Street To The Heart
“Sharing is happiness.”
“La mort ferme les yeux du mourant mais ouvre les yeux du vivant.”
“You just need to look into the eyes of the other person.”
This might sound like hyperbole, but a sit-down with Jean-Marie is a paradigm-shifting experience.
A Life In The Spotlight
Jean-Marie has been a part of so many interesting projects throughout his life: from his professional beginnings as an actor (on popular Quebec shows such as Chambre en Ville and Lance et Compte) and host (club des 100 watts), to performing at an international level in Dragon Boat racing.
Where Jean-Marie’s life took a turn that really makes his story stand out is when he felt a calling to heal his soul. Years ago, he was told that a young woman who had a terminal illness, and was a fan of his, would love to meet him. Jean-Marie met the fan and ended up spending a lot of time with her during the last few weeks of her life.
The experience was life-changing for him.
The authenticity of their relationship, the moments they shared, the opportunity to connect meaningfully with someone, not to mention the sadness felt upon loss, all these coalesced into something that struck at the core of what he wanted to do with his life.
Community, Connection, Growth
Over the years, Jean-Marie has continued to spend time with children affected by terminal illnesses. He is an accomplished public speaker, author, and has recently produced and hosted two seasons of “Face à la Rue,” a show on TVA that sheds light on the lives of the homeless of Montreal.
In our sit-down, Jean-Marie walks us through sharing moments with people with terminal illnesses and why he feels privileged to live this experience. He talks to us about meeting the homeless on the streets of Montreal and how they’ve had a big impact on his own worldview. He also tells us about how he approached pitching a show about homelessness to a major television network (TVA), as well as what he has learned through his interactions with Matthieu Ricard and His Holiness the Dalai Lama.
Here is Jean-Marie Lapointe with the SpiritBros!
Want to spend some more time with Jean-Marie?
[4:50] On his friendship with Matthieu Ricard.
[9:35] On learning humility through his interactions with His Holiness the Dalai Lama and Matthieu Ricard.
[11:30] Jean-Marie’s recipe for showing up with consistency.
[14:12] What thread moves through all of Jean-Marie’s projects?
[18:05] “Sharing is happiness.”
[19:10] On his first encounter with someone in palliative care.
[22:35] What were the challenges of holding space with someone going through the final weeks of her life?
[24:40] “La mort ferme les yeux du mourant mais ouvre les yeux du vivant.”
[29:20] On the journey of accompanying one through the process of dying.
[33:40] On how authentically connecting with others can help one avoid being overrun by their ego.
[36:10] On his experience making the show, “Face à la Rue,” which documents the lives of the homeless of Montreal.
[36:15] “You just need to look into the eyes of the other person.”
[42:35] Where the idea for “Face à la Rue” came from, and how it was pitched to TVA.
[48:10] On how the show has been received.
[49:35] “We need to change the way we look at these people. We need to see them as full human beings, not half-human beings.”
[54:40] One of the stories that stands out for Jean-Marie over his two seasons on Face A La Rue.