Monastic Manuscript Library, the Ecumenical Institute, the Liturgical Press, Saint Augustine’s Priory Nassau Bahamas, Saint Anselm’s Priory Tokyo Japan and the Order of Saint Benedict Incorporated.
Abbot Eidenschink admitted to sexually abusing at least two members of the Saint John’s Community prior to and during his Abbatial reign. In 2002, Abbot John Eidenschink was placed on restriction and placed in the Abbey retirement home on Saint John’s campus.