Francis Bégin will be ordained to the priesthood on October 2, 7:30 p.m. at Jesus Light of the World Parish (Mary Queen of Peace Church). After a long journey, he reminds everyone to "not be afraid to answer God's call", because "it is the most beautiful thing that can happen to us. God wants our happiness and He knows what is the best way for us".
Not having grown up in a particularly Christian family, it was at school that Francis was challenged by his teachers, at a time when catechesis was offered as part of the school curriculum. After his confirmation in the 6th grade, he stopped hearing about Jesus, but around the age of 16 he still felt himself being challenged, even though he did not come from a context favourable to religion. He felt attracted to religion and therefore began to read the Bible. Around the age of 20 he began to frequent a group of young people and felt his first call to the priesthood around the age of 22: "I felt God's call, but my plan was marriage. I'd rather walk the road to marriage."
Over the course of a few romantic relationships, the call to the priesthood became more and more present: “Look”, I said, “we're gonna give God a chance, we're gonna make a spiritual discernment and after that I couldn't resist God's call anymore."
At the age of 39 he entered the major seminary and made it to the end of his studies, by the grace of God. "I am not an intellectual, I have never done big studies and doing philosophy was completely unthinkable, but God gave me the tools to succeed in getting through".
On October 4, 2019 he was ordained deacon on the feast of St. Francis of Assisi, the choice of the date being a beautiful wink of God's eye to his first name, Francis.
Love of Youth in the Church
"To do God's will" is the vocation of a priest today for Francis. "The universal vocation is holiness, but each one of us has a particular vocation. The important thing is to respond to the call that God sends us and to be holy in the world in which we live". He sees the priest as someone at the service of God's people, to help children, adults and the elderly to go ever more towards Christ. Raising the challenges of living in a society that "is no longer Christian", he believes that one of the challenges that awaits him in his life as a priest is "to be present in the world to help people discover God".
During his internships he discovered that he loved working with adolescents, and he wants to continue to be involved. He is currently doing a master's degree in youth ministry on the theme of implementing a multidimensional youth ministry in the parish: "I want to consecrate my priesthood to youth, to challenge young people, to work with young people, to make projects with them".
"God has called us all to holiness."
His priestly ordination will be celebrated on October 2, 2020, on the feast of the Guardian Angels, under the motto "God has called us all to holiness". The Mass will be presided over by Bishop Christian Lépine at 7:30 pm. Francis Bégin invites everyone to join him in prayer. To watch it 'live' through the Diocese of Montreal Youtube page, click here.
For more information:
Mary Queen of Peace Church
11075 Boul. Gouin O,
To read Francis Bégin's testimony given on the occasion of his ordination to the diaconate: