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Bishop Olmsted to ordain two new priests for the Diocese of Phoenix

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The Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix, will ordain two new priests at 10 a.m. Saturday, June 1, at Ss. Simon and Jude Cathedral, 6351 N. 27th Ave. All are welcome to attend the Mass of Ordination.

"Upon their ordination, Fr. Axline and Fr. Perera will receive the grace to continue Christ's work of healing, proclaiming God's word and celebrating the Sacred Mysteries and redemption," Bishop Olmsted said. "I am delighted that they will become spiritual fathers for the faithful of the Diocese of Phoenix. Like all good fathers, I know they will serve with compassion, rooted in the Gospel of the Lord Jesus."

Kurt Jude Perera and Raymond Christopher Axline, both 28 years of age, are among an estimated 500 men in the United States who will be welcomed into the priesthood by receiving the Sacrament of Holy Orders this year.

Perera grew up attending Corpus Christi Parish in Phoenix and studied for the priesthood at the Pontifical College Josephinum in Columbus, Ohio. He graduated from Arizona State University in 2007 with two bachelor's degrees, one in religious studies and another in mathematics.

Axline, of St. Andrew the Apostle Parish in Chandler, also attended the Pontifical College Josephinum. He graduated from the University of Arizona in 2007 and received his bachelor's degree in religious studies.

Ordination is the sacramental ceremony in which Holy Orders are conferred and a man becomes a deacon, priest, or bishop, enabling him to minister in Christ's name through the Church. The rite of ordination ceremony includes various rituals, rich in meaning and history.

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix was established Dec. 2, 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Led by the Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted, more than 820,000 Catholics make this diverse, vibrant and faith-filled diocese their home.

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