When I researched intergenerational music ministries, I asked leaders what evidences they have that their music ministry participants understand the value of being in an intergenerational music ministry. In other words, what practical ways did they employ to demonstrate value to their participants.
Just over twenty percent of the leaders I interviewed report that their music ministry participants comment that using a variety of literature from various music types helps all feel valued and motivated to participate.
This was a big surprise to me. Not the fact that it was reported, but that it wasn’t reported MORE FREQUENTLY.
Why is this the case?
I’m not sure I have a solid answer for this. Especially since every one of the leaders I interviewed use a variety of musical styles in their worship contexts. However, only twenty percent of them make the connection to how variety may be a key component of how the music ministry participants understand that all ages are being valued. This baffles me.
Other responses to how music ministry participants understand that all ages are valued yielded more frequent responses such as:
The Leader Teaches About the Importance of Being Intergenerational
The Leader Makes us Feel Like a Family
The Leader Says that Music Participants want to leave a Legacy to Future Generations.
These responses make perfect sense. We expect to see them as frequent answers to our question, but when the music itself is such a key component of music ministry, why was it not the most frequent answer? Using a varying literature has a greater potential to touch the musical style preferences of most of the congregation. Using varying literature says to the congregation that you are interested in more than singing the newest songs only, or in hymns from centuries ago, but a variety of music that might appeal to and be familiar to a wide range of ages.
Worship leaders, let’s celebrate our music diversity with our people so they understand the value to the intergenerational church.