Encouraging the Next Generation of Church Musicians

Larry ShackleyBy Larry Shackley, Alfred Composer

Whether we like it or not, church musicians live in the spotlight. If you play, sing, or conduct every week, everyone in the congregation knows who you are, and you help set the standard for their opinion of church music and musicians. Young people who have any interest in using their talents for the Lord will look up to us as role models for their life and career.

Some of this modeling happens passively. For instance, if you set a high musical standard, they will learn to respect church musicians, because they will notice that you are just as serious about the Lord’s music as other types of musicians are about their music. On the negative side, you never know whose ears might hear you making comments like, “Close enough for church work,” or criticizing a soloist or member of the choir.

Are you aware of young people in your church who have musical gifts? Do you look for talented young singers or instrumentalists to take part in special musical events? If we get young people plugged in to musical ministry, they will come to think of church music as a viable option in the many musical choices they have before them. The important thing is for you, as a musical “authority figure” in the church, to show young musicians that you value them, and then model Christ-like service in your leadership and performance.

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3 responses to “Encouraging the Next Generation of Church Musicians

  1. I appreciat those timely words of wisdom from Larry Shackley. I also appreciate his wonderful arrangements as well.

  2. Simply wish to say your article is as astounding.
    The clearness on your put up is just excellent and i could assume you are
    an expert on this subject. Well together with your
    permission let me to snatch your RSS feed to keep up to date with impending post.
    Thank you a million and please carry on the rewarding work.

  3. I believe the Biblical admonition to “be fruitful and multiply” applies to the talents God has given us. We are to train the next generation of musicians. As a piano teacher, I often schedule my students to play in church, sometimes a solo and other times I play with them to ease their nerves. I play for a service that has a lot of grandparents in it and they are a most appreciative audience. They request that my students play more often. By the way, I played Larry’s arrangement of “I Must Tell Jesus” last week and have had lots of positive feedback. Way to go, Larry. Thank you.

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