A Sussex priest died in a house fire last Friday. Fr Patrick Emmanuel, 49, was overcome by smoke inhalation in a blaze, which ripped through the top floor of the parish house of the Immaculate Conception of Our Lady church, in Peacehaven, East Sussex. He was rushed by ambulance to the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton, but pronounced dead on arrival. Mass was held in the parish on Maundy Thursday for Fr Emmanuel. The service was to have been the first of the Easter Tridium events. Instead parishioners gathered to pay their respects to the popular priest who had been with them for two years. Fr Emmanuel came to Britain 20 years ago, after he received death threats from soldiers for his religious work in his native country, Sri Lanka. Among those to pay tribute to him was Fr David Foley, Dean of Brighton and Hove, who said: "Fr Emmanuel was a good-hearted man who was highly educated. But more than that, he was a really nice man."
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