Precenting and Congregational Singing

by Kenny Maclean

PrecentorPraising God is an integral part of public worship which perhaps is not always given the attention it deserves. In many situations, sadly, praise has been regarded as part of the "preliminaries", despite the service having begun with the time-honoured injunction "Let us begin the public worship of God" or "Let us worship God". Although the precentor has an important duty in leading the praise of God, for effective praise the support of the congregation is crucial.

I remember our late friend, the Revd Jackie Ross, in response to the oft-quoted "It's what's in our heart that counts" and in a discussion about praise, saying that, if that is true, we will want to render the very best we can with our lips. To that end, there has been arranged a -

Conference on Precenting and Congregational Singing
Smithton-Culloden Free Church, Inverness
 the evening of Friday, 1 May, 2009
through to
 late afternoon on Saturday, 2 May, 2009

All interested will be very welcome.
The cost is only £5.00 - to cover expenses.

It should be noted that the Conference aims to improve and encourage congregational singing, as well as to help precentors (experienced or inexperienced) and prospective precentors. For the encouragement of all who are interested, assurance is given that the emphasis in all sessions will be more practical than theoretical.

The aim of the Conference is:

  • to glorify God by encouraging the highest possible level of sung praise throughout the churches, and as a means to this end, to -
  • highlight the vitally important role of precentors in leading the praise of God's people, and to offer them guidance and support in their task

A Keynote Address on Saturday forenoon will be given (d.v.) by:
 Rev. Dr Iain D Campbell on the subject "Spirit-filled Worship leading to Heart-felt Praise".

I have attended such conferences in the past and found them very instructive and helpful.

Whether you are interested in precenting (whatever stage you are at), or just interested in good congregational singing - or both -I would urge you to seriously consider attending the Conference. I am sure that you will find it enjoyable and worthwhile.

The Psalmist says in Psalm 147: "Praise the LORD! For it is good to sing praises to our God; for it is pleasant, and praise is beautiful."

Kenny Maclean, 23/04/2009

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