DPSSS Welcomes New Chaplain to Their Ranks
|Fr. Pinné's badge number is 1818, the year in which the University was founded.|
Chris Pinné, S.J., is the only person at Saint Louis University to wear both a badge and a collar. The current chaplain for the SLU School of Law recently became the first chaplain for the Department of Public Safety and Security.
Pinné returned to St. Louis this spring following care at Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colo., after being struck by a vehicle in an early morning in May 2007. Pinné was leaving St. Francis Xavier College Church for Jesuit Hall when he was hit near the intersection of Grand and Lindell. DPSSS officers were the first to find him.
He wasn't paralyzed immediately following the accident, however, his spine deteriorated to a point that he became paralyzed from the waist down this past December
As DPSSS chaplain, Pinné will provide spiritual counseling and support to members of the department for issues that may arise both on and off duty. He'd also like to humanize the officers of the department and help build a bridge between the students and the officers.
"Part of our role as Jesuits, especially at a university, is to let everybody know that they're important," Pinné said. "My goal would be that the people who work for DPSSS know that there's a least one Jesuit who thanks them, respects them for what they do and is there for them as a chaplain if he or she would ever need me."
|Fr. Chris Pinné in his office in Morrissey Hall. Pinné has recently been named the first chaplain for the Department of Public Safety and Security. Photo by Danielle Lacey|
Pinné said he'd even like to accompany officers on patrol a few times if he could.
"Riding in the car would probably be a bit awkward," he admitted. But if given the opportunity, Pinné stated that he'd like to accompany officers who patrol either on foot or on personal mobility vehicles.
Pinné was invited to serve as the department's chaplain by Roland Corvington, assistant vice president and director of DPSSS, and Sgt. Pat Signorino.
According to Corvington, SLU is only one of three Jesuit instuitions to offer their security services a chaplain.
"The bottom line is, our officers experience the same challenges that others experience," Corvington said. "Spiritual guidance, spiritual support, helping people get through tough times, that's what we look for in a chaplain."