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Unread 06-01-2011, 11:35 PM   #31
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LOL I have to go now, I don't know anything about Pastoring. My comments were strickly towards Worship Teams and Leaders and my big mouth went off track elsewhere!!

I love all of you and I respect everyone's criticism, and argument as well as oppinions, theorys and ideas. Thank you Christianguitar.org

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Unread 06-01-2011, 11:36 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean View Post
So if a church doesn't pay the worship team they aren't serious and don't have a serious worship team?
Quote:
Originally Posted by steveguitar12xx View Post
Yep. That's pretty much exactly what I'm saying...
I'm serious about my team. I'm gonna have a volunteer on my team long before a paid musician. A kid who's been playing for a year who I can trust to show up is gonna go a lot further with me than a seasoned player who I can trust to show up as long as there is a paycheck. A volunteer is someone who generally wants to be there to learn and worship. A paid musician may do a better job, may even want to be there to learn and worship, but [I have found the hard way] is generally also quite interested in that paycheck. YMMV.

What really stinks is that when the quality drops, that musician is kicked to the door.

To be open, we do pay a pianist, but he performs far more services for us in other areas of the church (ministerial duties, office, hospital, teaching, backup preaching), and he personally considers the piano duty as volunteer. I second that notion.

Before becoming a minister I was on some teams that were paid, and some that weren't. As a player, give me the ones that weren't. Hands down, every time. More dedication, more care, less drama. Again, YMMV.


Quote:
[B]Lastly, This is why your budget percentiles are wrong, you forgot to bring into your calculations the size of church building, electricy and heating. Smaller churches = Less cost for those bills and if you have a steady congregation in a small church, you should have no problem with funds. It's a fact that smaller churches have an easier time with paying the bills than larger churches. Just for that reason..
Brother....this just isn't reality. As a music minister in a small church (sub 100) the money just isn't there. I've also been in a church of around 200, and the money wasn't there...a church of 600 and the money wasn't there....and a church of 1100 and the money wasn't there. I can point you to about 80 churches within 50 miles of my house in the same boat, and about 4 that aren't. And this is Texas....church central.

In this part of Texas it takes about 4-6 families earning at least 50k a year tithing regularly at 10% to support one FT staff member with what would be considered a living wage here. That's just one staff member...not the water bill. In a church of 100 people you may not have more than 5 families that tithe regularly. You may not have more than one family earning 50k.

The money isn't there. I'm lucky they can pay me. I can guarantee you that we have the best worship team for a church our size within 50 miles, but I can promise you that if they can't pay the electric bill next week I won't be paid either.
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Unread 06-01-2011, 11:39 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steveguitar12xx View Post
For one, in my honest oppinion...
I think a serious worship ministry is all about lifestyle.. I don't think it's right to put just anyone on the platform. And by that i mean someone unsaved. The blind cannot lead the blind, or can they? I also think it's about commitent...How far will they go to be there for that ministry? Will they go through fire and flame and will they be there on time? How long will they keep coming on time and will they show you the respect they want to recieve themselves. The next is the heart. How much do they care about the church, their faith, the people, themselves? How humble are they? No one likes a vain leader. I think Skill and Professional are nice additions to this too. As the Bible says play skillfully before the Lord. I think all these things make up a "Serious" worship ministry but who knows i may have corrupted it's true meaning
So...

* Christian with a solid lifestyle
* Committed
* Punctual and respectful
* Love for church, faith, people and themselves
* Humble
* Skill

I agree with all of those.

However, I disagree with the quote from you below which seems to imply a church needs to pay a church to get the list above.

Quote:
Every serious church who wants a serious worship team should pay not only the worship leader but all those on the team who pour out their time, effort and those who no matter what they've go through during the week are always there for services AND practice.
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Unread 06-01-2011, 11:42 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean View Post
So...

* Christian with a solid lifestyle
* Committed
* Punctual and respectful
* Love for church, faith, people and themselves
* Humble
* Skill

I agree with all of those.

However, I disagree with the quote from you below which seems to imply a church needs to pay a church to get the list above.
I understand. Hmmm....Maybe I need to go back on think over a few things.
I've learned alot from this, Thanks!!!
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Unread 06-01-2011, 11:51 PM   #35
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Quote:
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Is there a significant difference between pastors and musicians that makes the question of paying them different?
Time
Unique skill


Preaching, leading a church, and pastoring people takes far more time than either playing in a band or leading a band. Leading a band takes more time than playing in a band.

Being able to preacher and lead a church is a fairly unique skill set.
Being able to sing and lead a band is a fairly unique skill set.

