Association of Lutheran Church Musicians

February 1, 2021 e-newsletter
Dear Friends,

As I watched the Presidential inauguration in recent days, I found myself reflecting on the past year. In a way, we experienced many “inaugural” events in that year. We had formal beginnings: new projects, ways of living, learning and following scientific developments, working with each other, working for each other, redefining what had become commonplace worship traditions. New things often happen as reactions to what we may be experiencing in our lives.

At the same time, we have spent nearly a year in reflection. We are reflecting on who we are as a society, how we interact with one another, how we fulfill Christ’s plan, our tolerances, our hopes, and our fears. Reflections can be a beacon of light, clouded with complexity and fear, and accentuated with hope for the future.

Ash Wednesday is just 16 days away. We mark the beginning of a period of penitence and preparation. A time of “reflection,” if you will. A time where we reflect on our faith. A time where we continue our reflection of so many things that have become a part of our every day lives since last March.

In all this, one thing remains constant: the love of Christ. My hope is that in all actions we might be reflective of the love of Christ, which is never ending. As your ALCM board and staff continue work together, it is our hope that all we do will reflect that love. Thank you for your continued support in that endeavor.

May your Lenten journey be full of reflections that lead to new beginnings that reflect Christ’s love.

Kevin Barger
ALCM President
ALCM Virtual Easter Hymn
with Customizable Stanza 3
"Jesus Christ is Risen Today"

Kevin J. Hildebrand, arranger

Available for use beginning Thursday, March 25th.
ALCM members may request a customized version that includes only the videos from their church members to appear during stanza 3.

All ALCM members, friends, and choirs are invited to submit vocal and instrumental recordings for the virtual Easter hymn. Recordings may be submitted February 11 – 26. More information to come!

Made possible through the generous financial support of Mark and Kathy Helge.
Lenten Resources in ALCM Publications

In a few weeks, the church begins its Lenten journey by observing Ash Wednesday (February 17, 2021). As you continue to plan worship for Lent and Holy Week during these challenging times, consider browsing previous issues of CrossAccent and In Tempo. How might you use or adapt the wisdom of pastors and musicians who have written about the season? Though not an exhaustive list, here are a few suggested readings:
  • Kevin Barger, “Subsisting Through the Lenten Season: Nine Tips for the Church Musician,” In Tempo 2018, no. 1, pp. 1–3
  • Jennifer Phelps, “A Covenant: Stewardship of Self during the Seasons of Lent and Easter,” In Tempo 2018, no. 1, pp. 5–6
  • Karen S. Eddinger, “Lenten and Easter Services in a Pandemic: One Church Musician’s Perspective,” In Tempo 2020, no. 2, pp. 6–7
  • Carla Waterman, “To Lament Is to Hope: An Antidote to Despair,” In Tempo 2020, no. 3, pp. 1–4
  • Cheryl Dieter, “Ostinato of the Soul,” In Tempo 2015, no. 2, p. 5
  • Stephen Rosebrock, “Service Planning Ideas for Ash Wednesday,” CrossAccent Vol. 21, no. 3 (November 2013), pp. 5–7
  • Susan Palo Cherwien, “Return to the Lord: The Journey of Lent,” In Tempo 2016, no. 1, pp. 10–11
  • Kevin Hildebrand, “Lord, Have Mercy: Singing the Kyrie in the Season of Lent,” In Tempo 2015, no. 1, pp. 4–5
  • Liv Larson Andrews, “Deep Calls to Deep: Using Simple Refrains in Lenten Worship,” In Tempo 2017, no. 1, p. 9
  • Andrew Paul Fredel, “Choral and Assembly Song for Lent,” In Tempo 2016, no. 1, pp. 8–9
And if you’ve recycled past issues, shared copies with colleagues and friends, or are new to ALCM, remember that the Members Area contains a downloadable and searchable archive for both journals.
Your copy should address 3 key questions: Who am I writing for? (Audience) Why should they care? (Benefit) What do I want them to do here? (Call-to-Action)

Create a great offer by adding words like "free" "personalized" "complimentary" or "customized." A sense of urgency often helps readers take an action, so think about inserting phrases like "for a limited time only" or "only 7 remaining!"
ALCM 2021 Webinar Series
Webinars in 2021 are offered in four separate series. Each series may be purchased individually (one series is actually free) or you may purchase a full-year webinar package (at a reduced rate!) that includes automatic registration for all sixteen webinars throughout the year.

You may register at any time through 2021 and receive recordings of the live webinars which are completed. In 2022 the webinars will revert to the regular price of $25 members/$39 nonmembers per webinar.

