Organist/Music Director (Woodstock, VT)

Date Posted: 
May 14, 2020
Organization Name: 
The First Congregational Church of Woodstock
Contact Email: 
Salary Range: 
Up to $ 20,000.00 per year
Job Description: 

Name: The First Congregational Church of Woodstock, Vermont Address: 36 Elm Street City: Woodstock State: Vermont ZIP: 05091 Phone: 802-457-9818 Website: Congregation size: 135-150 Worship Style: Traditional - Blended Denomination: Biblical Congregational (Reformed) Job Title: Organist/Music Director Full/Part time: Part Time Salary: Up to $ 20,000.00 per year Experience: Desired but not necessary Education: Desired but not necessary Closing date: Until filled Opening – We are now accepting letters of interest and resumes for the Organist/Music Director position. These may be submitted via the following email or to the street address listed above. Contact Info – Ruth Holleran, Chair email: mobil: 802-281-3151 General Description – The Organist/Music Director's work will include providing organ and piano music for Sunday services, leading hand bell, youth and adult choirs in a manner that will assist the Pastor in leading congregants to worship the Lord in Spirit and Truth. Position Requirements: This individual must evidence a strong Christian faith and desire to use his/her musical abilities for God's glory. He/she will have proficiency on the organ & piano in order to lead and accompany the congregation in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. A familiarity with various instruments (including voice) and rehearsal techniques is also desired. Description of desired music – First Congregational has a long tradition of hymn singing. Congregants value the four-part singing as an expression of our diversity-in-unity. The older congregants have skill in four-part singing; the younger ones learn by doing. The people of FCCW value the hymn texts for their rich doctrine and expressive range, for their power to disciple and strengthen one's walk of faith. From time to time a “volunteer choir” sings. Occasionally, skilled musicians serve with songs or instrumentals during the worship service. Psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs of a contemporary sound find a place at the beginning of the Sunday School hour as a way to enter into the Lord’s Day study and worship. The church places a high value on singability and avoids songs that are better sung by skilled performers, so attention is given to vocal range, intuitive rhythms, and regular form. Position Details: A complete listing of duties, responsibilities and requirement for this position may be viewed at: Church History – The First Congregational Church of Woodstock has a long and varied history. As early as 1773, Woodstock had a “gathered church”–a group of believers associated for worship and fellowship, but without any formal organization. In 1781 the First Church of the North Parish was organized with 19 members and in 1800 the members voted to accept the Congregational plan as “most agreeable to the Word of God.” In 1805 Charles Marsh, Woodstock’s first attorney, visited every householder in the village telling each one that he would not live in a town where there was no place of public worship. He donated the land on which to build “a meeting house for the worship of Almighty God.” The frame of the church was raised on Independence Day in 1806, and finished enough so that the Vermont legislature met in worship here on election day in 1807. In 1808, the building was completed and dedicated. The framework of this original building, which was very soundly built, remains today. In 1818 a committee of three journeyed to Boston and purchased a bell for the tower from Paul Revere and Sons. Frederick Billings, builder of the Northern Pacific Railroad, returned to his hometown of Woodstock and purchased the Charles Marsh homestead, the childhood home of George Perkins Marsh. A highly principled man of deep Christian convictions, Billings erected the existing Billings Chapel in 1880 as a memorial to his parents. Laurance Rockefeller was married to Mary Billings French at this church in 1934, beginning a long and affectionate commitment to the town and the church in the tradition of Mary Rockefeller’s grandparents, Frederick and Julia Billings. We are a relatively large church for the Upper Valley of Vermont/New Hampshire in rural New England, with roughly 135 active members. Approximately 100 people join us for worship each Sunday morning. Currently, the FCCW sanctuary houses a well-maintained three manual, 35 rank Austin pipe organ with separate swell, choir, and Great Divisions (installed in 1968) along with a fine Boston grand piano made by Baldwin purchased in 2005. Handbell concerts contribute in a most wonderful way to worship and are eagerly anticipated by the congregants. We have approximately 4 1/2 octaves of Schulmerich Handbells. These are mostly an older set as the original two octaves were a gift to the church from a member back in the late 60’s or early 70’s. We also have a two-octave set of Suzuki Handchimes and a closet full of music! For a more detailed account of this history please visit the Church's website