Tributes pour in for Father Joe

Tributes have been pouring in for Father Joe Williams, parish priest at St Martin de Porres Roman Catholic Church, who was found dead in his car on New Year’s day.

In spite of the fact he was missing for three days, there will be no inquest. Instead there will be a coroner’s investigation as the post mortem was inconclusive.

Among his many duties, Father Williams was a chaplain at Luton&Dunstable Hospital.

L&D spokeswoman Katrina Grant said: “He offered pastoral and spiritual support to a large number of local families, hospital patients and staff.
“In recent months he has been particularly helpful to members of the Filipino community in the aftermath of the typhoon disaster.”

Dean of Luton Monsignor Kevin McGinnell spoke movingly of losing a brother priest in such sad circumstances.

He said: “It was such a shock and very distressing.

“He was someone you could rely on, a very good colleague.”

Father Joe, 42, came to Luton in 2012. His body will be received into the church at 7pm on Wednesday, January 15, with a requiem mass celebrated by the Bishop of Northampton, the Rt Rev Peter Doyle, at 1.30pm the following day.

He will be buried at Buckfast Abbey in Devon.