Meet the Faculty
Catherine Syms stepped into the role of Chapel Worship Leader and Religious Education Teacher at St Hilda’s School in 2015 and became Head of Faculty in 2019. British-born, Catherine has spent nine years in New Zealand as Head of Department for Religious Studies and Director of the Centre for Ethics at the Diocesan School for girls in Auckland. Catherine holds Bachelor and Masters degrees in Practical Theology from the University of Aberdeen and education qualifications from Edinburgh University.
Mr Richard Larsen holds a Bachelor of Economics from the Australian National University, a Post-Graduate Bachelor of Education from Monash University, a Graduate Diploma in Careers from Rusden College (now Deakin University) and Graduate Diplomas in each of Pastoral Counselling and Theology from Charles Sturt University.
He began work as a trainee chartered accountant in Melbourne prior to undertaking study in Education and commencing a teaching career at Mentone Grammar towards the end of 1981. In 1985, he moved to Caulfield Grammar where he worked for seven years before moving to the Gold Coast. In 15 years at All Saints Anglican School, where Richard taught Economics, Legal Studies and Accounting, he also held a number of management positions as Head of Business, Head of House and Year Level Coordinator (Years 10 and 11). Towards the end of his time at All Saints, Richard pursued his interests in Counselling and Christian Theology; subsequently, he commenced work as a teacher of Religious Education and indulged his passion for Counselling on a voluntary basis.
In 2008, Richard was appointed Head of Religious Education at St Hilda’s School and began the most professionally rewarding period of his career. He has energetically explored his interest in Theology and Religions in general, by reading widely; accordingly, he has been able to create an engaging Religious Education curriculum with the assistance of fellow professionals.
Rev Patrick Duckworth (Fr Patrick) holds a Bachelor of Arts majoring in English and History, a Bachelor of Theology and a graduate Diploma in Education. Fr Patrick trained for the priesthood in St Michael’s House in Adelaide and was ordained for the Diocese of Bendigo. The first ten years of his ministry were spent in parishes in both Victoria and South Australia. He became interested in teaching while acting as a tutor in Church History in the Flinders University Bachelor of Theology course. His first school appointment was as Chaplain to Launceston Church Grammar School. After for eleven years in Launceston, Fr Patrick and his family returned to Adelaide where he was Chaplain at St Peter’s College for another eleven years. Then followed a four year period in England where he was not only a parish priest but a visiting lecturer in Classics and Modern History at Barnsley Sixth Form College. On returning to Australia in 2014, Fr Patrick took up the position of Chaplain to All Saints’ College, Perth, Western Australia. After three years there, he began as Chaplain to St Hilda’s in January 2017 which allowed he and his wife to be closer to their growing number of grandchildren in Adelaide, Brisbane and Melbourne.