‘Evangeline’ to be topic of La Rencontre meeting

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LEWISTON – La Rencontre will gather at 11:30 a.m. Friday, April 7, at the Franco-American Heritage Center, 46 Cedar St. This month will feature a fish menu from Rolly’s Diner.

The program will be a lecture and slide presentation by Dr. Francoise Paradis on “Evangeline,” the fictitious character who Henry Wardsworth Longfellow made famous through his writings.

Paradis is a 13th generation descendant of parents who migrated from France to Lile D’Orlean, Quebec, in 1652. She is the seventh child in a French-speaking family of 14 children growing up in Frenchville, the heart of French-Canadian and Acadian culture in Maine. She resides in Buxton.

Paradis has served her fellow Franco-Americans, including Acadians, in her work as administrator, instructor and counselor at the University of Maine and continues to serve them in her private practice as a psychologist.

She is a member of the Maine Historical Society and volunteers as a docent at the Wardsworth Longfellow House in Portland and at the Maine Historical Society as a researcher.

Her interest in the republication of “Evangeline: A Tale of Acadie,” the writing of an accompanying study guide for teachers and students, and the compilation of an exhibition on display at the center are products of her passion for awakening people to their ancestral gifts and guiding them in their integration of the gifts with today’s journey of the heart and soul.

Everyone is invited to attend the gathering. The goal is to speak only French during the two-hour program and meal.

The cost is $6.50, and reservations must be made by calling Claudette at 786-6936 or the center at 783-1585.

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