Ordination: Largest class in 40 years ordained priests May 18, 2019
The Archdiocese of Cincinnati joyfully celebrated the largest class of priests being ordained in 40 years. A full cathedral was on hand as the men were ordained to the priesthood for service to God and the Church. Archbishop Dennis M. Schnurr celebrated the Mass. Bishop Joseph R. Binzer concelebrated the Mass.
It has been 40 years since the Archdiocese of Cincinnati has celebrated the ordination of nine or more men to the priesthood. This historic ordination marks a recent high in the number of men ordained in a given year. Over the last decade there have been other large classes, including seven men in 2009 and seven men in 2016.
The men ordained with their assignments are:
Father Alex Biryomumeisho: Parochial Vicar at St. John Fisher, Newtown & St. Veronica, Mt. Carmel
Father Mark Bredestege: Parochial Vicar at Clermont Catholic Communities of St. Ann,Williamsburg; Holy Trinity, Batavia; St. Louis, Owensville and St. Philomena, Stonelick
Father Zach Cecil: Parochial Vicar at St. Theresa of Avila & St. William, Cincinnati
Father Christian Cone-Lombarte: Parochial Vicar Ft. Recovery cluster of St. Joseph, St. Joseph; Mary Help of Christians, Ft. Recovery; St. Paul, Sharpsburg; St. Peter in St. Peter.
Father Ambrose Dobrozsi: Parochial Vicar at Dayton XII Pastoral Region of St. Adalbert, Holy Cross, Our Lady of the Rosary, and St. Peter, Huber Heights
Father Andrew Hess: Parochial Vicar at Holy Angels Sidney and faculty at Lehman High School
Father Elias Mwesigye: Parochial Vicar at St. Susanna, Mason
Father Jeff Stegbauer: Parochial Vicar at Immaculate Heart of Mary, Anderson Township
Father Jedidiah Tritle: Parochial Vicar at All Saints, Montgomery and St. Vincent Ferrer, Kenwood
The nine new priests will contribute to the growing trend of men being ordained priests over the last decade. According to an annual survey by Georgetown University, there will be 481 men ordained to the priesthood in the United States in 2019 – an increase of 17% over the 401 men ordained in 2008. The nine men being ordained to the priesthood from the Archdiocese of Cincinnati constitute one of the largest classes this year in the country.
The large class size represents the increased enrollment at Mount St. Mary’s Seminary. This growth has stretched the seminary’s capacity to its limit. The school broke ground in fall of 2017 to build a new addition that will accommodate the increase in seminarians, as well as the increase projected in the coming years. The new addition is expected to be dedicated later this year.
The nine future priests have served as transitional deacons for the last year. Their ministry has included baptizing, assisting at marriages, and preaching at Mass. Parish assignments for the new priests will be announced at the ordination. The men graduated on May 12 of this year from The Athenaeum of Ohio, Mount St. Mary’s Seminary, after at least seven years of formation for the priesthood.
The Catholic Telegraph will have more stories on this extraordinary Ordination in the upcoming week, so check back with us!!
The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cincinnati is the 44th largest Catholic diocese in the country, with more than 450,000 Catholics, and has the fifth largest Catholic school system in terms of enrollment with more than 40,000 students. The 19-county territory includes 211 parishes and 111 Catholic primary and secondary schools.