Being able to play an instrument proficiently is not that uncommon.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 12:02 AM   #36
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I understand that most church musicians do not work at their role as full time careers, but many do. In my own US state and denomination, there are hundreds. Expand that to other states and the number grows to thousands. What about them? Is there a reason their ministry role should be paid differently from someone whose title includes the word, "pastor?"

Unique skill? There are many highly trained preachers who cannot lead a music ministry. (There is far more to it than singing or playing an instrument.)

Does it really boil down to one's CEO status, the way it does in the corporate world?

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Unread 06-02-2011, 12:40 AM   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cotten View Post
I understand that most church musicians do not work at their role as full time careers, but many do. In my own US state and denomination, there are hundreds. Expand that to other states and the number grows to thousands. What about them? Is there a reason their ministry role should be paid differently from someone whose title includes the word, "pastor?"
You know of 100's of church musicians in your state who are giving 40+ per week to the band?

I'm not sure how to respond except to say: I don't believe you or I have no idea what you're talking about.


Playing in a band at a church does not require 40+ hours per week.

Playing in a band for 5 services, choosing the songs, making chord sheets, doing a weekly meal with each member of the band, practicing, and meeting with the pastor weekly...does not require 40 hours per week.

Full time worship pastors/directors aren't just "church musicians." They all have other responsibilities. Even it's just dealing with the complexities of a being at a large church, they have other roles.

Quote:
Is there a reason their ministry role should be paid differently from someone whose title includes the word, "pastor?"

Does it really boil down to one's CEO status, the way it does in the corporate world?
Are you kidding me?

I'm an associate pastor. Which more me means I'm over the student ministry, communications, back up preaching, and whatever else I'm assigned.

I preach/teach/prepare around 80 sermons or lessons per year (12 sundays adult worship, 25 sundays middle school, 40 sundays high school, 2 retreats, 2 sundays at other churches). I plan a week long mission trip, a fun weekend retreat, a weekend leadership retreat, a week long training retreat, and the student side of our week long Backyard Bible clubs. I lead a small group of high schoolers and meet with another guy weekly. ...those are just my fixed student ministry responsibilities. Ministry always has stuff which pops up and this list didn't include fun outreach events...it also fails to include all of the administrative work which goes along with any leadership position.

As communications director I"m responsible for all church promotions, the website, all printed materials to be distributed, graphic design, the bulletin, and all video editing. Some weeks this is no big deal. When we moved into a new building this became virtually a 40 hour per week job.

...and most importantly

For the bulk of the last two years I've played in and organized our high school band. This includes: selecting songs, creating chord sheets, running practice, creating power point slides, and playing in the band. The only reason that working with the band is difficult for me is that I have to prep, setup, practice, and play all immediately prior to preaching. So I finished with all of my sermon stuff 3 hours before the service starts and I can barely look at my notes prior to teaching.


So no it's not just that I'm obsessed with my corporate world "CEO" label. I HAVE LOTS OF RESPONSIBILITIES. I'm not sure what you're trying to argue, but church musicians DON'T NEED TO BE FULL TIME JUST TO BE A CHURCH MUSICIANS.



The other missing piece which is unique to being a pastor is that YOU CARRY THE SPIRITUAL BURDEN OF YOUR PEOPLE. It's not just a matter of work. It's emotional investment in sinners in a fallen world. I volunteered and interned at churches for 6 or 7 years before becoming a pastor. None of those experiences prepared me for the burden I would carry as a pastor...and I only responsible to pastor the teenagers. The lead pastor is responsible for everyone. Simply knowing all of the sin going on inside of your church is unbelievably draining and painful. It's extremely painful when you're watching two high school girls be torn apart because their father decided to leave his wife for another woman. It's painful to watch a teenage girl jump from relationship to relationship because her dad is an abusive alcoholic and her mother won't do anything to protect her...so she seeks security in a boyfriends.



I'm not sure if you're just playing devil's advocate or what, but I think it's painfully obvious why a "pastor" would be paid full time and a church musician would not be.
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Last edited by Sean; 06-02-2011 at 01:17 AM.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 01:41 AM   #38
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I've been involved in church music teams for over 9 years, and I've been both a volunteer and on staff. All I can say is I MUCH preferred being a volunteer to being paid. Churches are stressful places to work. The church I worked at has an excellent music team of really solid and committed people. None of them are paid. I'd say that the majority would not want to be paid. I finished working there last year, and though I've stepped down from involvement in music, I've stayed involved with things like leading small groups and teaching sunday school. Those things require as much or more preparation than being on the worship team, and I'm glad to do them because I love the church. I would not want to be paid to do those things.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 06:44 AM   #39
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I see but i don't understand why you are attacking me?
"Attacking" you?
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Unread 06-02-2011, 09:48 AM   #40
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Hi Sean, truly I not trying to argue anything at all. I, too, am an Associate Pastor, one whose role includes almost all of the normal pastoral duties except preparing several sermons a week, but whose primary tool for ministry is music and worship.

