Too often in 2022, I found myself typing up an article to commemorate a police officer whose career was cut short by an offender's cowardly act of violence. Thus, when I have an opportunity to celebrate a police officer who is on a journey full of hope and promise, I seize the moment and joyfully begin to type up the story.
In December, newspaper reporter Terry O'Neil contacted me through our CPCA website requesting I comment on the importance of having a chaplain serve a police department. Through further correspondence, I learned about Vancouver PD's 23-year veteran police Detective/Constable Marty Cayer's successful journey in becoming a Catholic Deacon serving at Christ the Redeemer Parish in West Vancouver. This is just the beginning of the story. With a heart to serve his policing peers, Marty is now in active pursuit of becoming a police chaplain in service to the Vancouver PD.
Although Marty and I serve different denominations, our journeys share some striking similarities: the pursuit of a policing career followed by the later pursuit of God through service in a church as a Deacon; Marty worked as a Specialist in the VPD Forensic Identification Unit before transferring to a detectives unit, while I continue as a Specialist in the BPS FIU; my service to God within an organized church branched outwards and later led to my current position of a police chaplain, which is Marty's quest for 2023. Historically in Canada, police officers of faith backgrounds have retired from active policing prior to engaging in police chaplaincy. However, I'm excited to share that history is turning a new page to embrace active police officers who serve also as volunteer chaplains. This is the norm for chaplaincy at WPS, BPS, and hopefully soon at VPD. There is great value to having faith leaders from the community as police chaplains, and equally there is great value to sworn police officers serving their peers as their chaplain.
Here is the newspaper article published Jan 10, 2023 celebrating the journey of VPD Det/Cst Marty Cayer. It gives us something wonderful to celebrate and provides an opportunity as police chaplains to lift this officer and his family up in prayer to see the plans and purposes of God fulfilled through his life. Marty and I have connected and I'm excited to support his journey to police chaplaincy.