A popular priest is suspected to have ended his own life after a furious mum confronted him over allegations he had sexually abused her 13-year-old daughter.
Father Joseph Tran worked as a chaplain at several Catholic schools in Perth, Australia.
But police found the 49-year-old dead on Thursday at his home.
A coroner is now investigating the death, believed to have been suicide.
Police had launched an investigation into the allegation of child sexual abuse by a priest from a southern suburbs Catholic Church on the same day, it’s emerged.
And The West Australia says Father Tran was accused of abusing the youngster.
It reports her sickened mum had confronted him this week after the alleged abuse came to light.
The Archdiocese of Perth and the Catholic Education Office refused to comment on the abuse allegations, it says.
But pupils have expressed their sadness at Father Tran’s death.
St Francis Xavier Catholic Church, where he was parish priest, paid tribute to him.
Known by parishioners and students as “Father Joe”, the man was admired for his “humour and deep care for all”.
Sacred Heart College sent a letter to parents following the news, and said they would support students who had come to know the priest well throughout his tenure north of Perth.
“The College community is deeply saddened by his passing, and remember his compassion, humour and deep care for all,” the note said.
“The college will discuss ways of celebrating Fr Joseph’s life and will communicate this information when plans are finalised.”
When he left his role at Our Lady of the Mission Church in February last year, one parishioner said: “Father [Joe] is a man of the people. He is not up on some lofty pulpit, out of reach. But he is down here on a level with us.”
“He walks with us and shares our everyday lives with us, not just as a priest but as a friend, a companion, a guide. He gives his time freely to us and never says ‘no’.”
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