Volunteering Opportunities – Volunteers are welcome

Volunteers play an important part in the day to day operation of St Mary’s Cathedral.

From tour guides to readers to staffing the Cathedral shop, it is dedicated volunteers who help make everything tick.

Jennifer Foo (Special Liturgies Officer) not only looks after the Cathedral events, magnificent weddings, special Masses and Baptisms but she also manages the vital volunteer team.

For further information about volunteering, please call Jennifer Foo on 02 9220 0453 or email:  jennifer.foo@stmaryscathedral.org.au

The key areas where volunteers play an important role include the Cathedral shop, bell ringers, ushers, readers and tour guides.

Jennifer coordinates the various volunteer groups within the Cathedral precinct ensuring that volunteers feel appreciated and well informed while also attracting new candidates. She is focused on obtaining a new generation of volunteers to become engaged with the Cathedral. An expression of interest was sent in October for people interested in volunteering across the range of Cathedral duties.

The Cathedral shop has more than 20 people on their books and there are more than 10 ushers required at times at a weekly Sunday Mass. “We have eight readers at present with more to be inducted in that group,” she says.

Jennifer says the Cathedral is now expanding its volunteer program. “To increase our engagement with the public and community, we are looking to call for volunteer interest every six months rather than just once a year.

“With our recent call for expressions of interest, we had an excellent response from the younger community.

“We can juggle the duties around a volunteer’s schedule. We have people from the medical and corporate fields so their volunteer duties can fit in with their busy schedules, either weekday or on the weekend. Often for weekday roles, our retired volunteers have more time to spare or people who live in the neighbourhood can assist with an early morning Mass.”

According to Jennifer, the most satisfying part of her job is engaging with people, not only the clients who are holding an event within the Cathedral but the volunteers. “I love the people aspect.”

“Our approach is very inclusive. Volunteers are not getting paid and they are giving their personal time so we include them within our bigger team dynamic. We want to retain our volunteers and ask for their continued service, whether short or long term.  We have some people in the Cathedral shop and ushers who have been volunteering for 10+ years and some of our tour guides for over five years.

“I have been a volunteer with other not-for-profit organisations so understand what’s involved with this role. We need to help our volunteers stay engaged and fresh in their roles.  Late last year, we started our first volunteer newsletter which helps keep everyone updated with happenings around the Cathedral precinct.

“Volunteers support the Cathedral and we want them to benefit from key information for their roles and responsibilities on a regular basis.”

Why volunteer?

  • You may wish to serve St Mary’s Cathedral as an extension of your faith.
  • You may have a special appreciation and love of the building, its history and architecture.
  • You may enjoy assisting thousands of people every day who visit here.
  • You may wish to become part of the wider Cathedral community and make new friends.
  • You may wish to gain work experience or build up your CV by volunteering for the Cathedral.
  • Whatever your reason, you can find your own reward through volunteering at St Mary’s.