Mind if, in an effort to make my response clearer, I respond within a quote of what you said?
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sean View Post
You know of 100's of church musicians in your state who are giving 40+ per week to the band?

I'm not sure how to respond except to say: I don't believe you or I have no idea what you're talking about.


Playing in a band at a church does not require 40+ hours per week.

Playing in a band for 5 services, choosing the songs, making chord sheets, doing a weekly meal with each member of the band, practicing, and meeting with the pastor weekly...does not require 40 hours per week.
I wasn't talking about just playing in a band. I didn't say that. I asked about "church musicians." Full time church musicians. And yes, I know several hundred of them personally. I've been the President of my state's conference for full time church musicians, and I personally know many more in other states.

Quote:
Full time worship pastors/directors aren't just "church musicians." They all have other responsibilities. Even it's just dealing with the complexities of a being at a large church, they have other roles... So no it's not just that I'm obsessed with my corporate world "CEO" label. I HAVE LOTS OF RESPONSIBILITIES. I'm not sure what you're trying to argue, but church musicians DON'T NEED TO BE FULL TIME JUST TO BE A CHURCH MUSICIANS.
Yes, absolutely! But the reason I was called to serve my church was primarily because of my skill, training, experience and dedication as a musical minister, not the fact that I am also comfortable performing weddings or funerals, counseling, organizing mission trips, or many of the other duties you mentioned.

Yes, the church wanted me to be able to function in other roles as well, but they "hired" me because they needed a church musician like me. They made it clear that my other duties were secondary. That's all I'm getting at. I'm not trying to be argumentative in the least. I sincerely apologize if it seems otherwise.
Quote:

The other missing piece which is unique to being a pastor is that YOU CARRY THE SPIRITUAL BURDEN OF YOUR PEOPLE. It's not just a matter of work. It's emotional investment in sinners in a fallen world...
I'm not sure if you're just playing devil's advocate or what, but I think it's painfully obvious why a "pastor" would be paid full time and a church musician would not be.
Are you assuming that I would not also carry the spiritual burden of my people? That I don't also meet them in the emergency room after a tragic accident? That as a church musician I don't counsel with the member of my choir or praise team whose marriage is falling apart? That I don't plan and lead musical worship for the men at our local homeless shelter, that this doesn't give me opportunity to witness to them about the transforming power of Christ afterward? Etc.

No, I am not the "Senior Pastor." That is not my calling from God. My calling is to use the gifts He gave me, primarily the gift of music, be an eye witness (apostle) to God's grace, to proclaim His Word (preach), to win the lost (evangelist), to care for my flock (shepherd), to mentor in Christ (teach), "to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ" as Paul outlined in Ephesians 4:11-12. I've dedicated my life to fulfilling that call, and I've been doing it now for 38 years. God has blessed and used my ministry in ways far beyond me.

My question remains, as I assumed the CGF would welcome such discussion. Should this kind of ministry - this part of the body of Christ - be less valued because I don't deliver what we know today as sermons*? (Most of the full time musical ministers I know earn 40-65% of what their Senior Pastor earns.) I don't see that anywhere in Scripture, though it is common in today's church.

Sincerely,
cotten


*Please do not assume I am demeaning "sermons." I'm not. I also preach on occasion, and have a very healthy respect for the challenge of doing so. I'm not sure that what we call sermons today is exactly what the Bible refers to as preaching, but that's probably a topic for another thread.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 10:14 AM   #41
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I think the thing that is being missed by some here (and is quite common in many different threads and topics) is that we're each looking at this subject based on our own perspectives and experiences. As such, we're each probably going to have experiences that are unique to us and might even sound a little odd when compared to the experiences of others.
Knowing this, let's be careful to weigh our words and understand that our opinions are not necessarily absolutes. What is reality for us in our churches may not be reality for anyone else here. They might be very real for us, but they are not the end all, be all of all things pertaining to musicians playing in church, paid or not.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 10:52 AM   #42
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Mind if, in an effort to make my response clearer, I respond within a quote of what you said? I wasn't talking about just playing in a band. I didn't say that. I asked about "church musicians." Full time church musicians. And yes, I know several hundred of them personally. I've been the President of my state's conference for full time church musicians, and I personally know many more in other states.
Cotten,

It sounds like by "church musician" what you actually mean is "worship leader" or "music director" or something along those lines. Is this an accurate summary? It certainly doesn't sound like what most of us picture when we hear the term "church musician". If this summary isn't accurate, then what is the difference in job descriptions between "church musician", "worship leader" and "band member"?
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Unread 06-02-2011, 11:54 AM   #43
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TO thesteve's point, it sounds like the primary disagreement is over the definition of "church musician."

