Sustaining Parish Music Ministry in a Pandemic [Online Workshop]

Singing is dangerous! At least that’s what the research on the aerosol particle spread of Coronavirus currently advises.

So, the reopening of churches for public worship back in July saw congregations gathering for liturgy without communal song. It’s very strange – we’re still trying to get our heads around it.

When the first period of lockdown began in March, our churches were closed to public worship. Our priests – for the most part – figured out how to live stream the celebrations of Mass, and we accustomed ourselves to the routine of joining via our screens and making Spiritual Communion.

It happened quickly and it is fair to say we were probably caught on the back foot a little.

We endured it.

A small part of us was probably grateful for the break. (Let’s be honest, the week-in week-out demand of planning and preparing music for the liturgy can be a little relentless at times!)

Perhaps, we naïvely anticipated that in a few weeks or months everything would be back to “normal”. However, as we enter the second round of lockdown, it’s beginning to dawn on us that normal as we knew it is a long, long way off.

What next for parish music ministry?

Either we need to get on with the work of re-imagining parish music ministry for this pandemic era, or we simply resign ourselves to music groups and choirs being redundant for the foreseeable future.

I believe music has too vital a role to play in our worship, liturgy and life of faith for the latter to really be an option.

So let’s begin. Let’s re-imagine. Let’s rebuild. Let’s renew.

The situation we find ourselves in now is compounded by the fact that in many places parish music ministry has been “in crisis” for some time now – long before COVID-19 came along.

It’s been a priority area of our work and ministry, which is why we have put together this special online workshop entitled How To Sustain Parish Music Ministry in a Pandemic on Tuesday 17 November at 7:00pm.

The pandemic brings on a new set of challenges and restrictions that we need to learn to navigate resourcefully. And as we strive to find a way forward I think we need to focus on five practical pillars:

  1. LEAD
  2. CONNECT
  3. EQUIP
  4. LEARN
  5. SERVE

And, of course, we need to PRAY!

If we take our eyes off the Lord, we will surely sink beneath the waves. But by God’s grace, with a little expectant faith and constant prayer, we will discern a way forward as we face the extraordinary challenges of this time.

“Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him, and he will act.”

{Psalm 37:5}

If you’d like to explore these issues further, please register now for our free online workshop on Tuesday, the 17th of November at 7 pm?

Jo Boyce will be going deeper into each of these five areas and sharing a process for moving forward as the new liturgical year approaches.


3 thoughts on “Sustaining Parish Music Ministry in a Pandemic [Online Workshop]

  1. Will it be recorded and available afterward? I’m in central Canada and am having trouble rearranging my schedule to accommodate the timing. This looks like something I would find really helpful.

  2. I would love to attend your workshop tonight but unfortunately it clashes with another booking I’ve made. Are you planning to record the workshop and make it available at a later date? Please keep me informed of plans.

    Thank you.

  3. I was unable to catch the workshop last night (zooming with my choir-it keeps me sane) but did pass the details to a couple of parishioners who I thought would enjoy it.Are you going to put it on the website so those of us who missed it can catch up ,I do hope so ?

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