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St. John’s runs on volunteers.  To find out more about supporting St. John’s with your volunteer hours, contact us at 860.767.8095 ext 10.




St. John’s Episcopal Church Essex, CT Seeks Music Director

St. John’s Episcopal Church in Essex, CT seeks an accomplished musician and energetic leader to serve as its next Music Director and Organist. The Music Director, in partnership with our rector, The Rev. Kate Wesch, will shape St. John’s music ministry, creating an inclusive and inspirational music program that enhances liturgy and worship, and engages the congregation and community. This individual will lead us in a variety of music, helping us honor the traditional Anglican repertoire while exploring and introducing us to new expressions of music.

Key requirements of this half-time (24 hours) role include:

• Plan and provide music for weekly Sunday worship (10:15 AM and 5:00 PM), the principal feasts of the Church, and occasional special events, engaging soloists and instrumentalists as needed.

• Plan, schedule and lead rehearsals of St. John’s choir. Motivate, guide, and challenge participants of varied skill levels, encouraging participation by people of all ages.

• Explore, create and implement new and diverse musical offerings to energize and inspire existing and new congregants, youth and children.

• Administer St. John’s music program, including but not limited to: weekly submission of music details for service bulletins, preparation of an annual budget, purchase of music and other materials as required, arranging for instrument maintenance, and securing substitute organists in case of an absence.

Required skills and experience:

• Bachelor of Music or Bachelor of Arts in Music Experience

• Accomplished organist and pianist who is experienced in providing music in a liturgical setting. Familiarity with Anglican liturgy is preferred, but not required.

• Proven experience leading and developing choirs composed of members with varied abilities.

• A desire to be an integral part of a collaborative team seeking to explore ministries to which the Holy Spirit is calling the people of St. John’s.

• A collegial disposition with superior communication and administrative skills. Compensation includes a salary ranging from $27,000 to $32,000 depending on education and experience, 4 weeks vacation, a pension, and support for career development. Additional compensation is provided for wedding and funerals.

Interested candidates are requested to submit a resume, cover letter and sample recording or link to a recorded service to musicsearch@stjohnsessex.org. The deadline for submissions is 5:00 p.m. EST on Monday, November 22, 2021.


About St. John’s 

St. John’s is a mid-sized parish of the Episcopal Church in Connecticut. We are located in Essex, a scenic and historic town on the lower Connecticut River. We called The Rev. Kate Wesch as our new rector in early 2021 and together, we are exploring where the Holy Spirit is calling us to serve in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic and the broader changes in the Church and world. St. John’s has established relationships with local organizations focusing on food insecurity, affordable housing, and veterans’ well-being. We also have international partnerships with Sister Cities Essex Haiti and the Diocese of Lebombo in Mozambique. 

Music has long been an integral part of our worship at St. John’s, setting an appropriate mood and complementing the spoken and visual dimensions of the liturgy. Our volunteer choir of about a dozen, including a paid soloist and section leader, sings at the 10:15 AM Sunday service. We have recently added a 5 PM “come-as-you-are” service with more contemporary liturgy and varied music. Our annual Service of Nine Lessons and Carols has been a highlight of the Advent season in Essex, attracting guests from the broader community. St. John’s also has a rich tradition of engaging guest instrumentalists ranging from local orchestra and Coast Guard Band to our own children. 

The Organ 

St. John’s is home to a Noack Organ, Opus 18. The Noack consists of two manuals and pedal on a reversed keydesk. The two manual keyboards contain 56 notes, and the pedals contain 32 notes on an AGO-standard pedalboard. This organ features both mechanical key and stop action, with drawknobs on either side of the keyboards. The stoplist is as follows: 

• Great: 8′ Principal, 8′ Spitzflöte, 4′ Octave, 2′ Blockflöte, IV Mixture 

• Choir: 8′ Gedackt, 4′ Rohrflöte, 2′ Principal, 1 1/3′ Larigot 

• Pedal: 16′ Subbass 

• Couplers: Choir to Great, Great to Pedal, Choir to Pedal 

Other Instruments 

• 2 spinet pianos 

• A Roland NX300 electronic keyboard with an 88-note weighted keybed 

• A set of Schulmerich handbells 

• Yamaha 2.5 octave orchestra bells 

• Various drums and other small percussion instruments