Is it OK to work playing music for a Protestant church?


Hi, and thanks for reading my question. I am a practicing Catholic, but over the years have assisted as an organist at a variety of churches, both Catholic and protestant. I always fulfill my Sunday obligation and attend Mass during the weekend with my family, in addition to any services I may provide to another church.

I have no problem of conscience when I play on a substitute basis for any church, any denomination. When I have played as a regular organist for protestant churches, though, I inevitably leave within a year or two because I begin to question whether I really should be fulfilling a musician role week after week for a church that I really cannot be fully commit to in faith. I know many organists who are able to do this, and they seem to have no problem with it - wherever they can find a musically-satisfying position with a salary they are comfortable with, they are fine regardless of the denomination. It never works for me, though!

I realize that if I am not comfortable, I need to make the personal choice to avoid this situation. It is frustrating, though, because too frequently, the jobs that actually pay a reasonable salary AND actually appreciate good sacred music are usually the protestant ones! So my question is, am I simply overthinking things, and would it would be OK to work for a Protestant church so long as I never misrepresent myself as anything other than Catholic AND continue to fulfill my Catholic obligations, or is there a concrete magisterial reason why I should not accept such a position?




You are not the first musician to face this dilemma. These links should help guide you. If you have any further questions or concerns that are not answered by these links, please contact Catholic Answers directly.

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Is it permissible to play music for Protestant services?

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