Bachelor of Arts inChurch Music

Majoring in Church Music involves studying the history, theory, writing and performance of religious music. In addition to musical training, you’ll gain experience leading various styles of worship, such as the services with traditional hymns, praise band-led services, Taizé contemplative acoustic services, ancient chant services, multimedia worship services and global music in worship. You’ll gain knowledge and skills that are important for any music ministry area as you take 48 to 52 credit hours towards a Bachelor of Arts degree.

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Church Music Curriculum Overview

While the Church Music major enjoys all of the features
of the Music program in general, the Church Music major has the following more specific features:
(a) there are organ, choral, piano, guitar, instrumental, composition, and generalist tracks, thus equipping students to lead both traditional liturgies and contemporary worship formats.
(b) each track shares the core musicianship (music theory/analysis/writing/ear-training/keyboard harmony) and music history courses. Private lessons and ensembles applicable to each track are also part of the core.
(c) each track has specialized courses, culminating in a senior project/recital in the track.
(d) the program culminates in a two-credit internship in a church (done while the student is attending school) in a metro area church.
(e) students may add Director of Parish Music Certification by completing the Confessional Lutheranism minor, completing a portfolio, and passing the entrance and exit interviews. This leads to rostered church worker status as a Commissioned Minister in The Lutheran Church-Missouri Synod.

With several tracks available, the Director of Parish Music certification at Concordia allows students to pursue music ministry in the area that best suits their interests and talents.


Bachelor of Arts degrees at Concordia University, St. Paul consists of a major of typically 32 to 44 credits or two minors, general education courses, and elective courses totaling a minimum of 128 credits.

Meet Your Professors

Dr. David Lumpp Professor of Theology and Ministry

Dr. Lumpp's areas of professional expertise are primarily in systematic and historical theology.

Dr. Rhoda Schuler Term Faculty in Religion

Dr. Schuler’s research passions are liturgical theology and ritual studies, which she views as more than academic disciplines.

Dr. Mark Schuler Department of Theology and Ministry Chairperson, Professor of Theology

Schuler passes on his passion for Biblical Greek and the New Testament to Concordia students in the classroom.

Dr. David Mennicke Professor of Music, Director of Choral Studies, Music Department Chair

Dr. Mennicke's teaching expertise covers choral conducting, voice training, music education, church music, musical theatre, and music arranging.

Shari Speer Term Faculty in Music

Shari is professor of voice at Concordia, where she maintains an active voice studio, teaches class voice, diction, opera workshop and conducts the Jubilate Choir.

Monica Murray Associate Professor of Music

Dr. Murray is an active performer in the Twin Cities.

Nathan Kennedy Term Faculty of Music

Nathan Kennedy teaches the music theory sequence, applied and class piano, pedagogy, and accompanying, and accompanies the choirs and opera workshop.

Career Potential

You’ll also have real opportunities to learn beyond the classroom by participating in instrumental groups (such as the Concert Band, Jazz Band, Percussion Ensemble, Guitar Ensemble, String Ensemble, Handbell Ensemble, Musical Theatre Pit Orchestra, Christmas Concert Orchestra and Chapel Band) and vocal groups (such as the Christus Chorus, Jubilate, Opera Workshop, Shades of Harmony Gospel Choir and Vocal Jazz Ensemble). Because we design our church music program to be responsive to the exact needs of the marketplace, it will be a relevant major if you’re considering a career as a church music director/teacher, composer/arranger, organist, music ensemble director or worship planner/coordinator.

  • Church Music Director
  • Classroom Music Teacher
  • Composer/Arranger
  • Music Ensemble Director
  • Organist
  • Private Music Lesson Teacher
  • Worship Planner/Coordinator

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