Dear St. Cecilia,

Where have you been?   Signed, Wondering

Dear Wondering,

Thanks for asking. I think I got lost in the transition from print to electronic production of the Grace Notes newsletter. Sometimes these things happen. You wake up one morning, and the 21st Century has left you behind. That doesn’t mean there is no need for you or for what you do, just that you need to get with the new program. After a few false starts at inviting people to write to Dear St. Cecilia on the website, the Board of the ALCM asked me to restart Dear St. Cecilia and join the online services of the webpage. So here I am, ready to offer help to our ALCM membership.

Just to reacquaint the longer-term membership, and to introduce Dear St. Cecilia to any new members, Dear St. Cecilia is an advice column for church musicians and pastors in our organization. As the introduction to the print format read:  Got a problem? Don’t know how to handle a situation with a choir member, a parishioner, a pastor, or a colleague? Why not ask “Dear St. Cecilia?” All inquiries and concerns should be sent to Ron Koch by email at or by snail mail to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church; 1735 Hecker Pass Highway; Gilroy, CA 95020. Telephone calls are also welcome at (408) 842-2713. All “Dear St. Cecilia” inquiries and concerns will remain anonymous and confidential.

I am an ALCM member since 1995. I am also a pastor, a musician, and choir director as well as a California Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (LMFT). When I need another perspective for a problem, I consult with my church musician at Good Shepherd, Zita Weyland. She is a charter member of ALCM and gives the musician’s perspective. While I may share the situations in your mail inquiries with her, you will remain anonymous.

Here is your invitation.  Let’s hear from you.

God’s peace be with you.

Ron Koch (aka St. Cecilia)