Fr Andrew Doohan was born in 1968 in the small northern New South Wales town of Casino, some thirty minutes drive from Lismore. Andrew is the eldest of the seven children of Tony and Tricia, and was educated in Casino at the local Catholic primary and high schools before completing his Higher School Certificate in 1985 at Casino High School.
Following secondary school, Andrew worked for a number of years in the banking and finance industry, both locally and in Sydney, before discerning a possible call to ordained ministry. After much prayer and conversation, Andrew approached the Bishop of Lismore.
In 1992, having been accepted as a student for the Diocese of Lismore, Andrew began his formation and academic study at St Patrick’s College, Manly, the provincial seminary for New South Wales. He graduated with the degree of Bachelor of Theology after the first three years of his formation and study, before continuing his preparation for ordination and commencing his studies for the degree of Master of Theology.
At the end of 1995, Andrew’s fourth year of formation, the seminary moved from Manly to the Sydney suburb of Homebush, and was renamed as the Good Shepherd Seminary. Andrew’s formation and academic study continued in this new location, though the move away from the beachside to the inner city was a difficult transition.
Following the first year in the new seminary setting, Andrew discerned that it was not yet the time to continue towards candidacy and possible ordination. Making the difficult decision to leave formation, Andrew worked in a number of Church related roles for eight years, while also completing his studies for the degree of Master of Theology, achieving a Graduate Certificate in Pastoral Counselling Skills, and completing the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts (Liturgy).
By 2003, Andrew had discerned that ordained ministry was where he was being called to, and he approached the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle to continue his journey of formation. Rather than returning to seminary formation, Andrew undertook a parish based placement commencing in October 2004 in the Parish of East Lake Macquarie located just south of the city of Newcastle. This placement extended for just short of two years before, on 30 August 2006, Andrew was ordained as Deacon for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. By gracious permission of the then Bishop of Maitland-Newcastle, Andrew’s diaconal ordination was celebrated in his home town of Casino.
Andrew exercised his diaconal ministry in the Parish of East Lake Macquarie for seven months before being ordained as Priest on 9 February 2007 in Sacred Heart Cathedral, Hamilton, the Cathedral Church of the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle.
Following ordination as priest, Andrew has served in a number of parishes across the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle: as Assistant Priest in the Parish of Raymond Terrace (and serving Bulahdelah Parish as well), as Assistant Priest in the Parish of Singleton (and also serving Branxton Parish), as Parish Priest of Forster Tuncurry, as Parish Priest of Inner Newcastle, and most recently as a member of the Clergy Team for the City Pastoral Region. In addition to his role in the City Pastoral Region, Andrew is currently the Rector and Dean of the Cathedral.
Andrew has also served in a number of Diocesan roles, including that of Master of Ceremonies, as a member of the Bishop’s Council of Priests, the College of Consultors, the Council for Mission, and as a member of the Trustees of the Roman Catholic Church for the Diocese of Maitland-Newcastle. In 2018, Andrew was asked to serve as Vicar General to Bishop Bill Wright.
Andrew enjoys reading and writing, landscape and architectural photography, and singing in his spare time. He remains passionate about liturgical and sacramental theology, as well as the praxis of liturgy in the contemporary Church.