Welcome to Benedictine University, the number one haunted school in Illinois, according to trueillinoishaunts.com. That’s right, our BenU is home to some of the oldest, creepiest ghosts and spirits that have ever floated through the lands. But did you seriously expect anything less? Our school even comes fully equipped with its own cemetery—it was asking to be haunted!
First off, they usually tend to haunt a specific area that they are drawn to. So this could be a place where they died, the house they grew up in, or a place where their loved ones reside. You can literally “feel” where they are—these areas are known as “cold spots” and, as the name suggests, they tend to be significantly cooler than other areas. The reason is unknown, but many believe that the paranormal presence that is haunting the area actually absorbs energy in the form of heat, leaving the temperature a few degrees lower than it normally should be.
If you aren’t scared yet, there’s one more thing you should know about ghosts. They aren’t all good and harmless!
Keep in mind that it is said that ghosts sometimes stay with people as they move to new surroundings. So for those of you who graduated from Benet Academy and then came to BenU, I would take a closer look behind you as you look into a mirror. Do you think you just caught a glimpse of something? You might want to look again.
Benet Academy, located across the street from BenU hosts a long history of haunted sightings. Benet Academy used to be St. Joseph’s Orphanage before being converted into a school. Many teachers who have taught at this academy have claimed to see ghosts of children and even nuns lingering around the halls. There have been several sightings of a nun on the fourth floor who just “watches over” the establishment. This very floor was also used to house a theater and many have heard the statues moving around.
As rumor has it, there is a little boy in a blue t-shirt and shorts who runs along the pathways that stretch the campus. Mind you, he is dressed in this attire during every season the year: be it rain or shine. If this isn’t scary enough, one evening a group of students were using an Ouija board to contact some spirits for fun. They left the board on one of the couches to go eat dinner, but when they came back the dormitory was set in flames. The fire fighters on the scene stated that the couch in the dormitory was the main origin of the fire!
Benedictine Hall used to be located in the quad of Kindlon. Many janitors who have gone up to clean the 4th floor of this building claim to have seen the ghost of a priest and a monk. Our very own, Father Michael used to communicate to the ghost of the priest. Many professors and even students have also heard the noise of a piano or organ playing in rooms of this hall. However, when they go to check for the origin of the sound, there would never be anyone there! There also used to be a “barber chair” on the fourth floor that was previously used by the monks. Many people have seen the chair spinning: sometimes alone and sometimes with someone sitting in it.
Ondrak Hall is reported to have many “technical difficulties” throughout the years. Typical? Not quite! Many students have had their lights randomly turn on and off. Also, there have been many statements made about the volumes of the televisions and stereos turning up and down. One room had so many complaints about creepy noises and cold chills passing through it that it is now closed off and no one lives in it. If this isn’t scary enough, many girls have had instances of their hair getting pull while in the shower. Now that’s what I call spine-chilling!! (Side note: Ondrak used to be the girls dormitory.)
This dormitory is most associated with sightings of orphans from St. Joseph’s Orphanage. One time, a student living in Neuzil Hall took a picture in the hallway. When the student had the photo developed, they could clearly see the faces of a little boy and girl standing at the end of the hallway. Neuzil is also known for the playing pianos—these instruments don’t need humans to play them!
The basement of Jaeger Hall is known to be a sight of several ghostly occurrences. There are stories of children seen running around in the hallways and young men haunting the rooms of this dormitory. There have also been frightening instances of stereos turning on and playing music in the middle of the night! How is that for paranormal?
Benedictine University Cemetery
One night back in 1990, three boys decided to take an Ouija board with them to the cemetery so they could try and communicate with the spirits. One of the boys started to act very strangely! He began shaking and even shouting in several different languages! The other two boys were terrified at this point and did not know how to control their friend, so they called public safety. However, not even the campus police could control the boy. The public safety turned for help from the monks at the Abbey who confirmed that the boy was possessed. The monks took the boy to the fifth floor of Benedictine Hall and performed an exorcism. The boy later escaped the fifth floor and went missing for three or four days. He returned to campus after his disappearance as if nothing had ever happened.