Father Bob, a Christian in the truest sense of the word. Lover of God. Lover of humanity. Servant to the poor and needy. Radical. Natural comedian. Disturber of the status quo. Legend.

What an absolute delight it was to join Father Bob and John Safran on their  show on Triple J, Sunday Nights with Safran. The second edition of A Life of Unlearning had just been released.

Father Bob passed away  19 April 2023

John Safran’s tribute:

What was Father Bob like privately? Somehow kinder and funnier than he was publicly. We somehow ‘fought’ nonstop from the moment the record button was pressed in 2004, through documentaries, radio shows and books, right through to filming this year, but we never once fought. More than being kind in broad brushstrokes, he was kind in small ways. When an elderly congregant couldn’t catch the Collingwood matches, he organised tapes from Channel 7 that he would slip to her, along with the Eucharist wafer, during communion. Bob was wise as Buddha. He attracted all manner of outcasts, not all pleasant, but he was open hearted to those people too. I asked him how did this and he said, “You don’t have to like people to love them.” I send condolences and compassion to Bob’s niece Peta who looked after him in his difficult final stretch, and to all his family and friends. When filming, it was an editor’s nightmare to cut from the shot before I’d burst out laughing each time Bob finished a sentence. I never thought Bob would ever stop making me laugh, but with the sad news of today, he finally has.

x John Safran

Father Bob with members of the cast of The Lion, The Bitch and The Closet, which was performed as part of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and raised money for the Open Family charity.CREDIT:MICHAEL RAYNER