A Tampa priest that died earlier this week committed suicide, according to reports.
A memorial near the altar at St. Joseph’s Parish honors Father Vladimir Dziadek.
According to police, a maintenance man discovered Father Vladimir at the bottom of a staircase along with a broken belt in the church office on Monday morning.
The Hillsborough County Medical Examiner says the cause of death is a suicide by hanging.
Nobody yet knows exactly why Father Vladimir committed suicide, but a Catholic Church spokesman says the 57-year-old priest had historically struggled with depression.
Parishioner Gleyvis Fernandez says her friend attended Father Vladimir’s last mass where he talked about death during his homily.
“Maybe he knew he was going to die because the mass was all about when people die and pass to another world, like a better place,” said Fernandez.
Father Vladimir served the mostly Hispanic parish for nearly three years.
Now father Carlos Jose Rojas is taking over those duties and says Vladimir was Polish and always promoted the Divine Chaplet.
“That prayer, the Divine Chaplet, asking God to have mercy,” said Father Carlos. “That is what we’re doing now. We learned that from Father Vladimir in so many beautiful ways.”
Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him…
Please keep this priest and all who love him in your prayers.