Thank you to our volunteers

Three ladies from the Truro Cathedral volunteer Sewing Guild sat at a table sewing.

In the first week of June each year, organisations across the country celebrate the huge range of people who make a fantastic contribution through volunteering. At Truro Cathedral, we offer thanks every single day for our 200+ volunteers, but with Volunteers’ Week just around the corner, I wanted to take this opportunity to say a special ‘thank you’…

Gloria in excelsis Deo! Glory to God in the highest! Every time we have a sung Eucharist (apart from Advent and Lent, of course), we sing these words, normally in a great, choral setting by a well-known composer. The second line of the Gloria, in Latin, is et in terra pax hominibus bonae voluntatis, which means ‘and in earth peace, goodwill to all men.’ Bonae voluntatis: Good will! These are the words with which the angels greet the shepherds in the nativity story. God’s good will is shown to all people.

Of course, the word voluntatis, or ‘will, desire, intention’, is the root of the word ‘volunteer’, so when we celebrate our volunteers in the cathedral, we are echoing the angels’ words to the shepherds. God’s good will is God’s blessing, and that is exactly how we must see the offering of our volunteers.

You often hear it said that without our volunteers we simply could not get the work done, not just here in the cathedral, but in any charitable organisation. And that is undoubtedly true. But volunteering implies more than simply saying ‘I have got a couple of hours on a Tuesday afternoon, so I can help out’; it implies the willingness, the desire of the volunteer to offer themselves to the organisation in question because they believe in what that organisation stands for, and that is certainly true of our cathedral volunteers. And that, believe me, is a blessing.

Here, at the cathedral, we rely so much on our volunteers, but this is so much more than filling gaps, it is about being blessed by our volunteers because of their willingness to support and help the cathedral in its work and witness. I cannot begin to tell you how much I, as dean, appreciate this. Please accept my sincere thanks for all you do, which, above everything else, gives glory to God, as well as serving his people. Hominibus bonae voluntatis! Thank you.

The Very Rev'd Roger Bush, Dean of Truro.

For all the latest volunteering news and updates, keep an eye on the ‘News’ and ‘Get Involved’ sections of our website.