Priest ordained for Palmerston North diocese


Peter Trung Nguyen was ordained to the priesthood by Cardinal John Dew at the Cathedral of the Holy Spirit in Palmerston North last Saturday.

The event had been postponed from April because of COVID-19 restrictions.

And because COVID-19 Alert level remains at 2, numbers were still restricted.

Nguyen said that while he was happy to be ordained he was sad none of his family from overseas were able to attend because of COVID-19 travel restrictions.

The ceremony was streamed online, and he plans to visit his family once things return to normal.

The 31-year-old is originally from the city of Vinh, about 300km south of Hanoi in Vietnam.

He has been living in New Zealand for eight years.

He has family in seven countries and three of his brothers are training to be priests in India, Colombia and the United States.

Nguyen started helping his parish when he was 12. He later studied a philosophy degree.

When he came to Palmerston North he had to learn English at the English Teaching College.

He then moved to Auckland to train at the Good Shepherd College for six and a half years, which included a one-year placement in Hastings.

Fr Trung said  that adapting to the culture and learning English, had been difficult; “but the love from the people around and the encouragement helped me to overcome those challenges.”

He has been appointed as an assistant priest in the parish of Hastings.


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