PAM CERTIFICATION LEVELS & REQUIREMENTS

Certification is an important step in professional development and recognition within the church. The Presbyterian Association of Musicians hopes that all pastors and sessions will encourage musicians to work toward achieving this goal.

 

PAM offers three levels of certification for professional church musicians:

 

Certified Colleague in Church Music (CCCM)

No academic degree requirement. A minimum of 4 years experience as a church musician is required.

 

Certified Associate Church Musician (CACM)

A Bachelor's degree from an accredited college with a major in music or 10 years experience as a church musician is required.

 

Certified Church Musician (CCM)

A Master's or Doctoral degree in music or 20 years experience as a church musician is required.

 

 

It is our vision that professional church musicians will seek certification and be recognized personally, professionally and as an integral voice in ministry within individual congregations and in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.).

 

The Presbyterian Association of Musicians is extremely proud of those who are certified and those who are in the process of obtaining certification. We look forward to providing encouragement, assistance, and guidance along the way. Our Membership Development Committee will gladly address questions and concerns that may arise during the pursuit of certification.

 

It is our goal that this process be robust, fulfilling, and professionally challenging. We believe that those pursuing certification will grow in their personal faith, in their understanding of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), and in their professional ability to lead the people of God in worship.

CERTIFICATION PROCESS:

  1. Submit the certification application.

  2. The National Office will acknowledge the application and verify PAM membership.

  3. The Membership Development Committee will assign a certified person from the membership of PAM to serve as a mentor to work with the applicant through the process.

  4. Complete the activities required for the desired and appropriate level of certification, gather appropriate documentation of prescribed activities. Certification requirements must be completed within five (5) years of initial application.

  5. Submit a completed application with original written work and documentation of prescribed activities.

  6. Application will be evaluated by the Membership Development Committee, at least one other certified member of PAM, and the Executive Director.

  7. Applicant, along with the applicant's pastor, Clerk of Session, and Presbytery will be informed of successful completion.

  8. Active PAM membership is a requirement for the consideration of an application and the awarding of certification.

CERTIFICATION RESOURCES:

 

 

 

CERTIFICATION REQUIREMENTS:

 

Certified Colleague in Church Music (CCCM) Requirements:

  • Must be currently working in or for a PC(USA) Congregation

  • Must be a member of PAM

  • Must demonstrate a commitment to church’s ministry and mission

  • Must document at least four years of work experience in a PC(USA) congregation.

  • Must be committed to continuing education [participation in professional, community, denominational, and/or ecumenical groups and events]

  • Must submit a 10-minute video recording demonstrating ability to play a hymn, anthem, prelude or postlude on piano, organ, or the applicant's primary instrument. If a conductor, the applicant will submit a video demonstrating ability to rehearse and conduct an anthem. Conductors will also submit a list of representative repertoire selections of various genres and historical eras that the applicant has prepared.

  • Complete Sections I - IV below

 

SECTION I          The Bible and Reformed Worship:

1. Documented participation in at least 30 hours of workshops or classes that address aspects of creative worship planning and leadership.

  • No more than 15 class hours may be accumulated at one conference

  • Topics studied should include: Hymnology/Psalmody; Book of Common Worship, The Psalter, Presbyterian Hymnals, and use of the lectionary in planning worship

  1. Attendance at worship services and worship discussion sessions at PAM-related conferences.

  2. Participation in a local or online Bible survey course. Disciple Bible Study, Kerygma, or online courses such as the "Be A Disciple" curriculum are recommended, but there are certainly others that will meet this requirement.

  3. An original essay on the subject of “The Role of Music and the Scripture in Reformed Worship”.

 

SECTION II         Human Faith and Development:

 

  1. Participation in at least five hours of workshops or classes that address aspects of staff relationships, employment in the ministry of music and professional concerns.

  2. Read at least one book in the Music Ministry section of Suggested Resources in Church Music and Related Fields and write an essay responding to and reflecting on the content of the book selected.

  3. Write an essay describing your role as a church musician as it relates to the wider ministry of the church.

 

SECTION III         Polity of the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.

 

  1. Familiarize yourself with the contents of The Book of Confessions (most current edition) and read the Book of Order, giving particular attention to the Form of Government (G) and the Directory for Worship (W).

  2. Write an essay expressing your understanding of the Presbyterian form of government, of the organization of the local congregation and the lines of authority as your role relates to a particular church.

