Rev. Ernest L. L’Heureux

SANFORD – Rev. Ernest L. L’Heureux, 91, of Sanford, died on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2020 at the Landing in Saco following a lengthy illness.

Fr. Ernest was born in Sanford on Oct. 15, 1929 to George and Malvina (Martin) L’Heureux, one of eight children. He attended local schools and graduated from St. Ignatius High School.

Following high school he entered the Maryknoll Junior college in Lakewood, N.J. followed by philosophical studies at the Maryknoll Seminary in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. While attending college he discerned that the Lord was calling him to serve as a diocesan priest. He was accepted as a seminarian for the Diocese of Portland and completed his studies in preparation for the priesthood at the Grand Seminary of St. Sulpice in Montreal. He was ordained as a priest on May 26, 1962 at St. Joseph’s Parish in Biddeford.

Fr. Ernest spent his first summer as a priest as an assistant at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception in Portland. He was then assigned an assistant at St. Peter’s Parish in East Millinocket. The following year he was assigned as an assistant at Notre Dame Parish in Waterville. In 1966 he was named the chaplain to the Good Shepherd Sisters in Bay View and the following year was assigned as an assistant at St. John the Baptist Parish in Winslow.

In 1972 Fr. Ernest was called by the Bishop to specialized ministry and was assigned as a chaplain at Maine Medical Center in Portland for a time. Two years later he became the pastor of St. Mark’s Parish in Ashland where he oversaw the building of a new church for that community. In 1981 he accepted the Bishop’s call to move to St. Joseph’s Parish in Bridgton where he ministered for seven years. In 1988 he became pastor at St. Anne’s Parish in Gorham where he worked among God’s people for 12 years until his retirement in 2000. When discussing his retirement, Fr. Ernest said that he was not so much retiring from a parish but retiring to a new way of living out his priesthood. His commitment to his vocation did not lessen after his retirement. He continued to assist as a priest in the Sanford/Springvale community for another 15 years until he was no longer able due to declining health.

During his lifetime Fr. Ernest was able to travel many different places around the world including Egypt and throughout the Holy Land. He enjoyed playing cards, going out for coffee and socializing with his friends. He lived his life devoted to service to others and spreading the word of God. He will be lovingly remembered and dearly missed by his family and many friends and parishioners.

Fr. Ernest was predeceased by his parents; and by seven siblings.

He is survived by numerous nieces and nephews; and by countless members of his church family.

Visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. with the Rite of Reception beginning at 4 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 30 at St. Thérèse of Lisieux Parish, Holy Family Church, located on North Avenue in Sanford. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at the church at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 1 with the Most Rev. Robert P. Deeley, J.C.D., Bishop of Portland, as the principal celebrant. Interment will follow at St. Ignatius Cemetery located on Berwick Road in Sanford.

Due to the current situation with Covid-19, attendees will be asked to wear a mask and maintain proper social distance and there will be a maximum of 50 mourners permitted in church at a time.

Arrangements are under the direction of Black Funeral Homes and Cremation Service, Sanford-Springvale.

To leave a message of condolence for the family please visit http://www.blackfuneralhomes.com.

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