Seminarian to be ordained a priest of Paterson Diocese on June 1


Bishop Kevin J. Sweeney will ordain Deacon Sebastián Muñoz Chavarría, a seminarian, to the priesthood of the Paterson Diocese, during a Mass on June 1 at 10 a.m. in the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Paterson.

During the Rite of Ordination, steeped in the rich traditions of the early Church, Bishop Sweeney will ordain Deacon Muñoz, a native of Colombia. The bishop will celebrate the Mass and deliver the homily. Priests from the diocese and beyond will concelebrate the Mass. Many deacons and seminarians will assist at the liturgy.

That morning, St. John’s will welcome a wide spectrum of well-wishers — family, friends, priests, and religious of the diocese, members of the parishes where Deacon Muñoz had served, and the faithful from the diocese and beyond.

Deacon Muñoz was born on Dec. 4, 1997, in San Pedro de los Milagros, Antioquia, Colombia, to Jesus Maria Munoz Alzate and Miryan Elena Chavarria Munoz.

Deacon Muñoz’s home parish is St. Vincent de Paul Parish in the Stirling neighborhood of Long Hill Township.

His education includes high school at Normal Superior Señor de los Milagros, San Pedro, Colombia; philosophy and religious education studies at the Seminario Diocesano Santo Tomás de Aquino, Universidad Católica del Norte — Santa Rosa de Osos, Colombia; and English as a Second Language at Rutgers University in Newark and the State University of New York at Buffalo. He studied Pre-Theology II and First Theology at Christ the King Seminary in East Aurora, N.Y., until it closed in 2019, and then transferred to Immaculate Conception Semin-ary at Seton Hall University in South Orange for a Masters of Divinity in pastoral ministry.

Bishop Sweeney ordained Deacon Muñoz to the transitional diaconate on May 20, 2023, in St. John’s.

Deacon Muñoz’s pastoral experiences included assignments to St. Anthony of Padua Parish in Passaic, St. Catherine of Siena Parish in Mountain Lakes, and St. Vincent de Paul Parish in Long Hill Township. He served an apostolate at St. Joseph’s University Medical Center in Paterson, from fall 2022 to spring 2023, and his diaconate assignment at St. Philip the Apostle Parish in Clifton.

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