Association of Lutheran Church Musicians
October 1, 2016 e-newsletter

This month we begin the year-long lead up to the 500th anniversary of the Reformation in October 2017. What musical or liturgical event might you plan for your community to lift up this commemoration? How can you, in your own little corner of the world, promote the ongoing renewal and reformation of the church? One helpful resource is the new hymn based on Psalm 46 that was created for ALCM's 30th anniversary. "God Alone Be Praised," with a text by Susan Briehl and two tunes by Zeb Highben, is posted in the Members Area of the ALCM website. In January of 2017 additional resources will be made available: organ prelude, handbell piece and hymn accompaniment, piano prelude and hymn accompaniment, instrumental resources, and two choral concertatos. So much to look forward to!

God's blessings to each of you as this year unfurls.
Anne Krentz Organ
ALCM Past-President

ALCM Board Meeting Highlights

The Board of Directors met on September 12 with the following highlights from the meeting:
  • All four regional conferences were successful, both in content/attendance and financial solvency.
  • Plans for the 2017 biennial conference in Minneapolis are progressing well. The steering committee is working hard to ensure a fresh and fulfilling look at the Reformation from an ecumenical perspective, discussing the role of the cantor in the future within its historical context.
    • Field trips planned to St. Olaf College and St. John's University (Collegeville).
    • Worship planned for Central Lutheran, St. Olaf Catholic, and Westminster Presbyterian.
    • The National Lutheran Choir concert will be held at St. Olaf Catholic Church.
  • The "in-person" board meetings for 2017 were set for January 16-17 in Chicago and July 13 in Minneapolis.
  • Approved 2017 advertising fees.
  • Affirmed that ALCM is moving forward with the search for a new executive director. We are pursuing funding options for this and expect the position to be a full-time position.
  • Completed final review of the statement "Called to Be a Living Voice." The statement has been presented for official adoption and acceptance by our membership.
  • Plans have started for creation of "Tips for the 30th," providing helpful tidbits for practical use.  

If you ask a group of Lutherans what they believe, they might be as wise to sing their response as to speak it. Long and strong is the practice of congregational song among us, song that bears the heart of our faith from generation to generation. However, "while God's song is infinite and everlasting," writes Mary Louse (Mel) Bringle, "our songs are finite and ever-changing." Congregational song is shifting, both in medium and in message, in order to speak to our current social and historical contexts. At next summer's biennial conference, award-winning hymn writer and professor of philosophy and religious studies Mel Bringle explores how the re-formation of hymnody seeks to balance fidelity to the best of our traditions and the core truths of our faith with openness to the unfolding future. How will our finite songs continue to praise and proclaim God's infinite love in Christ Jesus?

Celebrating 30 Years - Don't throw away that brochure!

ALCM is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. One of the things we are doing is a special 30th anniversary fund raising appeal. A letter with a brochure was recently mailed to all members of ALCM describing this effort.
The Development Committee has an idea for you, which involves a second use of the brochure from the mailing. Why not give it to your pastor/finance committee/benevolence committee/interested council member and ask your congregation to support ALCM with a 30th anniversary gift? Such a gesture would be an affirmation of your ministry in your context (they could give it in your honor), or of music in general.
Or perhaps you have a choir member or other person who is very supportive and interested in music in our Lutheran tradition. Again, give them a copy of the brochure and ask for their support. A gift of $30, $90, $300, $1500 (any multiple of 30) would be a suitable way for an individual or congregation to support ALCM and say "thank you" for the leadership of their parish musician(s).
If you need another copy of the brochure, you can download it here by clicking on the link to "30th anniversary." Donations may be made online using the same link. If you would like additional paper copies of the brochure to distribute, send an email to
We thank you for your own support, and for asking others to make a gift to ALCM!
Michael Krentz
Development Committee
Membership Directory Cover Opportunity

Our annual membership directory provides a wonderful opportunity to highlight a recent organ installation. If you would like to recommend an organ or organbuilder to contact about sponsoring the 2017 membership directory, please contact Cheryl Dieter in the ALCM office (800-624-2526 or

The Lutheran Youth Choir International
...not just another high school choir!

It is SO MUCH MORE, the ultimate music mission trip!

Live and sing for one week in a real German castle 
with other American and German high school students under the safe supervision of experienced American staff members in Mansfeld, Germany, Martin Luther's boyhood town! 

Join us for a  Festival of Global Vocal Music, July 12-25, 2017 in Chicago and central Germany (500th anniversary of the Reformation), including two exciting days in Berlin! Share great times of  service, discussion, sightseeing,  and recreation in addition to music! 

Significant scholarship help for ALL high school students, Lutheran or not.  One adult chaperone travels for FREE with every ten students (or at a discount for four or more participants). For more information, go to

Don't delay  - application deadline is December 1, 2016!


First Presbyterian Church, Charlotte, N.C.
Jan. 4-6, 2017

Featuring Robert Hobby, Allen Hightower, Craig Mueller, Tom Shelton, Stephen Mitchell and Mark Lawson, the National Conference for Sacred Music is a unique conference designed to provide the practicing church musician fresh ideas to help create a vital, growing music ministry. The emphasis of this conference is providing a variety of new approaches to revitalize and reinvigorate the church's passion for music in worship. For information about the conference, registration, hotels, schedule and workshop descriptions, visit

Hymn Festival

Dr. Jeffrey Blersch, University Organist-Concordia University, Nebraska
With Hope's adult and children's choirs and instrumentalists
Featuring hymns composed during the past 100 years and the world premiere of festival hymn "As Stone on Living Stone Is Set" by Kevin Hildebrand
Friday, October 7, 2016 | 7:00 pm
Hope Ev. Lutheran Church
5218 Neosho Street
St. Louis, MO 63109
Dr. Jeffrey Blersch, first appointed church organist at age eight, is Professor of Music and University Organist at Concordia University, Nebraska, and a member of the ALCM board. Best known for his creative hymn interpretations, he regularly performs recitals and hymn festivals across the United States. His more than one hundred compositions are published exclusively through Concordia Publishing House.

Institute of Liturgical Studies Opportunity

Valparaiso University's Institute of Liturgical Studies seeks nominations and applications for the position of co-director. Please see the call for applicants and position description.

Pedals, Pipes & Pizza

The Milwaukee Chapter AGO Pedals, Pipes & Pizza event is coming up on Saturday, October 8 , from 10 AM-3 PM in the North Shore area of Milwaukee. A  press release notice is attached into share in any way that you can through bulletin, newsletter, webpage or social media. Other local piano teachers, school music teachers, professional contacts and students are best reached through you! We look forward to hosting a great group. Let me know if you have any further questions.

Audrey Rhinehart, AGO PPP Coordinator
262-673-4831 x405