WHAT WE DO
FOUNDER - FATHER DENIS HÉBERT
Denis Hébert was born July 21, 1930, in Villeneuve, Alberta, the thirteenth of 15 children of Rosaire and Marie Hébert. After spending his childhood in the small farming community, Denis felt called to the priesthood at a young age while working within the Archdiocese of Edmonton under the guidance of long-time family friend, Fr. Emile Briere.
His ambitions led him to enter the St. Joseph’s Seminary in 1952. Ordained a priest in March of 1958, Father Denis served in several parishes in and around the Archdiocese before being appointed to a small parish in Lima, Peru in June 1969. His work there was to develop a pastoral program in the Christ the Light of the World Parish. The intent of this mission was to supply priests with the knowledge that he had and to provide financial support to the local citizens.
Fathers’ success in Lima founding the backbone parish and allowing for continued archdiocese expansion by fellow priests marked the beginning of his lifelong mission in the third world. His dedicated vision of improving spiritual, human and economic conditions of developing Latin American nations fueled his challenging journey.
After 7 years in Peru, Father Denis went to Panama City and worked alongside Father Joe McGuckin in administration and did field work visiting co-operatives with the Pan-American Cooperative Institute. Fifteen months later, he was working with a Scarborough Foreign Missions team on the Caribbean Island of St. Vincent and the Grenadines where he spent 8 years in the Parish of Layou.
In July 1986, he returned to Peru and spent 2 years at the St Joseph the Worker Parish with Scarborough Missions, renewing his vision to improve social development within a group of young people and adults in the town of Chiclayo.
In 1990, Father relocated to Managua, Nicaragua to develop Social Pastoral Programs among worker-enterprises and farming communities in the Somotillo region.
Father Denis remained in Managua, in the location where he was originally appointed, up to his passing in April 2015.
Today, through the financial support of the Roots of Change Foundation and the hands of our sister organization FUNDACCO in Nicaragua, his vision and programs continue.