A former Orthodox archbishop has been ordered to stand trial in Winnipeg on sexual assault charges dating back more than 25 years.


Archbishop Kenneth William Storheim stepped aside in the fall of 2010 as head of the Canadian diocese of the Orthodox Church in America. ((Archdiocese of Canada))

Following a preliminary inquiry, the Manitoba Court of Queen's Bench on Wednesday ordered Kenneth William Storheim, 65, to stand trial.

Details of the preliminary inquiry cannot be published due to a court-ordered ban. A trial date will be set on March 14.

Storheim is charged with two counts of sexual assault based on allegations that he molested two pre-teen boys in 1985. He pleaded not guilty to the charges on Nov. 18.

He was the rector of Holy Trinity Sobor [parish] in Winnipeg's North End from December 1984 to June 1987, according to an online biography on the church's website.

He has also held positions at churches in London, Ont., Saskatoon, North Carolina and Alberta.

Known as Archbishop Seraphim in church circles, Storheim most recently headed up the Canadian diocese of the Orthodox Church in America.

He took a leave of absence from that position in the fall of 2010 as police investigated the abuse claims.