Father Phillip M. Johnson, who has served as priest in charge at Saint Thomas More Parish in Cherry Hill since July 2012, began a six-year term as pastor of the parish on Jan. 20.
Bishop Dennis Sullivan made the announcement on Feb. 1.
Before being assigned to Saint Thomas More, Father Johnson served on a ministry team at Saint Bridget University Parish in Glassboro, 2010-12.
Father Johnson, 65, is a former Lutheran minister who is married and has four grown children. Previously pastor of Saint Paul Lutheran Church (1988-2006) and Grace Lutheran Church (1986-88), both in Jersey City, he was received, along with his wife Janet, into the Catholic Church in 2006.
The Catholic Church accepts married men to the priesthood on a case-by-case basis, for reasons of pastoral need.
Father Johnson completed a theology program at the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and the Family at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., and completed the requirements for ordination at Saint Mary’s Seminary and University in Baltimore.
He was ordained by Bishop Joseph Galante in Incarnation church, Mantua, on May 22, 2010.