Father Bob Maguire is a man of passion, creativity and humour; he is part Billy Connolly, part angry Old Testament prophet and part compassionate Mother Theresa (he would hate this categorisation). But he has a unique combination of traits and in each he is a risk taker.
He is an elusive chameleon, a man of brilliant riddles.
His life story has not been told – or rather, he has told it in random pieces, for people to put together like a jigsaw puzzle. Sue Williams is the first person to attempt to capture his whole story.
For 39 years, Father Bob was parish priest of Sts Peter and Paul church in South Melbourne, until his boss forced him to retire. From this base, and through his foundation, he worked, hands on, with the homeless, sick, criminal and addicted. He has had successes and failures. In his own words, Father Bob sees his work as a 'life-long attempt to empower teens, twenty-somethings and even children to be their unique selves … unique contributors in recreating the world and the cosmos'. He believes that the Father Bob Maguire Foundation needs to be 'urgent, sensitive to young people's fragile dreams and flexible in responding to young people of every class and creed'.
At 78, Father Bob shows no signs of slowing down, giving in, or shutting up.
About the Author
Sue Williams is the author of a number of bestselling books, including Women of the Outback, Outback Spirit and Getting There – Journeys of an Accidental Adventurer.
Her other books include Peter Ryan: The Inside Story; Mean Streets, Kind Heart: The Father Chris Riley Story; No Time For Fear – the story of shark attack survivor Paul de Gelder – as well as And Then The Darkness, about the disappearance of the British backpacker Peter Falconio, which was shortlisted for the prestigious Golden Dagger Award in the UK for the true crime book of the year, and the Ned Kelly Awards in Australia.
Also an award-winning journalist, Sue was born in England, and worked in print and television in the UK and New Zealand. She spent many years travelling around the world before falling in love with Australia in 1989. Since settling here, she has written for many of Australia's leading newspapers and magazines.
In stark contrast to the Outback, Sue's apartment is in the most densely populated part of Australia – Sydney's Kings Cross – where she lives with her partner, writer Jimmy Thomson.