Sing Unto the Lord

Rosters and Post Traumatic stress
June 14, 2007, 8:10 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

I love and hate doing our church roster. I hate it because it looms over me as some massive undertaking where I have to line up all the right people with all the right people and fit in everyone and not look biased or self-seeking. It takes a lot of drafts before an ideal roster can be produced.
The love comes from the excitement of trying new things, hearing new combinations, and being reignited to pursue our our goal as a ministry team.
Myself and the music leadership team did a bit of thinking before we put out the latest roster (it’s not out yet).
The model we have gone for in the past has been get musos to do as much as they can with each other. We have been aiming to get people to mix with different people all the time so as to create team. With a music team of just under thirty all we have created is a pastoral nightmare! Our new approach is to have three separate bands. These bands will be two weeks on, four weeks off. This allows them to develop ideas together over their two ‘on’ weeks but also gives them time to arrange their own stuff in the off-weeks. We are hoping this leads to a better sense of ‘band’ among the smaller groups. Within those groups we are aiming to set up a mentoring system within those smaller bands having older dudes looking out specifically for one or two younger dudes. This may help in keeping up with everyone and having everyone feeling like they belong.
The band model means that rather than being a bunch of christian musos, the cruisos (my affectionate term) can be a band. A single cell.
They can bounce ideas off each other and learn how to serve each other in a smaller context.

As well as all of this we are launching an event called ‘Project Sinai’ (the first of many ‘Projects’: watch this space!!!). Project Sinai is an event aimed at keeping our Cruisos passionate about God’s word. We are going away together as a team… not really to do too much music stuff, but rather just spending some good time reading God’s word and praying to him together. This will help with still feeling like a larger team even though people will be more connected to those in their own band.
How do you do music rostering in your church? What dramas do you see and how do reckon they can be resolved?

P.S – These guys are not from our church band. That would be cool though.


4 Comments so far
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Ah yes, the roster. That has been causing me stress too and has been overwhelming me since I took on the music role at the beginning of this year. (And we have nowhere near 30 musos – wow, how I wish we did!)

My answer – I simply haven’t done one! I’ve been organising it ad hoc on a month by month basis. I’ve decided to stop feeling guilty about it too.

As I see it, I’ve got a few “projects” to work on (e.g. introducing new songs, trying to introduce broader range of instruments, getting the sheet music culled and streamlined and enough copies for everyone …) and I’ve decided just to take it one step at a time and not try to undertake all projects at once. If I get a roster up and running before the year’s out, well good, but I’m not going to stress if I don’t. We seem to be coping with current system (or lack thereof).

Sorry, not many helpful tips for you there Dan!

Comment by Andy M

cant wait for the new roster 🙂

Comment by violinkid

I have played as a flutist for 20 years. I was encouraged reading that you wanted to introduce other instruments. Because I am not “new here” I feel I have much to say on behalf of instrumentalist i.e. violinist, horns, flutes and other orchestra (if you will) related instruments. These types of instrumentalist are by in larged IGNORED. I am in my forties, I have watch church music/worship change, change and then change again sometimes because of a move of God etc., my also due to cultural changes. None of these are bad; however it seems my experience they many of us in the orchestra group are just plain not made room for. My husband & I are apart of a growing church that we love and will remain at, he is involved with sound & I of course flute. I have played for almost a year, have learned many new verisons of songs I already new, adapting & changes all good. But what I do not feel like is that I am part of the group. I have only gotten help with “notes” a few time but basically have remained in boot camp were I have finally started playing where I feel it flows with the music we are doing and sounds good. But I do not feel apart of the group. I am old, many of them are kind of young…. I have worked hard, prayed, follow leadership, kept my mouth shut. I am the only one that had a mic but currently doesn’t because we have a few blow channels. No money in budget to fix things but I have to say. On Easter, my heart was singing I played with all my heart to the Lord but felt very out of play and bad… the ONLY one with out a microphone. Oh, if you are asking if it is my play, I am so glad to say it is not. There was a trumpet player that came and tried to join but was nicely asked to please not play. I am in accomplished but I do well. You are all right, the focus should be excellence and all that entails but in the end it must be to Jesus…. I love him so! Signed – feeling so not a part of the band…

Comment by Flutelady

One more thought to add – please pardon my grammar & tense error. I am sleepy! We are getting ready to record our 1st CD. I just found out that I will not be a part of the group going to Nashville. I was told that it is not yet know what parts they will have for flute. Would have like to of known sooner what was going on. Am sad because again, no room for orchestra instruments. Did I mention I am the ONLY Female instrumentalist? The most important thing I am doing right now it to continue watch I have always done – play for an audience of ONE. HIM! I do not feel like God had said, “hang up the flute” you time is done. I love to play my flute to him. There is nothing like it in the whole world. I will remain behind our Music Pastor and continue to pray. We are paid for the time we play (a first in 20 years, totally no expected – we do put in allot of time- someone wanted to bless us!) But it is never about money, that is a first. I want 2nd chair flute in heaven! Thanks for listening.. it was good to get it out. Don’t want to ruin the project we are doing, I will trust the leadership and I know its not about me its about him. But I do think I have raised some good points.

Comment by Flutelady

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