FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 3, 2023
The Most Reverend Robert Brennan, Bishop of Brooklyn today ordained four men as priests of the Diocese of Brooklyn during a Mass of Ordination, at the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph, located at 856 Pacific Street in the Prospect Heights section of Brooklyn.
The new priests and their parish assignments are as follows:
Father Nnamdi Eusebius Eze, St. Gregory the Great in the Bellerose section of Queens
Father Ernesto Alonso-Aguila, St. Leo in the Corona section of Queens
Father Samuel Mwiwawi, Immaculate Conception in the Astoria section of Queens
Father Thimote Cherelus, St. Matthias in the Ridgewood section of Queens
“Indeed, the Church in Brooklyn and Queens, indeed the whole Church, rejoices in this magnificent gift. We give thanks to God for His grace and the courageous and generous response of these men about to be ordained. We rejoice and implore you to rely on God’s grace; let your friendship with Christ be at the very heart of everything that you do and more importantly, all that you are,” said Bishop Brennan in his remarks prior to ordaining the four new priests.
Biographical information on each of the four new priests ordained to the Diocese of Brooklyn can be found below.
*Father Nnamdi Eusebius Eze
Nnamdi Eusebius Eze, born in Nigeria, graduated from the University of Nigeria in Nsukka with a degree in mechanical engineering. He has served the Catholic Church since becoming an altar server shortly after his First Holy Communion. In 2015, after the urging of his family, including an uncle who was serving as a priest in the Diocese of Brooklyn, he arrived in New York and entered St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie. Since his ordination as a transitional deacon, he has served at Our Lady of Grace in Howard Beach.
*Father Ernesto Alonso-Aguila
Ernesto Alonso, born in Havana, Cuba, became a missionary serving in the rural areas of the country as a young adult. In 2007, he joined his father in Miami, and began a career as a chef upon earning an associate’s degree from Le Cordon Bleu College of Culinary Arts. After eight years as a restaurant chef in Miami, he moved to New York City. At the age of 29, while living in Astoria, Queens, Ernesto began to consider a vocation to the priesthood, enrolling in the Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Massachusetts. Since his ordination as a transitional deacon, he has served at Holy Redeemer in East Boston.
*Father Samuel Mwiwawi
Samuel Mwiwawi was born in Kenya and is fluent in American Sign Language which he began to learn to help teach the Gospel to the hearing-impaired among his community. Upon his arrival to the United States, Samuel joined the Dominican Missionaries for the Apostolates of the Deaf and Disabled and spent a summer in a program at Gallaudet University in Washington, D.C., dedicated to deaf and hard of hearing students. In 2018-2019, the Dominicans recommended him to Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens to help interpret sign language. He completed his priestly studies at the Pope St. John XXIII National Seminary in Weston, Massachusetts, and has served as a Transitional Deacon at St. Bernard in Mill Basin.
*Father Thimote Cherelus
Thimote Cherelus was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and became fascinated with the priesthood at the early age of five. His pastor encouraged him to get involved in parish ministries. He attended Catholic primary and high school, was awarded a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Port-au-Prince, and began a career as a business owner. He then earned a second bachelor’s degree in philosophy on a scholarship from Divine World College in Epworth, Iowa. Thimote then came to the Diocese of Brooklyn and resided in the St. John Paul II House of Discernment for one year, during which time his vocation to the priesthood was confirmed for him. He entered St. Joseph’s Seminary in Dunwoodie where he completed his priestly studies. As a transitional deacon, he has served at Our Lady of Fatima in Jackson Heights.