Music Ministry


Position Description for Choir Director/Organist at St. John Neumann Parish 

Summary:  Directs and coordinates an excellent and comprehensive music and choral program for liturgies at St. John Neumann Parish. Accompanies on organ and/or piano at weekend Masses, Holy Days, and other special liturgies.

Weekly Responsibilities:

  • Develop and support ongoing congregational singing
  • Lead choral music program for the 10 a.m. Mass
  • Schedule, train and rehearse cantors for all Masses
  • Direct and provide accompaniment for choir rehearsal on Wednesday evenings from mid-August to mid-June
  • Direct and provide accompaniment for the choir at the 10:00 a.m. liturgy on Sundays from mid-August to mid-June
  • Accompany cantors on organ/piano at Saturday 5:15 p.m. and Sunday 8:00 and 10:00 a.m. Masses year-round
  • Direct and accompany children’s choir at the 5:15 p.m. Saturday Mass twice a month during the school year with practice weekly during the school year
  • Accompany school Mass twice a month during the school year
  • Prepare a budget for music and present it to the Finance Council
  • Utilize prayer, social interaction, and other ways to communicate to retain and inspire within the music ministry a caring and Christ-centered sense of mission
  • Ensure all safe environment policies of the Diocese of Charleston are implemented within all programs managed by the Director of Music at St. John Neumann Parish
    • Ensure Safe Haven training and background checks for volunteers who work with children and vulnerable adults
    • Model personally and ensure volunteers know and practice all policies and procedures that ensure a safe environment 

Other Responsibilities:

  • Practice with and direct the choir for special feast days, including Christmas, Holy Days of Obligation, Holy Week, and sacramental celebrations
  • Maintain well-organized library and distribute music as needed to choirs/cantors (using iPads for main choir and cantors)
  • Create occasional musical programs that offer spiritual and artistic enrichment for the parish outside of the liturgical setting (e.g. an Advent/Christmas choral program, concerts)
  • Work as a team with other staff and volunteers who prepare sacramental celebrations
  • Collaborate with the Director of Prayer and Worship in the development of worship aids when needed
  • Schedule substitute musicians as needed
  • Work with additional instrumentalists for special liturgies
  • Recruit, train, and supervise new volunteer musicians and singers
  • Attend regularly scheduled staff meetings
  • Other tasks as assigned by the Pastor 

Additional Roles Remunerated Separately:

  • Availability to assist with funerals—compensated by the funeral home
  • Availability to assist with weddings—contracted by the couple 


  • A degree in music preferred and/or extensive music ministry experience
  • Excellent piano/organ, choral/cantor conducting, and arranging skills
  • Knowledge and facility in various music styles (standard, traditional, chant, contemporary, gospel, praise and worship)
  • Comprehensive knowledge of Roman Catholic liturgy
  • Working knowledge of sound and video systems


Salary commensurate with experience
Annual leave per Diocese of Charleston policy
4 weekends off per year  
Health and Retirement benefits
$1500 allowance for continuing education



 Liturgical Music

Sing joyfully to God our strength;
shout in triumph to the God of Jacob!
Take up a melody, sound the timbrel,
the sweet-sounding lyre and harp.
Blow the trumpet at the new moon,
at the full moon, on our solemn feast.

Psalm 81

Music Serves the Expression of Faith

Among the many signs and symbols used by the Church to celebrate its faith, music is of preeminent importance. 'As sacred song united to words it forms a necessary or integral part of the solemn liturgy.'  Yet the function of music is ministerial; it must serve and never dominate. Music should assist the assembled believers to express and share the gift of faith that is within them and to nourish and strengthen their interior commitment of faith. It should heighten the texts so that they speak more fully and more effectively. The quality of joy and enthusiasm which music adds to community worship cannot be gained in any other way. It imparts a sense of unity to the congregation and sets the appropriate tone for a particular celebration.  (Music in Catholic Worship, #23) 

 In addition to expressing texts, music can also unveil a dimension of meaning and feeling, a communication of ideas and intuitions, which words alone cannot yield. This dimension is integral to the human personality and to growth in faith. It cannot be ignored if the signs of worship are to speak to the whole person. Ideally, every communal celebration of faith, including funerals and the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, penance, anointing, and matrimony, should include music and singing. Where it is possible to celebrate the Liturgy of the Hours in a community, it, too, should include music.  #24

Regarding the gift of musicians, Pope John Paul II wrote in his beautiful Letter to Artists: “How many sacred works have been composed through the centuries by people deeply imbued with the sense of the mystery! The faith of countless believers has been nourished by melodies flowing from the hearts of other believers, either introduced into the liturgy or used as an aid to dignified worship. In song, faith is experienced as vibrant joy, love, and confident expectation of the saving intervention of God.”