Church musicians, in my opinion, have the dual role of making/teaching music and encouraging faith formation within a community. It can be challenging to negotiate these two roles, but I believe ministry is just that - balancing and negotiating, challenging and encouraging, building up and bringing together.
It's not just a job. It's something we pour our hearts into.
Today, I'm sharing a few books to add to your bookshelf (or share with a church musician you know!). Many of these are practical, encouraging reads written by church musicians, for church musicians. What could be better?
7 Books for Church Musicians
Please note: some of the links in this post are affiliate links, which means if you decide to purchase through any of them, I will earn a small commission. This helps support the blog and allows me to continue creating free content. Thank you for your support!
1. The Church Musician (Paul Westermeyer)
A handbook for church musicians, pastors, and music committee members that explores the challenges of contemporary culture, worship styles, and biblical integrity. A quick, easy read!
2. From Postlude to Prelude: Music Ministry's Other Six Days (C. Randall Bradley)
From philosophical, theological issues to working with staff members; promotion to organization and time management; serving on committees to managing finances; this book covers the practical parts of the "job" that occur throughout the week.
3. Hearts & Hands & Voices: Weekly Reflections on Music and the Church (William O. Baker)
A collection of letters written to his church choirs over the years, Baker's thoughts on music and ministry are both encouraging and inspiring.
4. The Instrumental Resource for Church and School: A Manual of Biblical Perspectives and Practical Instruction for Today's Christian Instrumentalists (Julie Barrier, Jim Hansford & Mark Johnson)
A comprehensive resource for instrumental music in worship, including band and orchestra programs, arranging, recruitment, and ensemble preparation.
5. The Singing Thing: A Case for Congregational Singing (John L. Bell)
This book transcends the typical contemporary vs. traditional debate, focusing instead on why people sing (and why not). Equally suited for music directors, contemporary worship leaders, clergy, and organists.
6. Hearts & Hands & Voices: Growing in Faith Through Choral Music (Sue Ellen Page)
From the philosophical to the practical, Page explores the theological and educational significance of children's music programs and offers practical suggestions for teaching and leading children's and youth choirs.
7. Praying Twice: The Music and Words of Congregational Song (Brian Wren)
Wren explores the theological significance of hymnody and communal singing through an in-depth study of the words and music that comprise our congregational song.
What is your favorite ministry-related book? I'd love to hear!