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New York holds largest ordination in the U.S.

.- The Archdiocese of New York celebrated the largest ordination in the U.S. this past weekend. Edward Cardinal Egan, archbishop of New York, ordained 15 men to the priesthood Saturday at St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

This was Archbishop Egan’s 24th ordination and his largest, reported Charles W. Bell of the New York Daily. Reportedly, Newark and Washington were runners-up, with 14 new priests each.

The new crop of priests is an eclectic group, made up of men from a variety of professional backgrounds. Bell reported that the class of 2004 included, among others, a foreign exchange trader, an FBI agent, a printer, a supermarket executive, a corporate systems analyst, a travel writer and a jazz musician.

William Cleary, 26, is the youngest of the class. His decision came early. Bell said Fr. Cleary applied for seminary admission the day after he graduated from college. Fr. John Palatucci, 43, the oldest in the class, worked as a jazz musician for a 12 years before he decided to study for the priesthood.

Of the 15 new priests, two are members of a missionary order and work at a Bronx church. The other 13 new priests are ministering in New York parishes. They celebrated their first masses Sunday before families, friends and former colleagues.

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