 

SECTION IV          Continuing Education in Your Area of Expertise

(organists, conductors, pianists, guitarists, vocalists)

  1. Participate in at least 15 class hours of workshops in your area of specialization.

  2. Participate in PAM conference activities in your area of specialization.

  3. If possible, participate in a local ensemble.

  4. Demonstrate continued growth in an area of mastery or specialization.

 

Alternative Option for Certified Colleague in Church Music [CCCM]

  • Completion of two-year Leadership Program for Musicians [LPM]
    Presbyterian-specific course work. Details can be viewed on the website: https://liturgyandmusic.com/resources/leadership-program-for-musicians/

  • Must be working in a in or for a PC(USA) congregation

  • Must be a member of PAM

  • Must show a commitment to church’s ministry and mission

  • Must show commitment to continuing education [participation in professional, community, denominational, and/or ecumenical groups and events]

Certified Associate Church Musician (CACM) Requirements:

 

  • Must be currently working in or for a PC(USA) congregation

  • Must be a member of PAM

  • Must demonstrate a commitment to church’s ministry and mission

  • Must hold at least a bachelor's degree in music or be able to document a minimum of 10 years experience as a church musician.

  • Must be committed to continuing education [participation in professional, community, denominational, and/or ecumenical groups and events]

  • Must submit a 10-minute video recording demonstrating ability to play a hymn, anthem, prelude or postlude on piano, organ, on the applicant's primary instrument. If a conductor, the applicant will submit a video demonstrating ability to rehearse and conduct an anthem. Conductors will also submit a list of representative repertoire selections of various genres and historical eras that the applicant has prepared.

  • Complete Sections I - IV below

 

SECTION I          The Bible and Reformed Worship:

1. Documented participation in at least 30 hours of workshops or classes that address aspects of creative worship planning and leadership.

  • No more than 15 class hours may be accumulated at one conference

  • Topics studied should include: Hymnology/Psalmody; Book of Common Worship, The Psalter, Presbyterian Hymnals, and use of the lectionary in planning worship

2.  Attendance at worship services and worship discussion sessions at PAM-related conferences.

3.  Participation in a local or online Bible survey course. Disciple Bible

    Study, Kerygma, or online courses such as the "Be A Disciple" curriculum are recommended, but there are certainly others that will meet this requirement.

4.  An original essay on the subject of “The Role of Music and the Scripture in Reformed Worship”.

 

SECTION II         Human Faith and Development

 

1. Participation in at least five hours of workshops or classes that address

    aspects of staff relationships, employment in the ministry of music and professional concerns.

2. Read at least one book in the Music Ministry section of “Suggested Resources in Church Music and Related Fields” (available from the PAM National Office) and write an essay responding to and reflecting on the content of the book selected.

3. Write an essay describing your role as a church musician as it relates to the wider ministry of the church.

 

SECTION III         Polity of the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.

 

  1. Familiarize yourself with the contents of The Book of Confessions (most current edition) and read the Book of Order, giving particular attention to the Form of Government (G) and the Directory for Worship (W).

  2. Write an essay expressing your understanding of the Presbyterian form of government, of the organization of the local congregation and the lines of authority as your role relates to a particular church.

 

SECTION IV          Continuing Education in Your Area of Expertise

(organists, conductors, pianists, guitarists, vocalists)

1. Participate in at least 15 class hours of workshops in your area of   specialization.

2. Participate in PAM conference activities in your area of specialization.

3. If possible, participate in a local ensemble.

4. Demonstrate continued growth in an area of mastery or specialization.

 

Certified Church Musician (CCM) Requirements:

  • Must be currently working in or for a PC(USA) congregation

  • Must be a member of PAM

  • Must demonstrate a commitment to church’s ministry and mission

  • Must hold at least a master's or doctoral degree in music or be able to document a minimum of 20 years experience as a church musician.

  • Must be committed to continuing education [participation in professional, community, denominational, and/or ecumenical groups and events]

  • Must submit a 10-minute video recording demonstrating ability to play a hymn, anthem, prelude or postlude on piano, organ, on the applicant's primary instrument. If a conductor, the applicant will submit a video demonstrating ability to rehearse and conduct an anthem. Conductors will also submit a list of representative repertoire selections of various genres and historical eras that the applicant has prepared.

  • Complete Sections I - IV below

 

 

SECTION I          The Bible and Reformed Worship:

 

1. Documented participation in at least 30 hours of workshops or classes that address aspects of creative worship planning and leadership.

