Father Bob “was never not funny”

Father Bob “was never not funny”

Yesterday the late Father Bob Maguire was posthumously made an Officer of the Order of Australia.

Maguire’s media appearances were often alongside filmmaker John Safran.

In 2004 Safran explored Catholicism with Father Bob in the SBS series John Safran vs God. By 2005 would they were co-hosting Speaking in Tongues.

They would go on to co-host Sunday Night Safran on Triple J in an unlikely pairing of the senior Catholic priest and the young Jewish satirist.

Safran recently told TV Tonight, the chemistry was creative instinct without overthinking the idea.

“The troll in me thought ‘Something will work here’ and it just did,” he said.

It was a friendship that lasted until Maguire’s passing in 2023.

In addition to the Father Bob Foundation, Safran says his legacy not just one of social justice but humour and kindness.

“His spirit and how happy he made people, and particularly like people who’d had bad experiences with the church. I had so many of them, in comments and personally, (saying that) he really helped them out. Just by the fact that he was so funny and good-natured, but he was still from the church,” he said.

“He gave so many people so much comfort, and that’s just based on people contacting me, let alone people contacting him. He was so funny. I can’t tell you how funny.

“I would ring him up… he’d pick up the phone, and every time in the first 10 seconds, he’d say something hilarious that would just get me laughing. He was never not funny.

“I can’t even think of like a sentence where he didn’t make me laugh.”