East, West Coast musicians to direct 2008 General Conference
June 5, 2006
TAMPA, Fla. (UMNS) -- Two prominent United Methodist musicians
from California and New Jersey have been named co-music directors for
the denomination’s 2008 General Conference in Fort Worth, Texas.
The denomination’s top legislative assembly top legislative
assembly will meet April 23-May 2, 2008. The 1,000-member international
body meets every four years to decide issues of church law and polity.
Marcia McFee of Truckee, Calif., and Mark Miller of Plainfield,
N.J., were selected by the Commission on the General Conference, which
met May 23-25 in Tampa.
“They have an exciting, creative, spirit-filled plan for worship
and music at General Conference,” said Lane Cotton Winn of Atlanta, a
commission member and vice chairwoman of the interview selection team.
The Rev. Gail Murphy-Geiss, chairwoman of the commission, said
there is precedent for naming co-directors. The 1996 General Conference
in Denver had co-directors of music. Murphy-Geiss said McFee and Miller
originally made separate applications for the position, but after
conversations with each other, they submitted a plan for co-directors.
McFee is the principal of Peace by Peace Productions, where she
serves as a consultant on worship, arts, and preaching. She has
preached, taught and led worship at numerous United Methodist gatherings
in the United States, Europe and Asia.
In addition to consulting on worship, music and dance, McFee has
been a guest lecturer on worship at six United Methodist seminaries and
is the author of The Worship Workshop: Creative Ways to Design Worship
Together, a book for worship teams and published by Abingdon Press. She
earned a doctorate degree in liturgical studies from the Graduate
Theological Union at the University of California, Berkley; a master’s
degree in theological studies from Saint Paul School of Theology, Kansas
City, Mo.; and a bachelor’s degree in dance education from New York
University. She is a recipient of the Hoyt Hickman Award for scholarship
in the study of liturgy and effective worship leadership.
|A UMNS file photo by Mike DuBose
of the Mass Choir sing a hymn during the opening worship of the United
Methodist Church's 2004 General Conference in Pittsburgh.
Miller is well known throughout the United Methodist connection
as a worship leader, teacher and performer of sacred music. He is
director of music and instructor of church music at the Drew Theological
School, Madison, N.J. He also serves as the director of contemporary
worship at Marble Collegiate Church in New York City and is a lecturer
at the Institute of Sacred Music at Yale University, New Haven, Conn. He
has directed music for numerous United Methodist annual conferences and
youth events. He has composed a number of hymns, including a
collection, Amazing Abundance, Hymns for a Growing Church, published by
He received a master’s of music degree in organ performance from
the Juilliard School in New York and a bachelor’s degree in music from
The music directors will work with the Council of Bishops and
staff from the United Methodist Board of Discipleship to plan worship
services for the General Conference, lead hymn singing, coordinate
additional music performances and venues, and audition and select vocal
and instrumental musicians for the conference.
News media contact: Linda Green, UMNS, (615) 742-5470, or firstname.lastname@example.org; or Stephen Drachler, Public Information, (615) 742-5411 or email@example.com.
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