Father Gilles (Gilbert) Lague, C.S.C: The last of a long line of Canadian Missionaries in Bangladesh

Father Gilles (Gilbert) Lague, C.S.C, a veteran missionary from Canada and the last of a long line of Canadian missionaries to the Work of Bengal, died in Dhaka on November 9, 2023. He was a member of the Sacred Heart of Jesus Province, Bangladesh. He was 84 years old and served for well over 50 years here.

Besides his native French, he was totally fluent in English and Bengali. His early work was in different mission stations, Gournadi, Narikelbari, and Noakhali. He was also, at one time, director of the Pastoral and Retreat Center at Sagardi in Barishal.

He is, however, best remembered for his work in helping others to form their spiritual lives. He was a man with a deep prayer life and he helped so many to develop theirs. He was a sought-after spiritual director and frequent retreat director.

This led to a long term as Novice Director for the Holy Cross seminarians and Brothers at the novitiate in Barishal. This was followed by another long stint as Spiritual Director at the National Major Seminary, Banani, Dhaka (Now Holy Spirit Major Seminary). Father was also deeply involved in a program of the Bangladesh Conference of Religious, the Spiritual Direction Course, which trains priests, Sisters, and Brothers to be spiritual directors. His contribution to the Church in Bangladesh through these ministries is immense.

He also had a life-long relationship with the Congregation of the Little Handmaids of the Church as a chaplain, spiritual guide, and advisor. In later years, he also served the Missionaries of Charity in a number of ways. When our Province first sent seminarians to Canada for Theological studies, Father spent one year and six months with them helping in their seminary formation there as someone familiar with Canadian and Bengali culture and language. In his last years, as he grew older and had some health problems, he lived at Moreau House, Banasree, Rampura, Dhaka. We could all see how often he was in the Chapel praying and how faithful he was to community life. He was an avid reader of spiritual books

When it was learned that he had kept all of his homily notes from Mass, there was a desire to see them published and we now all have this two-volume work, full of spiritual insight.

We thank God for Fr. Gilbert’s life. We thank God for his life’s work. We thank God for his life’s work’s fruit. That fruit is and will remain among us.

Biography of Father Gilles (Gilbert) Lague, CSC

Name: Fr. Gilles Lague, CSC

Father’s name: Alfred Laguë

Mother’s name: Aldéa Lablante

Birth Place: St Valérien, Co. Milton

Parish & Diocese: St Valérien.  Dioc. St Hyuacinthe

Date of Birth: 29-11-1939

Reception at Novitiate: 15-08-1959

First Vows: 16-08-1960

Date of Perpetual Vows: 31-08-1963

Date of Diaconate Ordination: 1965

Date of Priestly Ordination: 18-12-1965

Formation Life                                    

Petit Séminair de Sainte Croix (7-12),

Nociciate (15.08.59-16.08.60)

BA ( Moreau Seminary) 60-62,

Theology in Rome 62-66


I to VII grade in 4 different schools

Matriculation to Rhetoric at Holy Cross  Minor Seminary

BA at Collège Saint Laureent

Licentiate in Theology at the Gregorian University, Rome.

Bangla Language Learning, Assignments & Other Activities

1966-1967: Bangla language one-year course, Oriental, Barishal

1967-1971: Assistant Priest in Narikelbari

1971-1972: Pastoral Theology At St Albert le grand                                            

1972-1974 : Parish Priest, Narikelbari

1974-1980: Parish Priest, Noakhali

1980-1985 : Parish Priest, Gouronodi

1985-1990 : Novice Master, Sagordi

1990-1991: One year Ignatian Sprituality Quebec City

1991-1994: Novice Master, Holy Cross Novitiate, Sagordi, Barishal

1994-2002: Spiritual Director, Banani Major Seminary, Dhaka

2002-2009: Director, Pastoral and Retreat Center, Oriental Institute, Sagordi, Barishal

2009-2011: 2 years in Montreal with two Bengali Seminarians

2011-2020: Spiritual Director Moreau Seminary

Retirement & Residence

2021-2023: Moreau House, Banasree, Rampura, Dhaka

Died on: November 09, 2023, at Square Hospitals Ltd. Dhaka, Bangladesh.           


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