What kind of music do we play and sing at CTK?
In general, the music wants to reflect the Mass itself. Because a Charismatic Episcopal Church Mass embraces both the ancient and modern, the music will try and do so as well. At CTK, we lean more toward contemporary Christian music, songs you would usually hear on Christian radio/media. We also incorporate traditional hymns, both ancient and modern liturgical music, and even occasional folk songs from around the world. The equal emphasis on Sacramental/Liturgical, Biblical/Evangelical, and Spirit-filled/Charismatic worship is called Convergence Worship. From a musical standpoint, the blend of music that reflects this is often called Blended Worship nowadays.
Why are some songs the same each week while some are different?
In the Liturgy itself, there are sections called the Proper, sections that change week to week (ex: prayer of the day – the Collect, Scripture readings, Homily, etc..) and the Ordinary, sections that remain the same each week (ex: Confession/Absolution, the Creed, the Eucharistic Mass, etc…). The music tries to be reflective of this concept. The musical Proper includes songs that change each week, such as the Processional song, Praise set, Eucharist music, and Recessional. These songs generally reflect the particular day and/or season, especially the Scripture readings. The musical Ordinary includes the same refrains sung each week, often called Liturgical Music, or Mass Settings. These include the Gloria (Glory to God…) or Kyrie (Lord have mercy…), Gospel Acclamation (usually focusing on the phrase Alleluia), Sanctus (Holy), and Agnus Dei (Lamb of God). Sometimes we sing other refrains, depending on the season, and we also included an Offertory and Children’s dismissal song in this category. These are treated differently from regular songs; these are meant to become “Spiritual muscle memory.” Now, the frequency of changing the musical settings to these refrains differs from church to church, some changing them out almost every week and some not for several years. We at CTK are somewhere in the middle; changing the musical settings a couple of times each year to reflect the season, but still giving them plenty of time to sink in. We take some liberties, especially around Advent and Christmas, where we interchange these settings with songs/carols that still reflect the liturgical moment.
How is the music selected?
First and foremost, prayer. There is also a considerable amount of time given to researching/meditating on the Scripture readings and Collect for that particular Mass, as well as overall themes for the current liturgical season. Practicality also plays a factor, where it simply comes down to who the musicians are and their availability for Masses and rehearsals. If it’s a newer piece of music, we usually keep it in a heavy rotation so that it becomes more familiar. The director of music puts the music together each week based on all the above, also attempting to include song suggestions by the music team and parishioners.
Can I give song suggestions?
Of course! You can tell me in person or email me email@example.com. It’s usually not a matter of “if” we can do a song, but “when” it would be most appropriate, factoring in the church year and music team practicality. Please consider suggesting music with a “as well as” mentality as opposed to a “in lieu of” mentality. The challenge of a blended style of music is that there is going to be something that probably isn’t your cup of tea, whereas hopefully there is also something that really speaks to you. Never rule out the Holy Spirit to move through something you didn’t foresee, especially in a style of music/song you don’t particularly care for; that is actually a pivotal moment in my own Christian walk. There is plenty of room at the table for everyone! Praise God!
What are the music groups at CTK?
Currently, there is one main group of musicians that makes up the Sunday Music Team. This is a group of both instrumentalists and vocalists who lead everyone through the music sections of worship. These people are on a rotation based on willingness and availability, usually having two rehearsals: Thursday evenings and Sunday mornings. There is no age limit nor are there auditions – everyone involved is at the discretion of the Music Director. There is also the CTK Kids music program, where the kids rehearse for ten minutes between the end of Sunday School and the beginning of Mass. To embellish these Sunday rehearsals, we started a program called CTK Kids Music and Pizza, which is held every 2nd and 4th Tuesday afternoon during the school year. For special occasions, people are free to do something different, such as a solo, or a custom group of people and/or guests. The music ministry at CTK continues to grow, so look for new groups/faces/songs/happenings the coming year!
How can I participate in the music ministry?
Please let me know if you are interested! Call me, email me, throw something at me, etc… Whether it’s singing, playing an instrument, or something behind the scenes, there is something for you! People are free to participate however they feel comfortable, whether it’s most weeks or just once in a while, whether it’s the entire Mass or just a portion. Musician schedules are purely based on availability. Production is also a huge need right now, see Kaylyn Libolt or Matthew Bantel. The absolute best way to support this ministry is to COME – come to Mass, come to events, help others to do the same! Bring friends and family – we are all in this together!
Psalm 27:4 “One thing…”