Part Time Music Director, First Church Somerville UCC, Somerville, MA

Part Time Music Director, First Church Somerville UCC, Somerville, MA


First Church Somerville United Church of Christ (FCS) is seeking a Music Director who will collaboratively lead a diverse music program at our progressive church. Worship music at FCS is at its best when led by a Music Director that enjoys making music that is fun and spiritually grounded. The Music Director’s primary roles will be: member of the worship team; congregational accompanist; choir and musician director; and planner of special musical events. An excellent candidate for this role will be able to work with a range of ages and musical abilities, work within a range of genres, and may specialize in any style of music. A love of folk, gospel, and hymnody is a plus. They will also enjoy working collaboratively and be open to a fun and flexible worship environment that includes working frequently with a Sunday morning pick-up choir Ability to accompany music on the piano is required.

Our Community

First Church Somerville Mission Statement, Affirmed on January 19, 2022

First Church Somerville lives to make God's expansive love and justice real through radically inclusive sanctuary, authentic connection, spiritual exploration, and transformative community engagement.

First Church Somerville is a progressive Christian church in Somerville, Massachusetts. Our worship life is vibrant and we want our music to lead the way in helping us connect to God and one another. Our congregation has people of every age, but tends to be fairly young with many young and youngish adults, parenting families, and children. We are over 50% LGBTQ and we take our welcome to those who have been historically marginalized seriously. We are multiracial,mostly white, and actively working on creating a culture of anti-racism. We worship in a beautiful sanctuary with a grand piano and an electric organ. Other instruments in the church include: various hand percussion and hand drums, handbells, and, in the Chapel, an upright piano.With a renewed commitment to disability justice, we are working to make our chancel fully accessible. 

Essential Functions

  • Worship: help select, prepare, and (when appropriate) play or accompany hymns, seasonal responses, preludes, postludes, choir selections, and other music for Sunday morning, holiday, and special worship services per agreed upon schedule. Collaborate with lay musicians and singers  to create music for worship.

  • Worship Team: attend regular worship team meetings and collaborate with the other members of the worship team (Lead Pastor, Pastoral Resident, and Office Manager). These meetings are scheduled collaboratively so that they fit into each Worship Team members schedule. 

  • Music Committee and budget: meet with the Music Committee regularly to plan the musical life of the church. Develop and track the music budget in conjunction with the chair of the Music Committee. Purchase sheet music and hymnals as needed. 

  • Choir and Singers: develop, organize, and oversee choral experiences, including rehearsals. The choir sings during regular Sunday worship, holiday worship services, music-based services, and other special events. Choir should be structured so that singers of all abilities feel both challenged and actively invited to participate. This you may need to create rehearsal/practice tracks for congregants who do not or cannot read printed music. You will work with solo and/or small groups of singers on special pieces as you feel is appropriate or as requested. 

  • Musicians: recruit, organize, and oversee musician experiences. Musicians perform music at times during regular Sunday worship, holiday worship services, music-based services, and in special events, whether integrated into standard accompaniment or through spotlighted instrumental offerings. Musician skills vary. Musicians are mostly self-directed, but require some guidance. You may need to create or procure  sheet music and/or chord charts for certain instruments if preexisting material is unavailable.

  • Intergenerational music: create opportunities for youth participation in the music program.

  • Special music-based services and events: FCS has several annual services that revolve around music. We also host or have a significant presence at several special events that involve music. You will be responsible for coordinating music at these events, in whatever form you and the Music Committee determine most appropriate. 

  • Weddings and funerals: you have the right of first refusal for all weddings and funerals at FCS. Compensation for these services shall be provided by the families.

  • Instruments: coordinate the maintenance of all musical instruments (e.g. pianos, electric organ, handbells). 

  • Music Library: coordinate upkeep of the music library.

Additional Functions

  • Attend staff meetings.

  • Complete special projects and other duties as assigned.

  • Comply with FCS policies and procedures, including our Safe Church Policy. 


Requirements & Qualifications: 

The Music Director need not be a member of our, or any, religious community, but some experience in a church could be helpful. An excellent candidate will have experience leading participatory music, choirs, and musicians. The ideal candidate will be self-directed, skillful at volunteer management, and warm, enthusiastic, inclusive and flexible. 

The ideal candidate will be familiar with and incorporate a variety of musical styles into worship. They will also be comfortable helping to adapt lyrics to make it more inclusive (i.e. avoiding gendered language for God). Ability to accompany music on the piano is required. Technologically, a candidate should be comfortable using Zoom, Google Docs, and Google Sheets, or have a willingness to learn. 

The Music Director will work with the Lead Pastor to set their (flexible) weekly schedule. They will be expected to serve Sunday mornings between 8:30 AM -12 PM regularly (when not on vacation) in addition to special services. Special services include additional services during Advent (December) and Lent (February/March/April), as well as Christmas Eve and Easter morning. 

Hours & Compensation:

  • Up to 20 hours per week (with an average week consisting of 15 hours)

  • $26,000 salary

  • Four weeks paid vacation including four Sundays off

Reporting Structure: 

The Music Director meets weekly with their supervisor (Lead Pastor) in a worship planning meeting, attends one-on-one planning meetings as needed, and meets with their assigned Personnel Committee member at least once a year to discuss the position and any changes or supports that the Music Director might find helpful. 

Status: Part Time        FLSA Category: Non-Exempt

FCS is an equal opportunity employer, and seeks to recruit, hire, and provide opportunities for advancement without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, pregnancy, age, national origin or ancestry, physical or mental disability, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, genetic information, marital or civil union status, military service, citizenship, or any other characteristics and traits protected under applicable federal, state, or local law. This policy applies to all terms and conditions of employment, including recruiting, hiring, placement, promotion, termination, layoff, recall, transfer, leaves of absence, compensation, and training

Location: First Congregational Church Somerville UCC

Contact: Rev. Jenn Macy

Address: 89 College Avenue Somerville MA 02144

Phone: 617-625-6485

Email: Click to email


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