Volunteer Opportunities

Abbey Church

A sacred space for prayer, volunteering in the Abbey Church requires respect and observance for the space and its role in the community. Attention to sacred space has often provided many through the centuries with an intimate meditative prayer experience, offering quite, attention to detail, and presence. Welcoming both long-term and short-term volunteers, opportunities include:

Environment Assistant

  •     Light cleaning
  •     Organizing music
  •     Watering plants

Sacristan assistant
Music Librarian


Abbey Gift Shop

Saint John’s Abbey Gift Shop exists as an outlet for arts and crafts items created by the monks. The shop is open from 10 am to 2 pm Monday through Saturday and from 11:30 am to 12 pm on Sunday.  The Gift Shop is in need of volunteer attendants who would be willing to take a 2 hour shift once a week. To volunteer, contact Eileen Haeg at 320-363-3304 or email AbbeyVolunteers@csbsju.edu



Open to both long-term and short-term volunteers, opportunities in the Abbey Archives places you in the heart of Saint John's history. Responsibilities include:


  •     Sorting materials
  •     Creating files
  •     Scanning photos and slides 


Several members of the monastic community have devoted a great deal of effort perfecting a variety of craft skills. Need for volunteers varies greatly, as does the nature of the project, but often includes: 

  • Assisting with candle making
  • Assisting with card making
  • Assisting with preserving and pickling garden produce

Data Assistant

Department: Abbey Cemetery Office

Brief Summary of Assignment: proof read and upload obituaries to the Abbey Cemetery website.

Time Commitment: flexible; varies with availability of information.

Responsibilities: proof read submitted obituaries for individuals who are buried in the Saint John the Baptist Parish section of the Abbey Cemetery and upload the information to the Cemetery web site.

Skills and Qualifications:

Ability to recognize and correct spelling and grammatical errors;
Attentive to details such as date discrepancies.
Computer skills to include ability to update information on the website.
Willingness to maintain confidentiality of information.

Team Leader: Josie Stang

Location, working space, equipment, etc. Can be performed from home on own computer with internet access. Team leader is available for questions.

Any questions: contact Eileen Haeg at 363-3304 or email AbbeyVolunteers@csbsju.edu.


The Abbey Guesthouse offers the Benedictine ministry of hospitality to the Abbey's visitors, following the Rule's instruction to "treat all visitors as Christ." Within this ministry, responsibilities may include:


  •     Room check
  •     Library organizer
  •     Light cleaning

Liturgical Press

Founded by Saint John's in 1926, the Liturgical Press is among the leading Catholic publishers in the nation. Helping to express and spread the faith, opportunities include:

Coordinating prison subscriptions to "Give Us This Day"
Assisting with book displays at conferences

Office Assistant

Volunteering in one or more of the different offices here at Saint John's will include:

  • Filing
  • Data entry
  • Errands
  • Computer work
  • Desktop publishing
  • Casual photographer 

Abbey offices currently requesting volunteer help:

Oblate Office: Desktop Publishing

Development Office: Office AssistantDevelopment Photographer

Cemetery Office: Research/Writer

Abbey Office: Computer tutor

Outdoor Work

The many opportunities for outdoor work around the Saint John's campus are of course seasonal. Options during warmer weather include tending to:



Retirement Center

A popular opportunity for new volunteers and experienced alike, the retirement center offers the chance to meet and converse with retired members of the Saint John's monastic community. While with the community, you may be asked to:

Drive/accompany monks to medical appointments
Resident Helper
    Read to residents
    Restock supplies
    Assist with personal correspondence
Visit the community 
    Entertain (if you are so inclined)
Gardening partner
Barber (experienced)

Sacristy/Tailor Shop

Special projects


An artistic and functional pursuit founded with the Abbey itself, volunteers both experienced and new to woodworking will enjoy the environment, leaned talents, and products of this opportunity. Opportunities include:

General shop work
Operating laser engraver