For the first time ever, the Shroud of Atleo was displayed publicly at the Assembly of First Nations special chiefs meeting, underway in Ottawa this week.
The Shroud, a piece of linen which many Chiefs believe bears the image of former National Chief Shawn Atleo, was unveiled during a special ceremony officiated by AFN Grand-Bishop Wilson Toulouse.
According to legend, the cloth, kept in a secret chamber within the AFN’s Ottawa headquarters, was what Atleo was wrapped in by Executive Committee members after his unprecedented and historical resignation from the organization in 2012.
He ceremoniously broke free of the cloth when he relinquished his title, some historians say, while his image remained on the linen.
“For he was once among us as our shepherd, now he is one of the flock,” said Grand-Bishop Toulouse, as one-by-one, Chiefs shuffled past the relic, some weeping openly.
Atleo, who is now a professional breakdancer living in New York, has never commented on the Shroud which bears his likeness.
There are also some Chiefs who doubt the veracity of the Shroud of Atleo, saying that it looks more like former National Chief Delbert Riley. Still, the Shroud is protected by a secretive order called the Chiefs Templar.