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Msgr. Raymond Begin

Msgr. Raymond Begin

Please pray for the repose of the soul of Reverend Monsignor Raymond F. Begin, 90, whom the Lord called to his eternal home on Friday, February 15, 2019.  He had been living in Venice, Florida.

Raymond was born to Henry D. and Rose Zelpha (Gauthier) Begin in Lewiston, Maine, on February 19, 1928.  He received his education at the following schools/institutions: St. Louis School, Auburn (grammar); St. Charles Seminary, Sherbrooke, Quebec (high school and two years of college); and St. Paul’s Seminary, Ottawa, Ontario (philosophy and theology).  After completing his seminary education and formation, he was ordained to the priesthood by The Most Reverend Daniel J. Feeney, the Eighth Bishop of Portland, at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception, Portland, on June 7, 1952.

As a priest, he served in the following assignments:

  • St. John Parish, Bangor (Parochial Vicar/Assistant 1952-53)
  • St. Agatha Parish, St. Agatha (Parochial Vicar/Assistant 1953-55)
  • The Catholic University of America (Advanced Studies in Canon Law in preparation for a Doctorate, from 1955-58)
    • Assistant at St. Christopher Parish, Peaks Island
  • Diocesan Tribunal
    • Notary – appointed in 1956 (while studying Canon Law at CUA)
    • Ecclesiastical Secretary – appointed in 1959
    • Defender of the Bond – appointed in 1959
    • Officialis – appointed 1964-1992
    • Judge, Tribunal of the Boston Province – appointed in 1983
  • Assistant at St. Dominic Parish, Portland – appointed in 1958
  • Chaplain & Confessor at St. Joseph’s Convent, Portland – appointed in 1959-69
  • Chaplain at Pineland Hospital & Training Center – appointed in 1959-67
  • Holy Martyrs of North America Parish, Falmouth (1969-79)
  • Holy Family Parish, Lewiston (1979-87)
  • Holy Family Parish, Lisbon Falls (1987-1992)
  • St. Gregory Parish, Gray (1992-1997)

On March 25, 1967, the Holy Father made him a Monsignor, with the rank of Domestic Prelate.  In addition, Msgr. Begin also served the bishops, diocese and his brother priests as a member of the Diocesan Priests’ Senate (1966), the Priests’ Personnel Board (1976-79), and the Diocesan Board of Consultors (1980-83).

After 45 years of pastoral ministry, including 40 years of service to the Diocesan Tribunal, Msgr. Begin retired from full-time active ministry on July 1, 1997.  At that time, Bishop Joseph Gerry, O.S.B, wrote:  “In 1992 [on the occasion of your fortieth anniversary of ordination to priesthood], I wrote, ‘In the short time that I have been here, I have appreciated your straightforwardness, your uprightness, your integrity and your honesty.’ My opinion has not changed one bit.  Let me add to that your tireless advocacy on behalf of literally thousands of men and women of the Diocese who have been reconciled to the Church through your judicial wisdom and pastoral concern in your tribunal ministry.”

Msgr. Begin was predeceased by his five siblings:  Jeanette Ouellette Frye, Thérèse Kelley, Henri Begin, Jr., Juliette Begin and Maurice Begin.  He is survived by cousins, nieces, and nephews.

May Msgr. Raymond Begin’s soul, and the souls of all the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.