to Saint Anne

Pastoral theme 2014: “I LOVE THE CHURCH, MY FAMILY”

The Novena is held from July 17 to 25. It concludes with the Feastday of Saint Anne on July 26. It is the most important time of the year at the Shrine.


Monseigneur Denis Grondin was born on October 23, 1954 in Rimouski, Québec. He did his secondary school studies at the St. Francois Seminary, and at the St. Augustin Seminary, then at the Petit Séminaire of Québec, in Health Sciences.  After studying medicine in university and a pastoral experience in schools at St. Croix de Lotbinière and at Patro St. Vincent de Paul, he entered the Grand Séminaire of Québec.  He was ordained as a priest on May 21, 1989. He became vicar in diverse regions of the  Québec diocese and then a priest in the Charlevoix region (Notre-Dame-des-Monts, Sacré -Coeur-de-Jésus de Pointe-au-Pic, Saint-Aimé-des-Lacs, Saint-Étienne de La Malbaie, Saint-Fidèle, Saint-Firmin de Baie-Sainte-Catherine, Sainte-Irénée, Saint-Phillippe de Clermont, Saint-Siméon et Sainte-Agnes).  He is also a pastoral associate in healthcare sector.

Monseigneur Gaétan Proulx was born on May 27, 1947 in Saint-Denis-de-Brompton, in the Eastern Townships. He did his first years of classical studies at the Notre-Dame des Servites College at Ayers Cliff and finished his fifth year of high school at Saint-Augustin Seminary in 1968. He did his Solemn Vows amongst the Servites of Mary Order in 1973. His academic path includes Philosophy at both Ottawa University, and at Dominican College in Ottawa, then in Theology at Laval University (masters od Divinity) and one year at the Superior Institute of Liturgy from the Catholic Institute of Paris. He was ordained as a priest on June 8, 1975. He then became an assistant and master of novices in Sillery and St Foy, Quebec.  In 1985, in France (Seez), he was nominated as Prior of the Servite Community, then in Belgium (Bruxelles) where he returned as formation director.  He continued his role as formation director in Quebec in 1991, all the while appearing at the parish of Saint-Jean-Baptise-de-la-Salle. In the year 2000 he became the Prior provincial of the Canadian Servites province which includes France and Belgium.  Since 2005, he is pastor at the Notre Dame de Foy parish (administrator and priest)


Archbishop Gerry Pettipas, C.Ss.R.  Archbishop of Grouard-McLennan.

Mgr Petitpas 1

I was born on September 6th, 1950, the third son of what would become a four-child family; my sister is the youngest and by far the prettiest! My father was in the RCAF all the while that I was young, and so we grew up mostly on air force bases. Since my birth, these were in Halifax NS, St-Sylvestre QC, Beaverbank NS, Portage la Prairie MB, and Halifax once again. In 1966, at the age of 16, I left home to test a possible vocation as a Redemptorist priest, first of all at the minor seminary in Brockville ON. Once I completed my high school education in Brockville, I went on to Windsor ON in 1968. 

After three years I graduated with a B.A. from the University of Windsor in 1971. My next stage of education was to be theology. At that time, I was sent to study with the Redemptorists of the Ste-Anne de Beaupré Province. Their seminary was in Montréal. I was not at all fluent in French, and so to pick up some skill in la langue française, I spent the summer of 1971 in Magog QC, working at the Canadian Tire Store. Wouldn’t you know it … at the end of the summer, I could sell you a hammer and nails in French, but I couldn’t tell you much about heaven and hell! I only did one year of theology studies at the Université de Montréal. In 1972, I began my novitiate year in Toronto at the newly-established Gerard House (named after the patron saint of expectant mothers, St. Gerard Majella).  Following my profession of vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, a year doing vocation promotion, more years of theology, ordination to the diaconate, and an internship year at St. Teresa’s Parish, St. John’s NL, I was ordained a priest in Toronto on May 7th, 1977.

What followed has been a veritable jigsaw puzzle of assignments and events that have kept my life busy and very interesting! Parish ministry in St. John’s, Toronto and Grande Prairie. Youth ministry in Toronto, St. John’s and Saint John NB. Vocation director in Toronto, St. John’s and Windsor ON. Novice master in Windsor. Rector of our college in Windsor. Throw in there some other formative experiences: a sabbatical year in Hartford CT (after which I had an MA in spirituality and counseling), and a summer experience of the Third World in Jamaica (not the resorts around Montego Bay!). Until recently, I was pastor of St. Joseph Parish in Grande Prairie. This had been my longest single assignment, due to the process of building a new church. 

To my great surprise, in late 2006 I was assigned as the new archbishop of Grouard-McLennan, and was ordained as a bishop on January 25th, 2007. As I look back on my life, I am filled with joy and wonder at God’s ways. I have sought out none of this for myself, and have tried only to be attentive to God’s call. In the end, what can I say? “Thanks, God. You’re the greatest!”


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