Most Rev. Dominic Carmon, SVD, auxiliary bishop of New Orleans, ordained nine men to the priesthood on May 24 in Techny, Ill. The newly ordained Divine Word Missionaries—eight of Vietnamese descent and one from China—will serve their first assignments in various parts of the globe.
“Historically, Divine Word Missionaries have transcended boundaries—geographically, philosophically and culturally,” said Rev. Mark Weber, SVD, provincial of the Chicago Province, the religious order’s largest province in the Western Hemisphere.
“Globally, we work together,” he said. “Many of the men who are educated in the Chicago Province go elsewhere after they’re ordained. This year’s class is an excellent example. Some of them will serve in the Western and Southern U.S. Provinces; others will go to Mexico, Mozambique and Paraguay.”
Of the world’s ten largest Roman Catholic religious orders for men, the Society of the Divine Word, commonly known as Divine Word Missionaries, is the fastest growing community and the only one to experience an increase in membership over the past 40 years.
As part of his pastoral education, each seminarian completes the SVD’s Cross-Cultural Training Program, two years of ministry in a culture other than his own.
“In effect, it’s on-the-job training in missionary work,” Fr. Weber said. “They have an opportunity to learn another culture firsthand and become immersed in a language other than their primary one.”
The men ordained include: Fr. Khoa Quang Nguyen, SVD ( Mexico); Fr. Anthony Cong Nguyen, SVD ( Mozambique); Fr. Long Van Nguyen, SVD ( United States); Fr. Ky Ngoc Dinh, SVD ( United States); Fr. Chinh Trong Phan, SVD ( Paraguay); Fr. Joseph Chau Nguyen, SVD ( United States); Fr. Michael Dat Do, SVD ( Mozambique); and Fr. Chien Xuan Dinh, SVD ( United States).