As our church year comes to a close, so does our nearly year-long effort to synthesize and articulate a vision for music ministry and how our congregation sees it manifesting at Foothills and throughout the larger community as we move forward.
We conducted detailed interviews with some of the top UU music ministers in the nation and with leading music ministers from other liberal religious traditions. We held feedback circles with choir members, parents with children in the RE program, and some of the many musicians in our congregation, asking open-ended questions about how music has, can, and should manifest in their lives and the life of the congregation in support of our mission statement. We conducted an online survey that drew nearly 90 detailed responses. We took all of this feedback and synthesized it into the visioning statement below, which will be handed over to the music minister search committee, to guide their work, which begins in the fall.
Sue Sullivan, Gretchen Suetching O’Dell and Herb Orrell
Music Ministry Visioning Statement
Music Ministry at Foothills supports the unleashing of courageous love by empowering the congregation, by helping us to integrate heart, mind, and spirit, by providing us inspiration and opportunities for collaborative worship experiences, and by embodying the message of Foothills to the larger community.
We do this by:
- Embracing our diversity – we are a safe home for people of all backgrounds and perspectives and we honor and celebrate diverse musical traditions and understand that they can help us become more culturally competent.
- Growing our faith – through a flexible, multi-faceted music program that involves all members of the congregation and deepens our experience of musicality in our lives.
- Awakening our spirits – by developing and nourishing a sense of community, connection, joy, and service through the collective experience of music.
Music manifests in our congregation:
- Through many different year-round options for people to engage in music, including small groups, special music, pop-up choirs, bands, children’s choirs, multi-generational choirs, a general adult choir, Vespers teams, healing choir, song circles, drum circles, and hosting guest musicians.
- Through a choir that is both a covenantal practice of love, loyalty, and trust, and a service to the congregation, leading and supporting congregational singing.
- By being collaborative in every possible way, including fostering the musical gifts of lay musicians and engaging in bold and innovative partnerships with other ministries within our church and with community partners and other area churches.
- By spreading creativity, innovation, and joy, by inspiring social justice engagement, and by furthering the mission of this church.
Our full-time Minister of Music*:
- Collaborates creatively and enthusiastically to generate meaningful and transformational UU worship experiences.
- Is playful, eager to build community, foster healing, and inspire commitment.
- Fosters the integration of the music ministry throughout the life of the church and through their own participation in the life of the church.
- Brings expertise in emerging congregational practices.
- Brings a diversity of musical expertise, including strong sight-reading ability.
- Is a welcoming, inspirational, and organized music leader and teacher, especially for non-professionals, and seeks out and embraces the rich musical talents and abilities in our congregation.
- Helps us grow in our cultural competence and become a more diverse and welcoming community.
- Deeply understands and is committed to professional boundaries and the roles and responsibilities of a UU Music Minster.
- Can network effectively throughout the vibrant Northern Colorado music scene.
*Not an exhaustive list – that will be accomplished in a job description.