Eighth Bishop of Quebec, Canada ; born Quebec, 24 April, 1710; died 7 June, 1788. After completing his studies at the Quebec Seminary, he was ordained priest in 1734 and appointed pastor of Saint-Pierre-d'Orléans. After thirty-five years of humble ministry, he was called to the episcopate and consecrated coadjutor of Quebec, 12 July, 1772, the first native of Canada to attain to the dignity of bishop. On the resignation of Bishop Briand , he succeeded to the See of Quebec 29 Nov., 1784. In his first pastoral letter he alludes to the appointment of a coadjutor, a precaution justified by age, infirmity, and the necessity of securing a successor. Bishop Jean-François Hubert was nominated coadjutor that same year, but the approval of the British Government was withheld till 1786. Bishop d'Esglis tried unsuccessfully to supply the dearth of clergy by obtaining priests from France. The British Government favoured preferably the emigration of priests for the settlements in Upper Canada and the Maritime Provinces. Pending the arrival of a missionary for the Acadians, a layman was authorized to baptize and witness marriage contracts. Bishop d'Esglis issued (1787) a pastoral letter to all the faithful of the lower provinces, exhorting them to union and steadfastness in the Faith. He died in the fifty-fifth year of his priesthood and was buried at Saint-Pierre.
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