  • No more than 15 class hours may be accumulated at one conference

  • Topics studied should include: Hymnology/Psalmody; Book of Common Worship, The Psalter, Presbyterian Hymnals, and use of the lectionary in planning worship

2.  Attendance at worship services and worship discussion sessions at PAM-related conferences.

3.  Participation in a local or online Bible survey course. Disciple Bible

    Study, Kerygma, or online courses such as the "Be A Disciple" curriculum are recommended, but there are certainly others that will meet this requirement.

4.  An original essay on the subject of “The Role of Music and the Scripture in Reformed Worship”.

 

SECTION II         Human Faith and Development

 

1. Participation in at least five hours of workshops or classes that address

    aspects of staff relationships, employment in the ministry of music and professional concerns.

2. Read at least one book in the Music Ministry section of “Suggested Resources in Church Music and Related Fields” (available from the PAM National Office) and write an essay responding to and reflecting on the content of the book selected.

3. Write an essay describing your role as a church musician as it relates   to the wider ministry of the church.

 

SECTION III         Polity of the Presbyterian Church, U.S.A.

 

  1. Familiarize yourself with the contents of The Book of Confessions (most current edition) and read the Book of Order, giving particular attention to the Form of Government (G) and the Directory for Worship (W).

  2. Write an essay expressing your understanding of the Presbyterian form of government, of the organization of the local congregation and the lines of authority as your role relates to a particular church.

 

SECTION IV          Continuing Education in Your Area of Expertise

(organists, conductors, pianists, guitarists, vocalists)

1. Participate in at least 15 class hours of workshops in your area of specialization.

2. Participate in PAM conference activities in your area of specialization.

3. If possible, participate in a local ensemble.

4. Demonstrate continued growth in an area of mastery or specialization.

 
Procedure for all candidates to complete certification process:

  1. Obtain letters verifying degrees and courses completed or certified transcripts from colleges, universities or seminaries.

  2. Complete PAM certification verification forms for each conference attended, listing and validating courses attended.

  3. Prepare DVD or flash drive with required elements (Candidates applying for CCCM status who have completed the LPM program are exempt from this requirement.)

  4. Complete the four essay questions. (Candidates applying for CCCM status who have completed the LPM program are exempt from this requirement.)

  5. Submit items #1-4 above, when completed, to the PAM Office:

 

Presbyterian Association of Musicians
100 Witherspoon Street
Louisville, KY 40202

 

All Items should be submitted together when the work is completed.

 

The PAM Membership Development Committee, in consultation with at least one certified member of the organization and the Executive Director will recommend the applicant for final approval to the Executive Board of PAM. A successful candidate will be presented with a CCM, CACM or CCCM certificate. Persons receiving certification who are employed by, but are not members of the Presbyterian Church U.S.A., should be aware that presbyteries will not ordinarily grant privilege of voice to individuals who are not members of the denomination.

 

 

 

From the PC(USA) Form of Government, adopted in July 2011

G-­2.11   CERTIFIED CHURCH SERVICE

 

G-­2.1101   Forms of Certified Church Service

Persons may be certified and called to service within congregations, councils, and church-related entities, serving in staff positions.  These individuals endeavor to reflect their faith through their work and to strengthen the church through their dedication. They should be encouraged by their session and presbytery to meet, or be prepared to meet, the certification requirements in a handbook provided by a national certifying body approved by the General Assembly. Names of those who have earned certification through a national certifying body shall be transmitted to the appropriate body of the General Assembly, which will forward them to the stated clerk of the presbyteries in which those persons labor.

 

G-­2.1102   Presbytery and Certified Church Service
The presbytery shall encourage sessions to make continuing education funds and time available to those seeking certification, and shall affirm the skill and dedication of these certified persons by providing a service of recognition at the time of certification. The presbytery may grant the privilege of voice at all its meetings to persons in certified church service.

 
PAM will notify your Pastor, Clerk of Session and Stated Clerk of the Presbytery when certification and renewal are granted.

Certification

Application

ABOUT US

The Presbyterian Association of Musicians believes that formative and collaborative experiences with God and neighbor nurture relationships and create community.

 

PAM is a national organization of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) for people who are involved in the areas of worship, music, and the arts.

CONTACT

502-569-5288

 

100 Witherspoon Street
Louisville, KY 40202

 

pam@pcusa.org

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