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

The Lenten journey has begun. We are a solid two weeks into Lent now, with only four weeks left until Easter. This can be a challenging time for us as church musicians. There are some simple reminders to help us stay on top of our stress in the most recent issue of  In Tempo . Hopefully those simple things will be helpful to you. Sometimes, however, there are times when the issues are bigger and the stress may seem insurmountable.
At our most recent board meeting, we talked about ways we can better support ALCM musicians and pastors who are going through tough times. We are excited to share that we are creating a list of those willing to serve in a chaplain role to help those dealing with difficult issues, especially in church staff or council situations. These folks can listen and offer advice (though no legal advice) to our members. We believe this is part of ALCM's commitment to "nurture and equip musicians to serve and lead the church's song." Our chaplains will represent a wealth of experience in listening and dealing with these complexities.
The group of individuals serving in this capacity will be shared soon, and we look forward to implementing this new, important support and service for ALCM members.
As you make your Lenten journey, I hope that each of you has a wonderful journey, and that you are able to use the support of ALCM in your planning and personal well-being.
  Kevin Barger
ALCM President-Elect

Registration is open!

Plans continue to unfold for Hearts Hands Voices events occurring around the country in 2018. These workshops are for musicians, as well as pastors and other worship leaders, who serve in congregations of all sizes and contexts, each with their own challenges and opportunities. 

Registration is now open for several upcoming one-day events (marked in red below): 

June (cont'd)
 9 - Carmel, IN
16 - Lorain, OH

Registration for the remaining April through June events (marked in blue above) will be opening over the next few weeks. See the ALCM website for a complete list of event dates and locations.

Registration is open!

Looking for a more intensive learning experience?

special  four-day event will occur on the campus of Valparaiso University from
Monday, July 23 to Thursday, July 26. A faculty team is being gathered to work with musicians on various practical skills related to leading assembly song. 

Learning sessions will cover specific topics in these areas:
  • conducting
  • choral leadership
  • keyboard leadership
  • handbells/handchimes
  • worship band leadership
  • musical styles from around the world
  • composition/arranging for worship
  • assembly song
  • integrating instruments
  • worship planning
  • understanding and using core worship resources, and much, more
I n the registration process, participants will be asked to self-evaluate their skill sets and identify potential areas for growth. This event will then be
designed around your needs for growing as a leader of the church's song. 

Early registration is $255 (before April 15) and includes several meals. Housing options include affordable on-campus air-conditioned residence halls or hotels nearby campus. See the ALCM website for additional information or to register.

Renewing your membership online?
You don't have to log in to the members area to renew.
There are direct links for renewing your membership and/or editing your contact information  at the bottom of every page. 
Many, Many Thanks!

Two big "thank you's" are due this month. First, thanks to the Metro New York Synod of the ELCA for their generous gift of $10,000 in support of our 2018 events. This gift was received as part of the synod's Wider Church Fund Grant program. We have been a grant recipient in the past, and are grateful to the synod for this continued support of ALCM. 

Second, our thanks to Randall Dyer & Associates for sponsoring our 2018 membership directory. The 2018 directory features their organ installation at the Cathedral of Christ the King in Lexington, Kentucky. Directories have been mailed and should be arriving in your mailboxes shortly. 

Have you designated your remaining 2017 Thrivent Choice dollars? Eligible Thrivent Financial members have until  March 31, 2018, to direct any remaining 2017 Choice Dollars. Don't miss this opportunity to support ALCM financially through this great program. Go to to learn more. Or call 800-847-4836 and say "Thrivent Choice" after the prompt.

The Center for Church Music  at Concordia University Chicago in partnership with the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians is pleased to announce the Richard Hillert Award in Student Composition, which is awarded every other year to a current student at a Lutheran university or seminary. Nominations are now open for the 2018 competition. See complete details on the Concordia website.
AGO Pipe Organ Encounters

The American Guild of Organists (AGO) is proud to announce five PIPE ORGAN ENCOUNTERS (POEs) for students aged 13-18, and one POE+ for adults in 2018. Complete contact information for each weeklong Pipe Organ Encounter can be found in The American Organist Magazine and online at The summer schedule follows:

POE (for ages 13-18)
June 17-22 Phoenix, Ariz.
June 24-29 Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.
July 8-13    Philadelphia, Penn.
July 16-21 Los Angeles, Calif.
July 22-27 Deland, Fla.

POE+ (for adults)
June 17-22 Rockford, Ill.

The PIPE ORGAN ENCOUNTER (POE) is an introduction to the pipe organ through instruction in organ playing, repertoire, history, design, and construction. These regional summer music camps for teenage students provide private and group instruction in service playing and solo repertoire, opportunities to learn about the musical heritage of various religious denominations, and a chance for young musicians to meet others with similar interests. Piano or organ proficiency ranging from intermediate to advanced is required. Scholarship assistance is available.

The POE+ is a summer program filled with practical information and instruction for adult keyboard musicians interested in improving their service-playing skills. Participants will be introduced to basic organ skills through private instruction and classes. The weeklong experience will lead to greater confidence and competence at the organ.

The Yale ISM Review

Each year  The Yale ISM Review  selects a theme drawn from human experience, and asks how sacred music, worship, and the arts illuminate and interact with this theme. The theme of the current issue is poverty--not the sort of spiritual poverty that means simplicity and freedom from material things, but the harsh reality of deprivation and want. In this issue you will discover how artists, poets, musicians, and liturgists have used their craft to "speak a new word" in a world where poverty and injustice too often reign.
Subscription is absolutely free and open to all. You may read this issue as well as previous issues on the journal's website at