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    Organist Appreciation

    Count me incredibly surprised today, when the worship leader stopped the service, pulled out an envelope and gave it to me. While I was gone last week, the church took up a collection to give to me when I returned. Although I told them I should probably be absent more often, it was nice to have the church express their appreciation.

    I think I'm in the right place. How have others' churches expressed their appreciation for your efforts for them?

    Michael
    Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
    • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
    • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
    • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

    #2
    Michael,

    It is nice to hear a positive story about a church musician who is really appreciated by the congregation that they serve. People rarely fathom how much work goes into it. I am happy for you.
    Bill

    My home organ: Content M5800

    Comment


      #3
      That is awesome, Michael! Makes it all worthwhile, as if the music weren't its own reward. Our little Disciples church seems truly appreciative of our meager musical contributions. A couple weeks ago the pastor paid us a courtesy home visit, and told us that he was bringing a message from the church board. He said the board wanted us to know that they could not be more pleased with our work and with our dedication to the task. Our sweet pastor has told us more than once that he has never had a better working relationship with a music team in any church he's pastored. Keep in mind that my wife and I are both primarily self-taught, having had piano lessons growing up, but neither of us majored in music, just participated in band and choir and such in high school and college.

      Each Christmas (this will be our 8th Christmas with this church) they give us a little bonus and the choir will often give us some special gift, like the hand-carved wooden organ pipe they presented to us a couple years ago. It is very nice to get these compliments now and then.

      I'm glad to know that your church appreciates you. And well they should. How many small churches have an organist with so much training and background? And you and your wife are certainly extra nice folks (I know from meeting you both), and they are lucky to have you as musicians and as co-worshipers.

      From what I hear, our immediate predecessors in this position were not a good fit and were eventually fired. Apparently they didn't mesh with the church in some ways, didn't work well with the rest of the staff, offended and ran off some of the choir members, tried to make themselves more important than they were, etc., you get the picture. So I suppose our humble and simple music ministry that emphasizes traditional hymns and anthems and downplays spectacle is more to their liking.

      Keep up the good work!
      John
      ----------
      Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
      Home: Rodgers Allegiant 677 with expanded four-channel audio
      Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
      Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
      https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

      Comment


        #4
        Thank you, Bill & John. However, I started this thread because we hear so many negative things about church organist jobs, and I just wanted to share something positive for once. It does feel nice to be validated once in a while. Hopefully, this thread will encourage others.

        Michael
        Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
        • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
        • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
        • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

        Comment


          #5
          Each year, the church committee chooses a group of volunteers who will receive a special present at the annual volunteer's fair and this year, the organists (who're not 100% volunteers because we get some money for our services) were chosen and got presents.

          And I have a few people in the congregation who give direct feedback after the service and tell me that they liked my playing.

          Thanks for sharing this positive story, Michael! And, John, I'm sure you don't have to hide behind "professionals" and it's nice to hear that your church appreciates your services.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by andijah View Post
            And, John, I'm sure you don't have to hide behind "professionals" and it's nice to hear that your church appreciates your services.
            You should hear him play! He actually has a couple of recordings linked elsewhere on the Forum. John, you don't have to hide behind anything (except the organ).

            Michael
            Way too many organs to list, but I do have 5 Allens:
            • MOS-2 Model 505-B / ADC-4300-DK / ADC-5400 / ADC-6000 (Symphony) / ADC-8000DKC
            • Lowrey Heritage (DSO-1)
            • 9 Pump Organs, 1 Pipe Organ & 6 Pianos

            Comment


              #7
              Now that the world has seen my bony old legs and knees, I have nothing left to hide except my dignity!
              John
              ----------
              Church: Allen MDS-45 with Allen MIDI-DIVISION-II expander
              Home: Rodgers Allegiant 677 with expanded four-channel audio
              Shop: Bunch of organs in varying conditions, some good, some not...
              Half of an incredible two-man organ service team -- servicing all the major digitals in Arkansas churches
              https://www.facebook.com/pages/Birds...97551893588434

              Comment


                #8
                I regularly receive thanks and complements on my playing for church. It would probably go to my head except that I am very aware of my level of skill (and lack of skills in many areas). I had a such a hard time accepting complements from people as a kid that my parents had to spend a lot of time teaching me how to gracefully accept praise.

                For me, the praise and complements are nice but they aren't why I play. I play because I love to play. I also love to play the music I get to play regularly.
                Sam
                Home: Allen ADC-4500 Church: Allen MDS-5
                Files: Allen Tone Card (TC) Database, TC Info, TC Converter, TC Mixer, ADC TC SF2, and MOS TC SF2, ADC TC Cad/Rvt, MOS TC Cad/Rvt, Organ Database, Music Library, etc. PM for unlinked files.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Sam, I see your point and I agree that many of us probably play for the love of playing, of music and for some, it has to do with their own faith and believes.
                  Still, I think that it's nice that people say thank you or comment in a positive way. In too many places, our "work" as organists and other church musicians is still taken for granted without ever thinking about the love and the efforts behind our activities.

                  Comment


                    #10
                    At my Anglican church, the organist normally plays some kind of recessional piece following the last hymn of the Sunday service and it is always followed by a nice appreciative round of applause from the congregation.

                    Comment


                    • myorgan
                      myorgan commented
                      Editing a comment
                      WOW! You MUST live on the other side of the pond. At most churches around me (not only my own), an organist's hard work is simply the product of a lot of practice, and a commercial before the real show.

                      Michael

                    #11
                    I had a nice surprise a few days ago. The phone rang and a lady asked if I'm the organist. I said, yes, I guess I am. She said she's the wife of a retired pastor and they're planning a special service for him for his 80th birthday and they need an organist and would I please come and play because they enjoyed my playing so much and didn't want anybody else.
                    Since I still had a free slot in my calendar on the day of the celebrations, I said, yes, I would play. I said, let me know how much organ music you want during the service, and she replied: a lot!

                    The interesting thing is that I don't play more than 8 services per year in her church, but I played a recital there recently and who knows where else they heard me play. I didn't want to ask, but I felt honoured that she said I was their first choice.

                    Comment


                      #12
                      We have a smallish congregation but regularly attended by a mix of ages, from old timers hobbling around to freshly harvested babes in arms still leaking from both ends. Often when I preach I get to appreciate anew the skills of my sweet wife who is our organist. She does have a degree in music but was really a piano player until a good few years back. Yesterday she sat down behind the badly out of tune piano at home (before we left for church) and produced ear pleasing sounds from that old upright instrument which had seen better days - before our youngest got to it and pounded those yellowed keys almost through the key bed!
                      But when my wife started to play the organ later during our service yesterday I realized one thing: What would we do without an organist! Just how can we sing those beautiful hymns without someone leading us on the organ? And I was reminded of what Proverbs 31:10-31 says about the excellent wife.... Unfortunately I am obviously kind of hamstrung to thank my own wife too much from the pulpit - but there are those in the congregation who constantly do thank her for the beautiful sounds she brings out of that expensive Allen.
                      So, to you faithful and talented organists: THANK YOU! God bless.
                      Nico
                      "Don't make war, make music!" Hammonds, Lowreys, Yamaha's, Gulbransens, Baldwin, Technics, Johannus. Reed organs. Details on request...

                      Comment

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