Evaluating Advertisements
  • Seeing that the contemporary group does music for the 10:30 Mass and the choir sings at 8:45 is not a good sign.

    Reference made to the great work done in the renovation of the sanctuary by a carpet company, also a bad sign.

    What do you see as red flags when you read listings that would help others in understanding what the signs are?

    Your comments can assist priests in putting a proper "spin" on their ad, avoiding pitfalls.

    The word "vibrant" alone deserves a very special red flag.

  • Other bad signs -

    Waxing proudly about their 9' (or 8' or 6' foot) grand piano.
    If they crow about in being a Steinway, that means that they have lots of money and will spend it on most anything but an organ.
  • Kathy
    Posts: 5,299
    Dynamic, vibrant, Spirit of VII.
    Thanked by 1CharlesW
  • "Community"
    "Work as a team player"
    "Reports to the Liturgy Committee"
  • musiclover88
    Posts: 156
    No experience required- just a willingness to joyfully serve the Lord
  • irishtenoririshtenor
    Posts: 1,195
    I saw one recently that mentioned (I'm paraphrasing) "selecting music that reflects Vatican II theology"

    186 x 186 - 8K
  • Ability to read music helpful.

    I actually saw an advertisement that said that!
    (It was Catholic - as if it could be anything else.)
    Thanked by 2CharlesW francis
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,273
    It's another kind of red flag if they don't dare add "vibrant" ;-)
  • musiclover88
    Posts: 156
    Saying “the Sunday Experience” instead of “Mass”
    Thanked by 1cmb
  • matthewjmatthewj
    Posts: 2,662
    Remember that some priests just tell their secretaries to use whatever ad they used the last time the position was open 10 years ago. This doesn't necessarily mean that music isn't a priority for them - just that writing job advertisements definitely isn't a priority.
    Thanked by 3MNadalin cmb BruceL
  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 934
    @musiclover88 - Some churches have 'extracurricular' activities after Mass that also require music.
  • As seen in a recent job posting:
    "The self-titled 'Youthful Choir' sings one Sunday per month. They were youthful about 20 years ago."
  • NihilNominisNihilNominis
    Posts: 620
    Instrument optionality... "piano, organ, guitar, or other appropriate instrument."
  • rogue63
    Posts: 410

    On the other hand, a willingness to delegate advertisting a ministerial position to a 10-year-old recycled ad already says something about how important music is this pastor. If the ad is well-written, the hire is intentional. If the ad is boilerplate, so will the job be.
  • doneill
    Posts: 195
    "We are a Vatican II parish," as if there is any other choice in the Novus Ordo (code: none of that Latin chant stuff).
  • If "Life Teen" is anywhere in the parish's self description, or in your job description.
    Thanked by 1CCooze
  • GambaGamba
    Posts: 322
    “Salary commensurate with experience/salary aligned with diocesan guidelines/generous salary and spiffy benefits” or other weasel words.

    If you want a candidate with a BMus or MMus or M.Ed. or DMA or fifteen years’ experience in a cathedral or otherwise, say so explicitly, and honestly say what’s being offered. If you don’t care and don’t say, the program probably is lousy. Candidates with half a brain can check their CV and figure out if they meet the qualifications, and then consider whether they want to move cross-country for $30k and 60 hours a week before they send an email or call and waste everyone’s time.
    Thanked by 2irishtenor dmandalak
  • GambaGamba
    Posts: 322
    “A variety of music, from Gregorian chant to songs from today’s gifted leaders” also speaks volumes, as opposed to “Gregorian chant, sacred polyphony, and organ music”, which reflects an understating of those three as specifically sanctioned by V2, and part of the Tradition.
    Thanked by 2irishtenor Carol
  • doneill
    Posts: 195
    "must have a love for all styles of music." I've never met anybody who fits that description.
    Thanked by 1irishtenor
  • bhcordovabhcordova
    Posts: 934
    Does that include Rap & Hip-Hop?
    Thanked by 2Carol dmandalak
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,223
    In Massachusetts starting next month, employers will forbidden to directly or indirectly discuss or raise compensation history with prospective job applicants until an offer of employment has been made. Will definitely need to scrub old advert boilerplate....

    See Section 7 in the link: https://www.mass.gov/files/documents/2018/05/02/AGO Equal Pay Act Guidance (5-2-18).pdf

    (This has been true in New York City since last fall. Other jurisdictions may well follow in their wake.)
  • >> "must have a love for all styles of music."

    "Stairway to Heaven"?
    Thanked by 1Carol
  • jcr
    Posts: 93
    One must exercise caution. My wife and I responded to an ad that said that the applicant must be fluent in Latin and able to lead plainchant (Gregorian chant in particular). It turned out that the pastor had no such desire, but had a parishioner who had told him to advertise that way. The parish was a mess, the program was worse, there was a resident prima donna and more that was impossible to work with. We bailed in a short time. the parish closed a few months later.
  • No doubt, JCR, it was the fault of bringing onboard someone who liked chant?
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 9,278
    Must be proficient at the keyboard.
  • kevinfkevinf
    Posts: 1,126
    I'm at present helping three priests prepare adverts for their positions. They sent their drafts to me and I was horrified. All the buzzwords that "conservatives" want to see were there. Except they were not true. They wanted these things (i.e. chant, Latin,etc.) but did not have them. I sent them all back with revisions that stated they wanted these things but were not in place at this time.

    Needless to say, most pastors are exceptionally clueless about these matters or they want to engage in a type of fraud. They did not understand how carefully these ads are read for what they say or do not say.
    Thanked by 2chonak BruceL
  • jcr
    Posts: 93
    In the case I cited, it would have been difficult to ascertain just what the problem was. I think that the parish was scheduled for a merger or cluster at an undetermined time and the pastor was just marking time there, but was also frustrated with the whole mess. There is much more to the whole story, but not all of interest here.