“Higher Compensation for Musicians” is the third trend that Martha Simmons wrote about in the African American Pulpit Spring Edition of 2007.
Simmons notes that many churches are finding it difficult to pay for quality music and thus have to go without. Certainly it places those pastors with musical ability in greater demand, but what can those of us who are musically challenged do to provide quality music to our congregations? Especially in light of the fact that most of our churches are smaller and cannot afford big salaries.
One thing that we can do is emphasize congregational singing. One thing that many of these “praise teams” have done is take the singing from the congregation. Sure the congregation is to sing, but too often you cannot hear them. All you hear is the melodious tones from a professionally trained few while the sound of the congregation is muted. Turn the professionals down and lets get back to hearing the soulful cry of the elderly woman in the third row who is a little flat, but very soulful and spiritual. Let’s hear the praise of the congregation. More on this when we get to the 16th trend.
Another thing that we can do is mix up the soloists. While we should attempt to give God our best, the male chorus may sound like all is in unison, but the praise of God will come in all packages when we get to heaven.
But back to our main point. Musician’s are being paid. They should be. The worker is worthy of his or her hire. In addition, we should not take advantage of musicians who are providing this valuable and great service to the church. However, let us not get to the point where we can’t sing because the musician ain’t here or we can’t praise God through song because the sound system ain’t working.