Church music and musician support organisations and groups

This is a list of organisations which provide support to church-musicians who serve as staff or volunteers in more liturgically-oriented churches.

Most are nationally-organised and focussed on a particular denomination, although some have a broader mandate.

There are also a number of social media (mainly Facebook) groups which provide mutual support for church musicians.   These are listed at the bottom of the page.

If you would like your organisation or on-line-group listed here, please leave a message in the Comments box near the bottom of the page.

Church-musician support organisations

CLEF Catholic Liturgical Ensemble Formation

A US-based initiative aimed at supporting ensemble (ie small group) musicians from Catholic churches.

The Church Music Association of America

"An association of Catholic musicians, and those who have a special interest in music and liturgy, active in advancing Gregorian chant, Renaissance polyphony, and other forms of sacred music, including new composition, for liturgical use. The CMAA’s purpose is the advancement of musica sacra in keeping with the norms established by competent ecclesiastical authority."

The Catholic Association of Music

August 2014:  The CAM appears to have stopped operating.
"founded in 1996 by ... John Michael Talbot, [this] is a network of contemporary and liturgical music ministries. Its purpose is to provide spiritual, artistic and professional guidance to Catholic artists and to provide direction and education in the "business" of the Catholic/Christian music industry."

Catholic Music Ministries

A website where "Catholic Christian musicians, liturgists, choir directors and publishers are congregating ... to help each other grow in musicianship. "    Says that it has evolved from the Catholic Association of Music.

National Association of Church Musicians

"a network of people helping people across denominational, stylistic, and geographical boundaries. Our common goal is to support and encourage the excellence of music and worship ministry." ...
"one of the largest non-denominational associations of church musicians and other worship leaders in North America"

National Association of Pastoral Musicians

"The National Association of Pastoral Musicians fosters the art of musical liturgy. The members of NPM serve the Catholic Church in the United States as musicians, clergy, liturgists, and other leaders of prayer."

Conference of Roman Catholic Cathedral Musicians

An American association for musicians who work in cathedrals.   Membership is on a per-cathedral basis:  if the cathedral joins, then all staff musicians become members.

Pueri Cantores

An international organisation, supporting young (children and youth) liturgical singers.

American Guild of Organists

A professional organisation for organists - many of whom, naturally, work for churches.   Offers a wide range of on-line resources, including salary surveys.  
Their purpose includes
"To advance the cause of organ and choral music, to increase their contributions to aesthetic and religious experiences, and to promote their understanding, appreciation, and enjoyment."

Hymn Society

A US-based membership organization founded in 1922, with a mission to encourage, promote, and enliven Congregational singing.
Encourage – by building supportive relationships and enabling networking and ecumenical cooperation.
Promote – through our regular news publications and web presence news of events, activities, and recent developments.
Enliven – by providing experience in performance practices to help in the introduction and leading of the congregation’s song.
Their values include the statement that
[the] holy act of singing together shapes faith, heals brokenness, transforms lives, and renews peace.

Royal Canadian College of Organists

"Founded in 1909 ... the RCCO is a nationwide interdenominational community of professional and amateur organists, church musicians, choral conductors, and others sharing an interest in the organ and church music."

The Guild of Church Musicians

An English-based membership organisation, with a branch in Australia, which and exists to encourage all musicians within the Church to attain the highest standards of music in the worship of Almighty God. Membership is open to anyone interested in church music - but the main focus in on Anglican and Roman Catholic worship.

Society of St Gregory

"...the national society for liturgy and music in the Roman Catholic Church in the British Isles. It was founded in 1929, ... welcome[s] Christians of any denomination who seek to achieve similar aims through liturgy, music and the arts."   Online resources include a discussion forum.

Royal School of Church Music

Originally "English [ie Anglican] and choral", this organisation is now "committed to achieving the best use of good music in worship – whatever the resources, whatever the styles".

The National Network of Pastoral Musicians

An ecumenical organisation of people in the United Kingdom who are committed in some way to church music.   Limited on-line resources, but publishes a magazine regularly.

Irish Church Music Association

A membership organisation " ... established in 1969 to support the work of musicians working in the field of liturgical music in Ireland, through training, publication and dissemination of information". Supported by the Roman Catholic Bishops Conference, and based in St Patrick's seminary.

Australian Pastoral Musician Network

Founded in 2011, to "assist dioceses and worshipping communities in the evangelisation of Australia through the support and promotion of excellence in Christian liturgical, catechetical and religious music."

On-line church-musician support groups and pages 

UK Catholic Organists, Choirs and Cantors

A closed Facebook group - purpose as per the name.

L!FT Music & Liturgy Mentoring

A closed Facebook group, run by UK-based contemporary Roman Catholic focussed CJM MUSIC. Aims to offer mentoring, support to people involved in the ministry of music and song, and a place to collaborate.

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