Two new priests ordained in Catholic Diocese of Arlington


On Saturday, June 1, the Catholic Diocese of Arlington ordained two new priests.

The Rev. James R. Joseph, 32, and the Rev. Sean-Michael Nypaver, 29, were ordained at Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Gainesville by Bishop Michael F. Burbidge.

“We are blessed in the Diocese of Arlington in this our Jubilee Year to ordain today priests who, like in the past, are well qualified, prepared and blessed with many priestly virtues and gifts,” said Bishop Burbidge during his homily. “As we heard in today's Gospel, the Lord sent his disciples out into the world in pairs. He will do so again today with these two men.”

For the second consecutive year, the ordinations took place at Holy Trinity because of the ongoing renovations at the Cathedral of St. Thomas More. Ordinations are expected to return to the cathedral in 2025.

“Go forth today as missionaries of mercy, as evangelizers assuring those who for one reason or another have wandered away from the Lord and his church that He, and all of us, stand ready to embrace them in love and to welcome them home,” Bishop Burbidge said.

Having first answered God's call by entering seminary and continuing their journey at their ordination to the transitional diaconate last year, the two men on Saturday made their priestly promises and gave themselves entirely to God, laying prostrate at the foot of the altar. After Bishop Burbidge laid hands on both candidates' heads, he prayed the ordination prayer and they officially became priests.

Father Joseph is a native of Allentown, Pa. He has been assigned to St. Leo the Great Catholic Church in Fairfax and will serve as parochial vicar.

“I think I'm most passionate about preaching the mercy of God,” said Father Joseph, a convert to Catholicism, adding he wants “to let people know they are loved.”

Father Nypaver grew up to the west of Father Joseph in Pittsburgh. He has been assigned to St. Timothy Catholic Church in Chantilly and will serve as parochial vicar.

Father Nypaver said he is most excited about celebrating Mass “because nothing is more beneficial for the whole world and you get to do it every day.”