Three priests of the Apostles of Jesus community serving in Oregon are celebrating silver jubilees this year. They’ll mark the milestone with a Mass set for Sunday, Aug. 22, 1 p.m. at St. Philip Neri Church in Southeast Portland.

Fathers Frederick Nkwasibwe, Cornelius Ssekitto and Freddy Ocun were born in Uganda and were drawn to missionary life before being ordained in 1996. They are three of the 10 Apostles of Jesus priests serving in hospital and parish ministries in the Archdiocese of Portland.

The Apostles of Jesus were founded on Aug. 22, 1968 in Moroto Uganda.

Bishop Sisto Mazzoldi and Father John Marengoni, both Comboni Missionaries from Italy serving in East Africa, had separately been pondering a local community of priests. They met during a trip in Uganda and exchanged ideas.

Reading the signs of the times, both concluded that for its development and survival, the Catholic Church in Africa needed local missionaries to serve there and in other parts of the world. That marked the beginning of the Apostles of Jesus.

The Vatican and local church officials gave approval and the congregation was founded for evangelizing, planting or reviving the church in faraway lands and helping parishes grow and become self-supporting.

Bishop Peter Smith, a native of South Africa, will be main celebrant at the Aug. 22 Mass. The three jubilarians will travel to Uganda at the end of the year for further celebrations there.