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Saturday, December 10, 2011

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Father Lucien Bouillon from school car student to high school cadet corps officer to first Roman Catholic priest ordained in Sacred Heart Church in Chapleau

Father Lucien
Lucien Bouillon, who later became the first priest ordained in Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church in Chapleau, received his early education in the school car that served communities along the main line of the Canadian Pacific Railway.

Before moving into Chapleau when Lucien was ten, his family lived at Carry, a hamlet west of Chapleau on the CPR line.

"My first school experience was that of a school car which was very small with only about seven students and Mr. Wright as our teacher," Lucien wrote in the Chapleau Sentinel, marking the 100th anniversary of Sacred Heart Parish.

He also recalled attending mass in the living room of a private home with the priest and very few people attending.

After moving to Chapleau, Lucien found the town, the school and the church much bigger. "Going to school was almost a trauma because on my first day of school I got lost with the halls and all the doors compared to a one room school car."

At Sacred Heart he began serving mass for Mgr. Romeo Gascon at the early morning service and listening to D.O. Payette sing 'the Mass of Angels' all in Latin.

As a student at Chapleau High School, Lucien became a member of 1181 CHS Cadet Corps rising to the rank of Cadet Lieutenant in command of a platoon by 1957

Ian Macdonald recalled that Lucien attended the Royal Canadian Army Cadet camp at Ipperwash, Ontario in the summer of 1955 in the senior leaders course "along with myself (Ian), Ray Soucie. Ton Comte and Brian Fraser. You usually had to take that course to qualify as an officer in the cadet corps in those days."

The Bouillon Family 1986
Lucien was also very active in the Chapleau Ski Club, and the development of its "new hill (the present location) in the 1950s.

Back at Sacred Heart parish, Lucien assisted in digging out the basement with pails as part of the construction project of the parish hall, and was greatly involved in the Catholic Youth Club under the leadership of Mrs. Marie Tremblay. He particularly recalled the club's trips to Ottawa and Banff.

When he was in Grade 12, Father Marchand asked Lucien if he would be willing to meet with the Bishop to see if he could go to seminary to study for the priesthood, even though at the time it was not his first choice of vocation.

The rest is history.

On June 19, 1965, Lucien was ordained priest in Sacred Heart Church in Chapleau by Bishop Jacques Landriault when Fr. Lampron was the parish priest, making history as the first priest to be ordained in the church.

Father Albert Burns s.j., of Chapleau, preached the sermon as Lucien celebrated his first mass at the church.

However, he preached his first sermons at Sacred Heart as a deacon during the Christmas season of 1964.

During his priesthood, Lucien served at several parishes in the Roman Catholic Diocese of Hearst including Sacred Heart, Chapleau.

Whenever in Chapleau Lucien enjoyed visiting with his old friends Jiggs and Marie Tremblay, and celebrating Mass at their camp at Esher. He also enjoyed the outdoors all his life.

Andre, Jiggs, Father Lucien, Marie, Helene
In his article for the celebration of the Sacred Heart Centennial, Lucien wrote that "... the memories are numerous and heart warming, and every time I return to Chapleau they are felt and remembered especially in the faces recognized, the places visited and the circumstances remembered. When I celebrate Mass and drive around they seem to come to life."

Lucien George Bouillon, 72, died on September 17,2011. My email is mj.morris@live.ca

Michael J Morris

Michael J Morris
MJ with Buckwheat (1989-2009) Photo by Leo Ouimet

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