Association of Lutheran Church Musicians
July 1, 2018 e-newsletter

Greetings from Seward, Nebraska, "America's Small-Town 4th of July City."  For over 140 years, the residents of Seward have been sponsoring a Fourth of July celebration that turns our normally quiet community into a bustling hub of excitement, a celebration which lasts from sun-up past sun-down which draws more than 40,000 people to a city with a population of less than 7,000. There is so much that happens here that day, but it always begins at 7:30 am with a community prayer service at the city bandshell. I recently read a quote by President Franklin D. Roosevelt: "I ask that our people devote themselves in a continuance of prayer." Let us all take this opportunity to be reminded to pray for our country and for our leaders, as St. Paul urges us to do in I Timothy 2, "so that we may lead peaceful and quiet lives." And, if you want to experience a Fourth of July celebration to remember, stop by Seward some year!
Jeff Blersch
Director at Large

Last chance to register for the Valpo event!

The Valparaiso Hearts * Hands * Voices 4-day intensive is coming up in a few short weeks, which means deadlines for registration are fast approaching. If you have not yet registered and plan to stay in on-campus housing, we must receive your registratio n by  Friday, July 6. 

Follow these links to learn more about:

Don't miss this one-of-a-kind opportunity for practical learning and skill-building in the areas of your choice. Questions? Contact the ALCM office at or by phone at 800-624-2526.

ALCM 2019 Biennial Conference 

With keynote presentations by Susan Briehl, Robert Farlee, and Samuel Torvend. 

Would you like to use some of your continuing education money this year to finance your trip to Portland next summer? We will once again make available "pre-registration," which will allow you to pay a portion of your registration fee in 2018. Watch the August e-newsletter for more details.

Registration is open for all events!

Response to the Hearts * Hands * Voices events has been overwhelmingly positive. Rather than have the staff tell you why we think you should attend, here are a few comments from those who have already attended an event:

"A refreshing change from the fast paced, more intense conferences. Smaller groups gave everyone a chance to be part of the action."
"I appreciate both the learning aspect and the ability to make and foster connections with other musicians/pastors in the area."
"I got a half-dozen people from Northern VT to drive 3 hours each way to this event, and I'd organize that kind of response all over again tomorrow, it was so worthwhile!"
"Great job providing practical topics - that truly speak to the realities of working with a parish music program in the 21st century."

Click the links below to see details about the programs for the July and August events or click the links at the end of this article to view all upcoming events organized by date or by state - there are a lot to choose from!  
Election Results

The ALCM board of directors is pleased to announce that the following members have been elected to two-year terms as national and regional officers:

National Director at Large:  Karen Foote

Region 1
President - Jeremy Bankson*
Vice-President - Jean Boehler
At Large - Chad Fothergill

Region 2
President - Ryan Hostler*
Vice-President - Kurt Schmidt
At Large - Karen Areheart Ives

Region 3
President - James Hild*
Vice-President - Joshua Lindgren
At Large - Lara West

Region 4
President - Tom Mueller*
Vice-President - Tim Getz
At Large - Susan Friesen

*Regional presidents also serve on the national ALCM board of directors.

The national director at large takes office on September 1. Regional officers begin on October 1.

Thanks to these new board members and to all those who were willing to run for office!
July Survey Questions

Every 2-3 months we are inviting members fill out a brief survey. July's survey has two questions. You can go right to the survey or get a bit of background first:

If you've been following lately what's been happening to ALCM as an organization, you know that we have been growing as an organization both in membership numbers and in member benefits. One of the benefits we would like to offer are  publishers' reading sessions presented as webinars (free to members). Like our other webinars, these could be "attended" as live webinars or viewed later when it's most convenient for you. The first question is: Would it be useful to you if ALCM offered publisher reading session webinars as a free member benefit?

To help with planning for future events (and just because we thought it would be interesting to know), the second question asks you to identify worship/music events that you have already attended or plan to attend in 2018. We have a long list to choose from; you can also add any that we may have missed.

Please complete the survey by July 22nd. Results will be published in the August e-newsletter. Thanks!
Save the dates!

Mark your calendars for the following upcoming ALCM webinars:
October 18, 2018
Developing and Leading a 
Children's Music Camp 

Presented by Connie Millberg

February 7, 2019
Tips for Leading a
Worship (Praise) Band 

Presented by Kip Fox

May 16, 2019
Basic Principles of 
Worship and Music 
in the Lutheran Tradition

Presented by Carl Schalk

Raabe Prize Submissions
Raabe Prize
Submissions for the 2019 Raabe Prize for Excellence in Sacred Composition are being accepted. Additional details about the prize and submission requirements are available on the ALCM website.

Deadline for submissions is October 1, 2018.
Christmas in Cambridge

ALCM member (and former president) Lorraine Brugh and her husband Gary are spending two years as directors of Valparaiso University's study abroad program in Cambridge, England. 
As part of the year-long anniversary celebration of the Cambridge study center, the Valparaiso University Alumni Association and the Valparaiso University Cambridge Program invite you to spend Christmas abroad highlighted by an opportunity to attend the 100th anniversary of A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols at King's College Cambridge.  W hile seating cannot be guaranteed, this may be your best chance to participate in this historic event.

Programming begins with an opening reception on December 21st, 2018 and formally ends on December 26th, 2018. Daily itineraries include a combination of worship and reflection along with plentiful free time. View the itinerary here.   Options for arriving early or extending your stay are possible through Lorraine Brugh. Her contact e-mail is .

A Travel Invitation for ALCM Members
Together In Hope Project works to advance Christian unity through shared song, and  is currently focused on bringing the message of Christian unity to Rome in late October 2018. 
Gary Aamodt and Celia Ellingson, Lutherans with a passion for advancing Christian unity and for choral music, are the founders of Together In Hope Project. They commissioned two significant musical compositions (The Holy Spirit Mass and So That the World May Believe: A Motet for Unity and Service) to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and 50 years of productive Lutheran-Catholic dialogues
The Together in Hope Choir is a select ecumenical group of 60 voices from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. ALCM members are invited to become A mbassadors of Hope and travel with the Together In Hope Choir for a once-in-a-lifetime event, an inspiring week of transformative music and fellowship. From landmark concerts, a private tour of the Vatican Museum, and an excursion to ancient Assisi, every step of the journey will nourish and inspire Ambassadors as advocates for unity through shared song.

For more information, see our website at or send an email to: