July 2021
Music Ministry

Editor's Letter July 2021

Dear friends,

Music is such a significant part of our experience of church life. It has the power to bring us together in extraordinary ways and often allows us to experience powerful moments of one-ness with God and our fellow worshippers. In this issue, we bring you ideas on how to think about music ministry in new ways, open up to exploring different music traditions and approach music ministry with a renewed sense of curiosity and joy.

What does it mean to continually examine and reimagine church music and liturgy? In Music and Change: A Conversation with Dent Davidson, Sandra Montes talks with Dent Davidson, a professional lay music minister for over 45 years, who discusses his development as a musician and encourages us to seek and create new ways to express ourselves in our liturgy and music.

COVID-19 provided music, like many other art forms, with an opportunity to rethink, reimagine and refocus. In Decolonizing Church Music, Yuri Rodriguez highlights different ways to think about diverse music traditions and to refocus music and worship as less an aesthetic priority and more a missional one. This article is available in English and Spanish.

The musical traditions in Ethiopia, England and the African American experience in the United States highlight the importance of droning or humming to connect the faithful to God. In O Come, Let Us Hum to the Lord, Jemonde Taylor explains the significance of the tradition, shares beautiful examples of music and reveals how humming can be a healing and deeply spiritual experience.

Have we considered how welcoming our music ministry is? In Music That Builds Bridges, Jeannine Otis describes why it is so important to prioritize inclusive music – it enlivens worship, enhances our joy and builds bridges to strengthen our communities.

The Episcopal Church Foundation is excited to announce the two individuals named to the 2021 Fellows class – Cate Anthony and Indon Paul Joo. These innovative and emerging leaders are pairing their expertise with their passion to make a positive impact on the Episcopal Church and beyond.

As ECF’s longest running program, the Fellowship Partners Program has been supporting entrepreneurial leaders since 1964. Initially started to support academics with intentions to teach in seminaries, the Fellowship has expanded over the years to lift up emerging leaders who seek to impact the wider Church. ECF is proud to partner with our 2021 Fellows and is excited to journey with them as they shape the Episcopal Church of the future. Learn more about our 2021 Fellows here.

To learn more about ECF and our programs, please visit our website.


Charis Bhagianathan
Editor, ECF Vital Practices

This article is part of the July 2021 Vestry Papers issue on Music Ministry