Two brothers who say they were sexually abused by an Orthodox priest in Winnipeg will have their testimony considered jointly.

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Archbishop Kenneth (Seraphim) Storheim was suspended by the Orthodox Church of America after two sexual assault charges were laid against him in November 2010. (Archdiocese of Canada)

The decision was made by Court of Queen's Bench Justice Christopher Mainella in the trial of Seraphim Storheim.

Storheim's defence lawyer had argued each brother's testimony should not be used to bolster the other's claim.

The judge ruled each brother's testimony is important in determining whether sexual abuse occurred.

Storheim is accused of sexually assaulting the boys at separate times in the summer of 1985.

Dates must now be set for the defence to present its case.

There is no word yet on whether Storheim will testify.

Storheim, now in his 60s, worked as a priest in the Orthodox Church in America in Alberta, North Carolina, London, Ont., and other areas.

He became the church's top cleric in Canada several years ago.

The church is separate from other Orthodox religions such as the Greek Orthodox Church and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.