First off, I'm a co-leader on our praise team at church. My tasks are song selection and arrangement. Another person handles rehearsal, and to the team more-or-less comes off as the "leader."

The question regards a singer. This singer ("A") is a professional, very talented. "A" has only been a part of our team for about 6-9 months. From about the 3rd Sunday, the rehearsal leader had moved "A" to a point of leadership on the platform, in the process supplanting a committed, longer-term singer ("B") who is somewhat timid when it comes to leading songs, but has excellent harmony vocals.

There are several factors to "A"'s service that trouble me. "A" can only sing with the team twice per month (while other leaders commit to 3 or 4 per month). "A" is a much-more charismatic singer than anyone else on the team, and feedback from some congregation members indicate some discomfort and distraction because of this. "A" also seems to command the stage, perhaps because of experience as a pro singer, and often looks out of place standing in the choir because of the charismatic movements.

The other tough part is that my co-leader seems to be happy with "A"'s style, even though it pretty much clashes with what the rest of the team does (we have 3 or 4 other vocalists with lead ability). We have a worship planning team that has given a lot of direction to my co-leader that we feel "A" needs to be mentored towards blending with the rest of the team. This has been happening for months, as far as I know it hasn't been addressed with "A" yet.

My questions are...
1) Are we being sticks in the mud? If God is leading a church to be contemporary, but not exactly Pentecostal/charismatic in their style, is it appropriate to reprimand a singer who seems to be drawing attention to themselves because the style is more progressive than the other singers?

2) Would you allow a vocalist to lead songs if they only come to practice and sing two times per month? I know there are probably teams who rotate weekly, biweekly, or monthly, so that's a reality of it...but if the culture is to have lead vocalists sing 3-4 Sundays per month, does it create dissension to have a twice-a-monther lead songs that other more committed leaders could handle?

Thanks in advance for your advice!

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I am praying for you, friend.
Great... But this kind of confuses me. So I have to ask: why?
cory, you cant say they are truly being "sticks in the mud" and quenching the Spirit until you are there and can witness the situation.

Guitarearl, the questions you have to ask yourself are things "A" being excessive in movement and facial expressions and the like? because its important not to become a spectacle while on stage. if thats the case...we go back to the other forum discussion "do we put the band on or off stage in front of the church?". please dont answer that, its just what the other forum was about. i dont actually want to discuss the issue anymore. we already did that to exhaustion.

and if "B" is not a very good leader (a good leader has confidence and is not timid, thats why people follow), then someone who exudes that confidence should lead. unless "B" gets out of the bubble and starts becoming more bold.

and i agree with cory here (i know, shocker). that if "A" commits to 2 times a month, then hey, thats what has been agreed upon. whats the big deal? its pretty much like any other rotation you would have for a worship team.

but i definitely dont agree with pushing someone to a lead roll just a few weeks after joining. people need to know what kind of walk they have and what kind of a person they are to build up a good amount of knowledge for a more informed decision. its not wise to just hand out leadership to people you dont know.

and if "A" clashes with the musical style or singing style of everything going on, then either the others dont have good taste in whats good....or youre not hearing things.

but in any case, my suggestion is to pray about it and ask for a humble heart regarding the situation, because you sound a little bit upset over the subject.
Wow!!! This is a good set of questions!

1.) Depends- You could be a stick in the mud. It is possible.
------ I would stay away form the word reprimand. They have done nothing wrong.
------ If they are being a little more flamboyant in there style then they may need to turn down there stage presence a little (or alot).
------ On the other hand If you are trying to be more contemporary then, YOU might need to step up your game..
------ Mentoring is awesome!!!

2.) The issue is not commitment. The issue is availability.
Commitment looks differant for everyone. You and the pastor need to figure out what you define as "committed".
The culture argument holds no water for me. Culture is most of the time wrong. YOU might need to step up your game.
------ Only you would know if it causes tension on the team, but the team may need to get over it!
------ Sounds like a jealousy issue. ("I have been hear longer and served (payed my dues) so it should be me")
------ Try to be inclusive of others. That means you have to work with schedules. (not saying you aren't just a thought)

3.) My thoughts. - If this person was a professional singer at one time then she probably has more experience than most of your team put together. If her stage presence is truly a distraction then ask her why she is doing why she is doing.
Try to learn where she is and you might learn something. Then from a point of empathy try to help her understand that
"your church" has a little more subdued atmosphere. Then try to meet in the middle somewhere.

* Just remember it is not all about skill. Skill is good, you need to be good at what you are doing.
* But does the Holy Spirit like to come and listen to you when you play?
* Do the people meet/connect with God during your praise and worship service?
(or) do they stand there disconnected? Do they clap at the end of every song? (They shouldn't)
* Have you bathed yourself in prayer and worship before God the week before you play? (not about a quick prayer before service)

4.) What is so bad about being charismatic? (I is one) Shondi :-)
Just remember it was the charismatic/Jesus moment that brought you modern worship music. :-)

Good questions.
Thanks for all of your replies. I think each church is going to have a different stylistic philosophy, so it's tough.

Our team has several capable vocal leaders on Sunday morning. On the scale of 1-10 (1=very conservative worship, 10=very charismatic worship), 3 or 4 of us land between 4 and 7. "A" is probably 9+, and "B" is probably 2.

I'm not so concerned about the # of weeks per month thing. We all have our down times. Anyone want to comment about the necessity to be at a practice if you're off on Sunday?
Yes...don't ask me to be there.

I believe that to take proper care of your volunteers, you should only ask them to prepare for the times they are on. Can they learn something by being there all the time? Sure, but it's a lot to ask from a volunteer with a busy home life.
For about three years I was playing in a church that did this. It was frustrating as we had a bunch of people sitting around a lot of the time who could have been at home being moms and dads and good students.

So I agree with this totally.

When I lead, I run a pretty tight ship. So I did ask newbies to come to practice for 4-6 weeks just to meet people and see how we did things. It wasn't totally required, people did it anyway, and found it beneficial. A couple even extended their "orientation" just because they enjoyed learning the new material and fellowship.
i dont see a point in someone being at practice if they wont be singing/playing.

but there is the issue of people who ONLY go to church when they sing/play. they should be attending that church regularly. not just when they are on stage.
While I entirely agree with this - I did get "busted" by one worship pastor for not practicing being there when I'm not on stage. The trouble was that if I was there, they had me on stage (which was fine). The only reason I would miss Sundays is because family or work put me on the road (at the time, this happened about once every three months).

At my current church, I'm on stage in one of the various venues EVERY week. I have only been there since April this year, and I tend to miss one Sunday each month. The problem here is that I'm serving at a another church.

So while this may look bad to some ("he is only here when he is performing"), the leadership knows what is going on. In a couple of cases, they even asked me to go help out at another church. So we do have to be a bit cautious here as we might not always be in the loop. Of course, I'm sure that everybody here is aware of this. I'm just pointing it out for conversation's sake.
i dig you. i must make myself more clear then......if someone isnt on stage, they shouldnt be missing church just because they dont really want to go. if they do have a legitimate reason for not being there, they should be there.
True dat. :)
Thank you Andy. Worship teams are always works in progress. Each of us grow as time goes on. I like your idea of a common goal (win) in order to guide the team towards a positive ending. I want to see everyone on the team grow in their faith as well as their ability.


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