HomeAsian AmericansBrooklyn diocese gets first Vietnamese American priest

Brooklyn diocese gets first Vietnamese American priest

Deacon Randy Thanh Nguyen became the first Vietnamese American priest at a Brooklyn diocese on Saturday, June 1.

According to Brooklyn Eagle, Nguyen was ordained alongside three other new priests during a special mass at the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph in Prospect Heights.

The 38-year-old was born in Minnesota to Vietnamese immigrant parents, The Tablet reports. Eventually, the family moved to Elmhurst, Queens. He attended Hunter College, majoring in medical studies before leaving to take orders. He also speaks Vietnamese and Spanish.

“During my free time, I would be helping and working in Our Lady of Mount Carmel, as an altar server, sacristan, volunteer, and a receptionist in the rectory office,” he told The Tablet. “God’s call was very strong in my life growing up because I would go to Mass every day when on vacation with my grandparents in Virginia, which made my faith even stronger.”

In July 2023, Nguyen became a deacon for the Diocese of Brooklyn, serving at St. Michael’s Church in Sunset Park, The Tablet reports. A year later, he became a priest.

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