Association of Lutheran Church Musicians
October1, 2019 e-newsletter
Dear friends,
I bring you greetings at an exciting time of the year. For most of us, our choirs have now begun their regular rehearsal schedules and you have no doubt given thought to the numerous special days ahead including Reformation, All Saints and possibly Christ the King Sunday. Hopefully you have also given thought to the shape of your Advent season and how that will lead you to the wonderful season of Christmas, which is likely to include a variety of extra activities!
It's these special festivals and seasons that offer us extra opportunities to share our faith in the music ministry. Whether this means additional rehearsals, special ensembles, increased participation at multiples services, hired musicians, or special concerts, let me offer one important piece of advice: ORGANIZE AND COMMUNICATE. We live in a world that is so full of activities that we often compete for our participants time. They of course want to go the extra mile to help make all of these services and concerts special, but it is but one part of their busy lives.
Over the years of my music ministry I have found that the more I can communicate with those who serve with me, the better off we all are. Plan well in advance the regular and special rehearsals that will take place over the next few months. Share this information with your participants as early as possible so they can get dates on their calendars. If you have links (What an amazing gift YouTube can be!) to pieces that you will be working on, share them early. The more your participants can hear what they are working on, the more engaged they can be. And finally, as you enter these rehearsals, special services and concerts, be prepared yourself. Your dutiful choir members can sense when you are stressed, but can be comforted when you are leading calmly with confidence.
In the end, it certainly shouldn't be about how much extra we do, but hopefully the quality and care with which we offer our time and talents. Know yourself and know your partners in ministry. Find ways to creatively challenge them to grow without biting off more than you can do well. A little extra "simple done well" can go a long way.
Blessings to you in your ministry,
Jeremy Bankson
Region I President

2019 Events
Register Now!

Online registration closes at noon the day before each event.

First Lutheran Church - Lorain, OH
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Contact: Brian Wentzel

St. Luke's Lutheran - Waukesha, WI
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Contact: Michael Schaner
Faith Lutheran Church - Chico, CA
Saturday, October 12, 2019
Contact: Kevin Anderson

Christ Lutheran Church - Valparaiso, IN
Saturday, October 19, 2019
Contact: Cheryl Dieter

Lenoir-Rhyne University - Hickory, NC
Friday Evening, November 1, 2019: All Saints Program
Saturday, November 1, 2019: HHV Event
Contact: Ryan Luhrs

Interested in hosting a local workshop in 2019 or 2020? Contact Sally Messner at

Thursday, November 7, 2019

2:00 pm Eastern time

How to Integrate Jazz in Worship
(even if you're not a jazz musician)

Presented by
Deanna Witkowski

Deanna will offer accessible jazz resources that you can immediately use with your congregation or choir, including fully notated piano scores of her original prayer responses, Mass settings, and jazz arrangements of standard hymns. She will also demonstrate basic exercises in improvisation and how to harmonize a simple melody with just two unexpected chords. Check the ALCM website for additional information.

ALCM members, be sure to log in to the members area and follow the link on the members area page to receive the discounted price of $25.
ALCM Launches New Partnership Program

ALCM is seeking to establish long-term partnerships with Lutheran congregations, college/universities, and other institutions that support ALCM's mission: to nurture and equip musicians to serve and lead the church's song. This partnership program aims to bring ALCM closer to other organizations by enabling collaborative opportunities in programming. These events can be developed jointly between ALCM and the hosting entity (public events such as hymn festivals, special worship services, Hearts * Hands* Voices workshops, dedicated concerts, among other possibilities). Monies received from these partnership events will be directed toward expanding ALCM's outreach activities, recruitment, and educational efforts at the local and national levels.
Participating institutions will become ALCM hosting sites and be recognized as partners in mission. Similarly, participating church musicians, educators, and leaders who join us in this promising venture become ambassadors for the organization. The goal of this project is for ALCM to develop new and stronger connections with other institutions, as well as to help the Association become better known within the Lutheran community. If you have a passion for ALCM and its future and would like more information about how you can participate in this program, please send an email to

Paul Manz & Jaroslav Vajda 
Centenary Commemorations

Throughout 2019, several ALCM members have participated in hymn festivals and other events held to mark the 100th anniversary of the births of Paul Manz and Jaroslav Vajda. If you participated in a Manz- or Vajda-themed program as a planner, leader, or attendee, feel free to share details of the event---the program, reflections, or photographs---with for an anniversary feature in the fall-winter 2019 issue.

Women's Education Project: Can You Help?

ALCM member Fran Morton has been asked to give a presentation by P.E.O. International, a philanthropic organization that supports women's education (both traditional degree programs and continuing education). Her topic is Women in Church Music and the objective is to help P.E.O. understand how they might support education for women entering or engaged in church music. You can help her prepare by taking 5-10 minutes to tell her how you got your skills and what would help you develop your career via this survey. Thanks for your help!

Lutheran Summer Music (LSM) has a storied history of world class choral directors who have inspired young singers to pursue musical excellence and realize their potential.  See below the chronology of incredible choral educators who have made LSM the best place for high school singers to grow.  Do you know a young singer who would thrive in the LSM Choir?  Nominate a Student today to help them take the first step!
1982: Dale Warland and Weston Noble
1983: Weston Noble
1984: Sigrid Johnson
1985: Daniel Moe and Ann Howard Jones
1986: Donald Morrison
1987: René Clausen
1988: Craig Hella Johnson
...View the complete list of LSM choral directors  HERE!