When you say "church musician," I think of someone who just plays an instrument in the band. I'm not really even thinking of the leader. And even if we're talking about the band leader, just leading the band doesn't require 40 hours a week unless the church has a CRAZY busy schedule or the church is very large and there are technical sides to the job.

When you say "church musician," you seem to be talking about someone who was primary hired to lead the worship ministry but who has many other roles or responsibilities.

In the circles I run, that position is usually called worship pastor or worship director. I've never heard that position labeled "church musician." So I associated that label with someone who's role is very limited.


Quote:
Originally Posted by cotten View Post
Yes, absolutely! But the reason I was called to serve my church was primarily because of my skill, training, experience and dedication as a musical minister, not the fact that I am also comfortable performing weddings or funerals, counseling, organizing mission trips, or many of the other duties you mentioned.

Yes, the church wanted me to be able to function in other roles as well, but they "hired" me because they needed a church musician like me. They made it clear that my other duties were secondary. That's all I'm getting at.
I think that makes all the difference.

Quote:
I'm not trying to be argumentative in the least. I sincerely apologize if it seems otherwise. Are you assuming that I would not also carry the spiritual burden of my people? That I don't also meet them in the emergency room after a tragic accident? That as a church musician I don't counsel with the member of my choir or praise team whose marriage is falling apart? That I don't plan and lead musical worship for the men at our local homeless shelter, that this doesn't give me opportunity to witness to them about the transforming power of Christ afterward? Etc.
I'm sure you do, but you also just described a more involved role than just being a "church musician."


Quote:
My question remains, as I assumed the CGF would welcome such discussion. Should this kind of ministry - this part of the body of Christ - be less valued because I don't deliver what we know today as sermons*? (Most of the full time musical ministers I know earn 40-65% of what their Senior Pastor earns.) I don't see that anywhere in Scripture, though it is common in today's church.
I'm all for paying people what they deserve. If someone is hired to primarily for music but who has other responsibilities which require full-time hours, they should be paid a wage they can actually live off of.

If someone is only leading or playing in a band, that doesn't come even close to the level of time the senior pastor is putting in.

There are many reasons a senior pastor is making more than the worship leader.

* Number of responsibilities
* Education level
* Unique skill set
* Poorly run church which is under paying one person and over paying another
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Unread 06-02-2011, 11:59 AM   #44
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Here's a follow up question: Should we pay our Pastors? If so, how and why, or maybe why not? Is there a significant difference between pastors and musicians that makes the question of paying them different?
Let me offer a slightly different way of looking at it. I don't see a pastor's salary as payment for being a pastor; rather, I see it as a means of enabling him to be a pastor. It takes away from him the burden of feeding and clothing himself and his family so that he can devote himself to his ministry. It's my opinion that any pastor who is truly called by God is serving because it's what he must do; all we're doing as a church is providing a support mechanism so that can do what he must.

Now, as a volunteer musician, I can and I do put in all the time necessary to play competently on Sunday morning. I'm as called to this ministry as any pastor is to his, but my ministry leaves me time to follow a non-church profession and earn a living. I don't need, nor do I want, financial support from a church to pursue my ministry.

Frankly, handing me $25 or $50 for playing in our praise band would feel more insulting than anything, and if the church did so I'd just drop it back into the offering plate anyway.
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Unread 06-02-2011, 01:01 PM   #45
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Now I understand the reaction - it's because of the differing ways we define "church musician." To me, it's any musician who serves in a church, inclusive. To others, it's only those who play an instrument in a band. That's a completely foreign definition to me, but given that definition, I can now understand what had appeared to be some rather harsh, puzzling replies.

1/2 Fast, I totally agree that we pay those we pay in church in order to free them to do what they do, full time, without having to make tents. But again, there are church musicians who
  1. are seminary trained, sometimes with higher degrees than the Senior Pastor with whom they serve,
  2. have more hours of their week pre-scheduled with their responsibilities than the Senior Pastor,
  3. actually work longer hours, on an every week basis, than their Senior Pastor,
  4. have more years and a broader range of ministry experience than their Senior Pastor,
  5. yet are paid less than half of what their Senior Pastor is paid, with fewer "benefits" such as insurance, expense reimbursement, etc.

Please don't read this wrong, and think that I am against paying Senior Pastors with loving generosity. Quite the opposite is true. I just have to question why some churches pay their "church musicians" (my definition) so much less. When I've asked a wise, trusted friend in one church, he thought and prayed about it for three days before he answered: "We've adopted the world's corporate model versus the Biblical model."

I've come to believe that he is right in many cases.

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