Padre Michelle Staples was born and raised in the United Kingdom. Following service as a British Police Officer and a Civil Servant, she arrived in Canada and shortly thereafter commenced studies with Saint Paul University. Upon graduation, Padre Staples was ordained a priest of the Diocese of Ottawa where she served as curate to St. Matthias Church, and then rector of St. Mary's, Russell. In addition to her duties as parish priest, she served for 10 years on the Anglican Roman Catholic Dialogue (ARC Canada), acted as post ordination training coordinator for the diocese, served as a delegate to General Synod, a member of Faith Worship and Ministry for two terms, and as a member of the worship committee for General Synod 2003. She was appointed Canon Ecumenist for the Diocese of Ottawa in January 2001.
Joining the military in 2003, Padre Staples was posted to Greenwood NS during which time she served with 14 Air Maintenance Squadron, 404, 405 and 415 Squadron. Promoted to the rank of Major and posted in 2007 to Canadian Forces Base Petawawa, she served with the Canadian Special Operations Regiment and 427 Special Operations Squadron. During this time she provided ministry in diverse locations world-wide, working within a multi disciplinary team to provide Ministry of Presence to Canadian Special Operations Forces Command personnel and their families at home and abroad.
In the summer of 2010, she was posted as the Brigade Chaplain for 1 Canadian Mechanized Brigade Group as the Senior Team Lead for 17 chaplains serving in Edmonton and Shilo. In November 2011 she was installed as a Canon of the church with the Anglican Military Ordinariate.
Promoted and posted to the Royal Canadian Navy in August of 2012, Padre Staples assumed the role of Maritime Atlantic Formation Chaplain, and in November 2012 received the Queen's Diamond Jubilee Medal for services to the members and families of the Canadian Armed Forces. In August of 2013 she was appointed Command Chaplain for the Royal Canadian Navy, and is currently residing in Ottawa.