David Ford said: “His death is a sad loss to all of Northern Ireland.
“His important role in the talks aimed at securing a loyalist ceasefire is an indication of the courage of the man. He deserves fulsome praise for his work with these unpredictable and volatile paramilitary groups.
“I want to pass on my condolences to his family at this distressing time for them. Roy’s faith led him in this important contribution to our peaceful new society, and he will be forever remembered for his role in the peace process.”