All webinars are on Fridays at 2:00 pm Eastern, unless otherwise noted.

Check out the February webinar below!
ALCM Friday Webinar for February
How to Commission New Works for Your Parish: It’s easier than you think!

February 26, 2:00 pm Eastern

Whether you are looking for a special way to commemorate a milestone event in the life of your congregation, or if you would like to have your congregation become a regular patron of the arts, Scott Hyslop will demonstrate that it is easier than you might think!

NOTE: If you have already registered for the Spring Webinar Series or the Full Year Series, do not register again. You will receive a link to the webinar in the morning on the day of the webinar.
Scott Hyslop
Director of Parish Worship
St. Lorenz Lutheran Church
Frankenmuth, MI
And after the February 26 webinar . . .

What are the top reasons people give for attending a church music conference? Some people look forward to being inspired by engaging speakers. Some want to learn a new skill or hone an existing one. Many of us love the thrill of powerful liturgical and musical experiences with a large group of enthusiastic and full-throated singers. But far and away, the one thing that people look forward to most is a chance to reconnect with old friends and make new ones. Even outside of pandemic times, many of us feel somewhat isolated as leaders of the church’s song. We spend long hours planning, selecting, and practicing music in isolation. Often there are very few others in our local communities who really “get” what it is that we do. When we come to a conference, we join a community in which we aren’t alone, and we can once again feel part of the larger picture of our important work.
ALCM has put together a wonderful series of webinars for us to learn from and enjoy throughout 2021. See above how to register for and attend those, either in real time or to watch at your convenience. Your conference planning committee will now be adding that all-important social connection. On Friday, February 26 at 3:00 pm Eastern time, join me and other ALCM colleagues for a social hour on Zoom immediately after that day’s webinar with Scott Hyslop on Commissioning New Works for Your Parish. Think of this time as a lunch table conversation at a conference (or afternoon tea, or even happy hour, depending on your time zone and preference!) We may spend some time reflecting on the webinar, I may have a question or two for conversation, or talk could turn to … well, almost anything! We will break into smaller groups for easier conversation as needed. We all know Zoom isn’t quite the same as real-life, but if our first try on February 26 is successful, we will continue these conversations after more of the webinars in coming months.
There is no cost for these Zoom conversations, and the link will be separate from the one you use for the webinar—there is no need to have attended the webinar in order to attend the social time! Watch for the link as the date comes closer, and I’ll look forward to seeing you and chatting with you online!

Tim Getz
2023 Conference Chair
2021 Membership Directory
This is a great time to invite your friends to be an ALCM member. The deadline to be in the directory has been extended. Memberships received by February 5 will be included in the 2021 Membership Directory. Please invite your friends and colleagues to visit today or surprise them with a membership gift at!
ALCM Thanks Intern Ann Ambach

ALCM has been privileged to be part of the St. Olaf College Winter Remote Internship Program. On February 12, St. Olaf senior Ann Ambach will wrap up an ALCM internship she began on November 30. Ann is a soprano in the St. Olaf Choir and a member of the St. Olaf Handbell Choir. She is a psychology major with a management studies concentration who plans to pursue a career in arts management. For ALCM, Ann built the newest member benefit digital ALCM hymn festival recordings web pages, added thousands of new contacts to our database for use in marketing, and worked on development research identifying potential future major contributors. Our thanks to St. Olaf for making this internship possible. A very fortunate arts organization will be lucky to have Ann on their staff in the near future!
Volunteer Position Opening:
CrossAccent Reviews Editor

After faithfully serving as the book review editor for CrossAccent since 2008, ALCM member Paul Grime would like to pass the baton (or quill?) to a new volunteer willing to serve in this role. In a nutshell, the reviews editor coordinates the reviews of books, recordings, and other professional development resources published in CrossAccent. A full position description can be found here.

Kyries & Glorias

Kyries (prayer concerns) and Glorias (thanksgivings) are posted in the members area and on the following page on the ALCM website. The following recent Kyries and Glorias have been submitted by ALCM members.

In memoria:

Carl Schalk
Scott Weidler
B. Janice Stamey
John Krueger
Elizabeth Gotsch
Marillyn Freeman

ALCM members are invited to submit Kyries and Glorias following the link in the members area of the website. Non-members may contact the ALCM office at with information for posting.
New Member Benefit: ALCM Recordings for Listening
ALCM members have a new member benefit: all of the ALCM recordings are now available for listening. Log in to the members area of the website and follow the link on that page.

Physical CDs (except the sold out John Ferguson “When In Our Music” CD) are still available for purchase in the Marketplace.

A list of ALCM member-led 
Sunday worship streams & recordings is available at:

To be added, please email information to: