Posted On February, 26 - 2018
Twelve months as a Volunteer with WMOF2018
On a few days hotel break in Westport, where I did my first bit of translation into Irish for WMOF2018 exactly a year ago, in response to a phone call from Richard Brennan, I reflect on the many happy experiences I’ve had working with a great group of staff and volunteers in helping to prepare for this great event in Dublin in August 2018.
My main work over the past twelve months has been the translation of dozens of documents from English into Irish and proofreading documents translated by other volunteers. It has been a great learning experience in many ways including the need to use language accurately in translating sometimes difficult texts and the deeper understanding that comes from having to think carefully about the meaning of the text being translated.
I have done a lot of the work at home but I have enjoyed my almost weekly visits to the WMOF2018 office in Clonliffe Road. The type of work I have done include inputting details of Irish and worldwide dioceses, helping to process the applications of new volunteers, giving out literature in the RDS and at Bishop Nulty’s diocesan picnic in Punchestown, welcoming international delegates to a Pre-WMOF2018 conference in DCU, holding reserved seats in the Basilica in Knock for people who were taking part in the procession during the launch of the Holy Family Icon last August and recording the Irish version of the official WMOF2018 prayer.
The variation in the nature of the tasks means the job never gets boring. On every visit to the office I look forward to whatever work has to be done. Most times either Teresa or Irene has some text to be translated and if not, Richard has some task, so I always feel the two hours journey each way by train, Luas and bus and on foot is worth it. Although everybody is busy and working hard there is always time for a laugh and a bit of fun and the day never seems long enough.
I was a volunteer during the Eucharistic Congress but only during the week in the RDS where I worked in the Prayer Space and spent a lot of the time carrying things around and showing people how to get to the various locations for talks and workshops. I don’t know what I’ll have to do next August but it is a privilege to be involved in the preparation for the World Meeting of Families and I’m looking forward to whatever work I am assigned.
When I signed up to take part in the World Meeting of Families 2018 it was over a year and a half away but now we are down to seven months and I expect the pressure to mount up, but I am quite confident the team of staff and volunteers will see it through.
Don’t forget we need many more volunteers, so why not contact WMOF2018? I am sure you will not regret it!
By Niall McElwaine
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