Mission Docents

Upcoming Mission Docent Training Dates in 2019/2020:
Dates: TBD
Time: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
*Must complete a Volunteer Application and attend a Volunteer Orientation Session prior to Docent Training.

Have you ever wondered about those people you see around the Mission with the black hats and various red & black attire? These are our Mission San Juan Docents. Docents make California history come alive for over 50,000 school children and adults each year. If you love history, have a natural curiosity, enjoy people and like sharing with others, this may be a volunteer position for you!

The Mission Docents are comprised of individuals with a strong sense of history, a passion for remembering it, and the ability to share it with others.

Mechelle Lawrence-Adams, Executive Director of Mission San Juan Capistrano, said: “Docents have the opportunity to change a student’s perspective from one that thinks history is boring to one that views history as interesting. As I still remember my 4th grade field trip to this mission, it inspired me to care about history. Unfortunately here at the Mission, we don’t have enough docents and hope that we can attract more interesting people who want to make a difference through docent work.”

In order to become one of the Mission San Juan Capistrano Docents, individuals must participate in all four of the scheduled training classes, one-on-one training with a Docent mentor, as well as complete observations of other Docent tours. The entire process can be completed within eight weeks of the first training class.

The Mission San Juan Capistrano Docents have been in existence for 28 years and has a membership of more than 100. The purpose of the Docents is to educate and inform the visitors about Mission San Juan Capistrano. Training fees are $25 per person, payable the second training session. The fee covers training materials and the first year’s membership dues. The minimum annual service requirement is 12 tours.

Docents come from many walks of life. They consist of men and women who want to share their knowledge with others. Docents are asked to conduct monthly tours and attend monthly meetings. As a group, the docents plan visits to surrounding historical sites, participate in fund raising projects and assist with special projects. The reward for helping history come alive for visitors is satisfaction of a job well done.

They narrate the history of how Mission San Juan was established and share the story of the Native Americans, Spanish padres, and the leather jackets who came to this site. The thank you letters from the many school children are a fantastic reward. It is their desire, for all who come to Mission San Juan Capistrano, to leave with a sense of marvel and awe about this amazing California story.

We invite you to complete an Application and attend a Volunteer Orientation session to learn more about ways you can get involved as a volunteer.

Volunteer Application

All Volunteer Orientation attendees must R.S.V.P. with Maureen McAndrews, Development and Volunteer Manager by email mmcandrews@missionsjc.com or by calling (949) 234-1322. Attendance at the Volunteer Orientation session is mandatory in order to be cleared to either serve or be trained in any capacity on the Mission grounds.

All applicants are required to undergo training and will be asked to follow our Code of Ethics policies.

Thank you in advance for considering to join the Mission family, a group of individuals committed to preserving the past for the future generations to come.


For further information regarding Volunteer Opportunities, please contact Maureen McAndrews, Development and Volunteer Manager:
Email: mmcandrews@missionsjc.com
Phone: (949) 234-1322