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Police bid bittersweet farewell to retiring chaplain (5 photos)

'He will be missed for his “laid back” and approachable demeanour,' say Timmins Police

It was a bittersweet day at the Timmins Police Service as officers bid farewell to their retiring force chaplain, Monsignor Pat Lafleur.

His kind and gentle demeanour served him well as spiritual advisor and steadfast provider of emotional support to Timmins Police officers and to a larger degree, the entire community.

Information was gathered from varied sources as part of farewell tribute ceremony (Covid compliant) held outdoors in front of the Timmins Police station.

Monsignor Pat Lafleur was born in Elk Lake, Ontario but grew up primarily in Haileybury with his brothers and sisters as part of very large family.

Before entering the priesthood, Monsignor Pat worked at various jobs including as a janitor at the Haileybury hospital, while completing his university studies and successfully completed teacher’s college and worked with children with learning and behavioral challenges for 8 years with distinction.

He also worked as an accountant at a bank and became a rather accomplished drummer (the Rolling Stones never took advantage of his skills)

Monsignor Pat was ordained as a priest on May 30th, 1987 and began his ministry at the Nativity parish (former) in Timmins before eventually assuming the reigns at St-Anthony de Padua parish in Timmins.

He successfully attained the designation of “monsignor” in 2016.

His rectory staff are extremely sad to see him go, as are the members of the Timmins Police Service.

He will be missed for his “laid back” and approachable demeanour and will undoubtedly be remembered for his tireless work with marriage encounter, the parish choir, and a host of other note-able achievements, too numerous to list.

In retirement, Monsignor Pat will be able to work on his slice at the golf course, cheer on his beloved Toronto Maple Leafs and carry on with his musical pursuits.

Monsignor Pat is a genuine believer in the value of socializing and the benefits of teamwork.

Lunch and other functions, both formal and informal, with his rectory staff, was a daily requirement so that issues did not worsen or become more severe than they had to be.

The Timmins Police Service will forever be in his debt for his tireless service and constant availability for matters big and small.

He was at the forefront and well ahead of his time in terms of being unwaveringly committed to mental health in the workplace.

Police officers, on occasion, see people at their worst or when they are facing dire situations.

His compassionate and homespun demeanour assisted those in need and the officers attending to dreadful situations as well.

Throughout his tenure as force chaplain, and as a spiritual counsellor, and as a community leader,   he continued to serve his municipality, his parish, and the Timmins Police Service.

The Timmins Police bestowed a few trinkets of appreciation and an open door invitation for him to visit when COVID allows as he is always welcome.