Vietnamese priest to serve Ss. Mary & Mathias Parish in Muscatine

Father Khoa Le of Vietnam has been appointed parochial vicar at Ss. Mary & Mathias Parish in Muscatine.

By Anne Marie Amacher
The Catholic Messenger

Due to a connection with Father Joseph Phung, the Diocese of Davenport has welcomed Father Khoa Le of Vietnam to serve in this diocese.

Father Joseph Phung, pastor at Holy Family Parish in Fort Madison, said Father Le is from the Archdiocese of Hue, which is his former archdiocese. “He has three uncles who are priests,” Father Phung noted of Father Le. “I knew all of them, especially the one who taught me at the diocesan seminary in Hue. Father Le also has a brother who is a priest.”

Father Khoa, 36, was born in Thua Thien Hue, Vietnam. His home parish is An Van in Hue, Vietnam. After completing high school, he graduated from the University of Hue with a bachelor’s degree in physics. He studied for the priesthood at Major Seminary of Hue. He was ordained to the priesthood on June 12, 2015, at Phu Cam Cathedral by Bishop Francis Xavier Le Van Hong.


As a seminarian, he did pastoral work in Loanly Parish, a community Father Phung called home during childhood. Family members of Father Phung spoke highly of Le. Father Phung, who was in Vietnam in 2015 for a family wedding, met Father Le at his first parish after ordination.

In 2016, Father Phung learned from his brother who resides in Mount Pleasant that Father Le received a scholarship to study in the United States. Father Le earned a master of pastoral theology from Seton Hall University in New Jersey.

“Last year, knowing that Father Khoa was about to finish his studying in New Jersey and was considering to stay and do more study in the U.S., I invited him to come and work for our diocese,” Father Phung said. “He agreed and here he is.”
Father Phung thanks Bishop Thomas Zinkula for allowing Father Le to serve in the Davenport Diocese.

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