A community is mourning the loss of a church minister who died this week after a heart operation.
The Rev Paul Breeze, minister at Trinity Church in Rawdon, failed to recover from the serious heart operation on Saturday and died peacefully on Monday.
His sudden death, in his early 60s, has shocked friends and colleagues who described the popular churchman as down to earth and affable.
Mr Breeze came to Trinity Church in 2011. Before that he had been minister at Saltaire United Reformed Church. He was married and had two sons.
Yorkshire United Reformed Church Moderator Kevin Watson paid tribute to Mr Breeze. “He had a tremendous sense of humour, he got on with people and helped people to find spirituality in the ordinary,” he said.
“He was very affable. He certainly wasn’t stuffy but was down to earth,” he said.
“He had a tremendous sense of humour, he got on with people and helped people to find spirituality in the ordinary.”
He added: “He was very keen to reach out and engage with the community. He was not in the pulpit - to him the church was about getting out and meeting with the community.”
Guiseley Methodist Church minister the Rev Nick Baker said: “We are all deeply shocked. We are obviously praying for his wife Kate and for the children, and for the people at Trinity.”
Paul Breeze came from a Methodist family in Liverpool and he joined the congregational church in his teens.
His working life began in industry and commerce before he moved to London to work in a children’s home. In 1983, after eight years at the home and a year after marrying, he entered training college for the ministry at Cambridge.
He became a minister in inner city Birmingham before moving to Dronfield, Saltaire and Rawdon.
During his time at Saltaire he described the importance of the uniting and reforming function of the Church and of working together with other denominations.