Catholic Ordination in Siberia Will Be First Since 1917

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VATICAN CITY, JUNE 8, 2001 (Zenit.org).- Siberia on Sunday will see the first ordination of a Catholic priest since the 1917 Communist revolution.

Deacon Yevgeni Yuryevitch will be ordained by Cardinal Darío Castrillón Hoyos, prefect of the Congregation for the Clergy, in the Catholic cathedral of Irkutsk.

The Colombian cardinal is participating in the ordination at the invitation of Bishop Jerzy Mazur, apostolic administrator of Eastern Siberia.

During his visit to Siberia, Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos will also meet with the priests, religious and catechists of the apostolic administration.

There are only 14 priests in Eastern Siberia, who serve 50,200 Catholics spread over 6 million square kilometers (2.4 million square miles).

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