Father Bob is a priest, philanthropist and an active user of Twitter who does great work both through his church and through the web. He kindly took some time out to answer some of our questions regarding his various projects and his views on the important role of funeral homes. You can learn more about Father Bob, and his foundation, by following him on Twitter @FatherBob
Q1. Could you please start by telling us a little about what it is that you do? What does the average day look like for Father Bob?
The first item on my bucket list is to “Wake Up” one morning at a time. I live by choice, on the work premises, and go to bed late after being on duty with the four members of the foundation staff, admins, and the outreach team. My weekends give me the time to think about the foundation’s strategy and tactics. And also, to perform as a celebrant at the local Sunday evening church service, weddings or christenings.
Q2. You also run the Fr Bob Maguire Foundation. Can you tell us a little about the work you do through them?
The Father Bob Maguire Foundation has evolved since my initial contact with homeless, helpless & hopeless teenagers in the 1970’s and 80’s. We now run mobile food vans locally, and provide food, clothing, and reassurance from our local second premises. We favour, since 2000, early intervention, by providing scholarships for 15 local public housing teenagers to attend college.
Q3. You have a very large Twitter following at @FatherBob. How did you go about generating such a following and what do you think the value of social media is to someone in your line of work?
Twitter sprang from our being embedded in the local neighborhood. We soon realized that it was another worldwide neighborhood. So I clubbed the www(World Wide Web) with our work WWW(Wisdom, Worship, and Work).I also called it ‘The Parish Without Borders’.
Q4. On Twitter you describe yourself as ‘patron of the unloved and unlovely’; can you please shed a little light on that?
Our mission is simple – to provide material, emotional and social support to whomever, whenever and wherever necessary. Our vision is mainly to assist and to care for ALL the members in a community, regardless of their standing in society, to ensure that no one is left uncared for.
Q5. What are your views on funeral homes and cremation services and the role they play in helping families to cope with their grief and loss?
Funeral homes & cremation services are essential services for people living in a secular, humanized society. I’ve experienced many moments of redemption, good grief, and reassurance at services presided over by me at funeral homes.
Q6. Finally, do you have any other personal views on funerals, or cremation services, that you wish to share with us?
My foundation has a working relationship with several funeral homes, which are very essential to us.