Pope Francis accepted the resignation of the Most Reverend Paul Lortie as Bishop of the Diocese of Mont-Laurier, and appointed the Most Reverend Paul-André Durocher, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Gatineau, as the Apostolic Administrator of the Diocese of Mont-Laurier. Bishop Lortie has been the Bishop of the Diocese of Mont-Laurier for the past seven years. He submitted his resignation to the Holy Father upon reaching the age of 75, as required by the Code of Canon Law.
Bishop Lortie was born in Beauport, Québec, on March 17, 1944. He attended the Séminaire du Sacré-Coeur de Saint-Victor de Beauce, the Grand Séminaire de Québec, as well as the Université Laval. He later completed further studies in the areas of catechetical pastoral care and collegial studies at the Institut Catholique de Paris and the Université Laval respectively. He was ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of Québec on May 16, 1970. He served as an auxiliary priest at the Séminaire de St-Victor for a period of two years (1970-1972) while concurrently holding various positions with the Diocesan Education Office (1970-1983). He was the assistant to the General Secretary of the Assemblée des évêques catholiques du Québec (AECQ) (1983-1989) prior to becoming the director of the Office de la mission des religieux et religieuses et des vocations (1991-1994). From 1995 to 2008, Bishop Lortie served in pastoral ministry in the Archdiocese of Québec prior to being named Episcopal Vicar for the four pastoral regions of that Archdiocese in March 2008. On April 7, 2009, he was appointed Auxiliary Bishop for the Archdiocese of Québec and ordained Bishop on May 24, 2009. On January 31, 2012, he was appointed Bishop of the Diocese of Mont-Laurier and installed on March 15, 2012.
As a member of the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB), Bishop Lortie served as member of the then permanent Committee for Communications (2011-2014), as member of the Commission for Justice and Peace (2011-2014), as Bishop ponens (French Sector) for the Catholic Organization for Life and Family (COLF) (2014-2018), and as COLF President (2016-2018).
Archbishop Durocher was ordained Auxiliary Bishop of the Diocese of Sault-Ste-Marie in 1997 where he served for five years. In 2002, he was appointed Bishop of Alexandria-Cornwall where he served for nine years prior to his appointment as Archbishop of the Archdiocese of Gatineau in 2011.
The Diocese of Mont-Laurier has 16 parishes and missions, with a Catholic population of 77,965 served by 23 diocesan priests, three priests who are members of institutes of consecrated life, two permanent deacons, five Sisters who are members of institutes of consecrated life, as well as ten lay pastoral assistants.
The Archdiocese of Gatineau has 53 parishes and missions, with a Catholic population of 252,478 served by 42 diocesan priests, 20 priests who are members of institutes of consecrated life, four permanent deacons, three Brothers and 91 Sisters who are members of institutes of consecrated life, as well as nine lay pastoral assistants.