Repentigny, Saturday, September 10, 2011, a magnificent day for the 11th Annual Meeting of the Association des Blais d’Amérique. Registration starts at eight o’clock; it is time to greet old friends and meet new ones, talking about our neck of the woods while savoring a good cup of coffee.

Around 10, we make our way to the church in Repentigny. We begin with a protocol pin exchange ceremony between Lucille Blais and a city representative. Father Gérard Blais, Marianist, begins the spiritual gathering with an old Indian-American rite (white sage smoke and an eagle feather). We then head back to the Jean-Baptiste Meilleur School for the luncheon served by the "Buffet Amie Jolie".

The afternoon starts off with a guided tour on the region’s heritage. During that time, another group listens to a conference by Professor Christian Morrissonneau of the Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières. He talks about the history of the Lanaudière region: capital of tobacco culture, and its numerous lakes and forests; the role of Barthélemy Joliette in developing the City of Industry (now called Joliette); and the contribution of the religious communities to its development. He also states: "If Joliette became what it is now, it is thanks to the Clerics of Saint Viator." They arrived in 1847, when the town was starting up, bringing schooling and arts with their colleges, enriching the town with music, painting, sculpture, architecture and a museum.

At 4 p.m., it is time for the annual general meeting: budget, orientations, and activities, concluding with elections at various positions. Normand Blais succeeds Lucille Blais as President. The day ends with a sumptuous wine-accompanied supper. Recognition plaques are awarded; there are also tributes, draws, and finally goodbye until next year!

Jacques Blais M-604

Last update for this page: November 16, 2011