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2013 Atlantic Journalism Awards Finalists


Date Aired or Published March 10, 2013
Media outlet where first aired or published: The Chronicle Herald
Name of Program: Herald Magazine
If co-produced, list partner: Beverley Ware; Christian Laforce
Location: Halifax
List awards, grants:
Running time (TV/Radio):

Short explanation of the story and how it developed:

I came across the story of Louis Quennelle while pursuing a different idea. I learned the priest at St. John’s Anglican Church in Lunenburg had been a Roman Catholic priest who many years earlier had fallen in love with a woman. He left his denomination so that he could marry but wanted to remain a clergyman, so he became an Anglican priest. But in the course of asking others some background information about Michael Mitchell before interviewing him, I learned that the assistant priest is also an Air Canada flight attendant married to a man in the choir. Clearly, this was my story. The challenge I faced in developing the story was to ensure both Quennelle and Mitchell trusted me to handle what is still a very sensitive issue for some parishioners and those of other denominations. I wanted the story to be honest and to have true substance, and both men were willing to fully address these issues with me. The key barrier we faced was to convince Air Canada to allow us to photograph Quennelle in his uniform on an airplane or on the tarmac outside an Air Canada plane. Herald Magazine was even willing to have the photographer go on a flight with Quennelle to document him at work. However, Air Canada refused our repeated requests. In the end, Christian LaForce did a beautiful job of photographing Quennelle on their hobby farm and in his robes at the church.

Resources of the newsroom (money and time) available to complete the story:

No additional newsroom resources were required.

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