Each week we minister to our choirs,
our congregations, our community...
what happens when we can't?
This is a difficult time for anyone in ministry. But we trust that this will pass and we will return to our churches with a renewed sense of purpose and joy for what we do.
In the meantime, we have more time on our hands than we normally do! Why not spend it learning new skills for the coming months? We're proud to share resources for all pastoral musicians.
During this time of self-isolation, NPM offers weekly videos, articles and recordings
that will provide insight & formation for your ministry.
These resources will be centered around a different topic each week and will
be open to both NPM and non-NPM members.
Week of June 29, 2020
A Prelude to Louisville: Sunday Music from Immaculate Conception
Suggestions for successful music ministry in a time of social distancing
The current social distancing guidelines have created many challenges, but they also provide us with an opportunity to connect to others in new and creative new ways. There are many encouraging stories about how parish communities are mobilizing to create phone trees and mutual aid groups to help with resources, supplies, and accompaniment: Proactively reach out to friends, family members, and neighbors, offer to run an errand to the grocery store or pharmacy for an elder, donate money or goods to nonprofits that continue to serve our neighbors, support local restaurants by ordering take-out, send letters and cards to the lonely and isolated, as well as to pray for those who are struggling in mind, body, spirit. While choirs normally get together to sing, there is always a strong social and familial component. While we can’t easily do online rehearsals, we CAN still gather to support each other.
Ways to do this:
- Zoom – Zoom accounts are free for up to 100 participants, if your meetings are 40 minutes or less. It’s quite easy to use with various types of technology, including a plain old telephone.
- Meet – on Google Hangouts, many people have Gmail addresses.
- Do – a Facebook live session with your choir. Take questions and read responses in the chat box
Find ways to stay connected and stay in each-others’ lives.
- Match up less vulnerable folks with more vulnerable folks to arrange grocery and prescription deliveries. This can extend to your other ministers too, not just choir members.
- Some folks are living in isolation and fear, ask if anyone wants a phone call every day or so just to check in and maybe pray together – do things that make people feel cared about and help them be cared for.
- Communicate with your choir regularly, perhaps offering the texts of choral music you were planning to sing, or daily prayer reflections.
Ways to keep the art happening:
- Send pdfs and recordings of music for your members to sing at home
- For directors and those who play an instrument – please keep playing!
- GIA Publications is offering the universal choir in a virtual experience – check it out here via Facebook and become involved.
- Online rehearsal and performance platform: Play music live and in sync with others from different locations, rehearse without travel or space, connect with other musicians and bands. (Example: https://www.jamkazam.com/ )
- Rehearsal Aids: Helping Choirs Learn, Rehearse and Practice Choral Music. Rehearsal Aids makes at-home choral practicing easy by providing visual rehearsal tracks for singers who wish to learn and rehearse their music in preparation for rehearsals and concerts. Rehearsal Aids also has an ever expanding library of tracks that are available to choirs (see Available Tracks page). These tracks can be modified according to specific choir needs.” (Example: https://www.rehearsalaids.com/ )
Ways to keep the faith happening:
- Encourage participating in live streaming Liturgies (Tutorial video by Craig Colson and Mark Matson, NPM Exclusive)
- Liturgy of the Hours every day
- Pope Francis Reflection Text from Extraordinary Urbi et Orbi Blessing, 27 March 2020
Updated links for resources (provided by the USCCB):