Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Interim Worship Arts Director

I love how God works. He never ceases to amaze me. Over a year ago God brought a young man to us named Matt McElravy who interned under Bryan Nelson in our Worship Arts Ministry as part of his degree completion with Millersville University. We were so impressed with the person, passion, gifts and talents of Matt that we asked him to stay on as our part-time Assistant Music Director back in August of 2006.

Since that time Matt has overseen and coordinated the weekly activities of our Worship Arts Ministry here at Grace. He has organized our instrumental and vocal bands in both their rehearsals and our worship service settings. He has worked with the media production team to produce the audio/video components of our worship services. Matt has done a superb job in all of these areas. He has also become the consistent leader of our worship each Sunday which has been a very good thing for our church.

With Bryan Nelson’s leaving in April to become the Worship Arts Director in Topeka, Kansas, I have asked Matt to take the role of Interim Worship Arts Director here at Grace Church. This will be a full-time position that will officially begin Easter Sunday, April 8th and last through the end of the calendar year (December 31, 2007). I have also asked Matt between now and then to increase his Assistant Music Director hours beyond part-time so that he can learn and benefit from as much time with Bryan as possible before Bryan, Lisa and their precious kids move west.

Matt has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music Business and Technology from Millersville University where he carried a 3.8 GPA on a 4.0 scale. His course work included Classical and Popular Music Business; Creative Skills; Conducting; Business Writing; Financial and Managerial Accounting; and 8 semesters of Piano Study. In May 2006, Matt was the recipient of the Millersville University Music Faculty Award. He is also the Founder of the Millersville University Songwriters of which he was President from 2003-2005.

Before coming to Grace, Matt served as the worship leader at DOVE Westgate and DOVE Newport on a regular basis, organizing bands and selecting music for services. He directed instrumentalists and vocalists for the University Christian Fellowship while at Millersville University. He acted as a part-time leader at The Christian Centre in Glasgow, Scotland during the Spring of 2005 while studying abroad.

Matt recorded keyboards and vocals on the DCFI Music For Small Groups Vol. 1 Worship CD. He has played piano, keyboards, guitars and done vocals for numerous local and regional worship services and conferences. He has also written original songs as well as vocal and instrumental arrangements for congregational worship. Matt has also had frequent public speaking experience in various settings.

Most of all, Matt has a heart for God. I have truly enjoyed his partnership in ministry in the office and on Sunday mornings. Please join me in welcoming Matt with open arms and with our encouragement and prayer support as he takes on this new role with us.

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