The music ministry is an important aspect of worship life at Zion and participation by the congregation is strongly encouraged. Music during worship not only enhances the message of the Gospel, but lifts up the spirituality of the hearts and spirits of our parishioners.
Each year our music ministry continues the exciting mission of spreading the Gospel during each liturgical season, from Advent through Pentecost. During the year all participants in this ministry have the opportunity to grow in their faith, develop their individual talents, and embrace the fellowship and spirit of God as the Lord’s glory is celebrated through music. While some music groups, such as the choirs and some of the ensembles, rehearse weekly from September through May, others meet to rehearse as needed, depending on Zion’s yearly music schedule. All involved in Zion’s music ministry are dedicated musicians and willingly share their talents and gifts. In addition to the many involved with Zion’s Music Ministry, we are truly blessed to have a supportive congregation with open hearts and minds that embrace the variety of music that thrives at Zion.
The talents and abilities of Zion’s musicians vary greatly – from beginners to more experienced singers and instrumentalists. All that is required for anyone to be a member any of the music groups is to simply have a desire to share their musical gifts and a willingness to make a commitment to their Choir or Ensemble.
Below is more information regarding each of Zion’s music ensembles in which parishioners are welcome to participate.
Chancel Choir is open to all in high school and older. Choir members do not have to be able to read music, although it is helpful, and simply love to celebrate the glory of God with their singing. Rehearsals are scheduled weekly on Wednesday evenings from 7:30-8:30, from the end of August or early September through May. In addition to leading worship and singing anthems during our major liturgical celebrations, the full Chancel Choir is often divided into two smaller choirs for anthem presentations during Zion’s regular Sunday morning worship services. Additionally, soloists, duets, trios, etc., usually from within the choir, often have an opportunity to share their musical gifts throughout the year.
Bell’s Angels (Hand Bell Choir) include dedicated ringers in high school and older, with weekly rehearsals scheduled for Wednesday evenings from 6:15-7:15, just prior to Chancel Choir rehearsals. One does not have to be able to read music in this ensemble, but it is helpful since all bell positions are dependent on following a music score and listening for the other bells. This ensemble has a substitute list and they often have an opportunity to step in and fill in for a “hole” if one of the regular members is unable to attend rehearsal or be present on Sunday morning to ring the anthems.
Youth Hand Chime/Youth Bell Choir Ensemble is an instrumental group, giving our young parishioners another opportunity to participate in Zion’s music program, teaching students in grade 4 through seniors in high school how to play hand chimes/Hand Bells and read simpler hand bell music, initially using two-octaves of chimes/Hand Bells. Those participating are not required to read music, but it is helpful. This ensemble rehearses weekly on Thursday afternoons from 5:45-6:15 p.m. during the school year and is scheduled to play during Sunday morning worship services and special liturgical celebrations.
Zion’s Junior Voices (Youth Choir) involves older children and includes students in grade 5 – seniors in high school. This choir rehearses using a musical score with the students following a vocal line and learning to “read” their voice part. The Youth Choir participates during Sunday morning worship services, primarily on the Sundays the Children’s Choir participates. In addition to singing anthems, the Youth Choir is involved with singing and acting in Zion’s annual Christmas musical and assists with leading the younger choir in rehearsals and Sunday morning music presentations during worship.
Our String Ensembles are open to all string players who have some experience playing and access to a violin, viola, cello or bass violin. The String Ensemble is open to all students in high school and older who have had playing experience in a school string group or community ensemble, and our Youth String Ensemble gives our younger players, who have had experience playing in a school ensemble or have taken lessons privately, an opportunity to play with a small ensemble. Traditionally, the ensembles are scheduled to play during the same services as the children’s choir sings from September – May with additional playing time in the summer as available. A minimum of two rehearsals, as needed, is scheduled for both string ensembles to prepare for playing music during worship year round.
Gsus (Guitar) Ensemble provides beginners and more experienced musicians an opportunity to play in a musical group. Participants should have a cursory knowledge of playing the instrument, an interest in learning more, and provide their own guitar. The Guitar Ensemble is included in Zion’s music rotation throughout the year with rehearsals scheduled in the evenings, as needed, prior to playing during Sunday morning worship services.
Additionally, students who are learning a wind instrument in school and have had at least one year of experience on that instrument or who are taking piano lessons and also have one year experience, as well as adult wind players and pianists, have opportunities to play their instrument throughout the liturgical year.
The family of Zion, from our younger children through our more mature adults, embraces many styles of music, from the traditional to the contemporary. You will discover there is an ensemble for you and your family that will be both challenging and rewarding. Come and participate in Zion’s exciting music ministry, as we lift our voices and instruments to celebrate the glory of God!