Music & Worship

Music Ministries


God created us in His image and desires our worship. Worship is one of the many ways that we show God our love, adoration, honor, and praise. Music and creative arts are some of the ways that we worship at Auburn UMC. Whether you are musically talented and thinking of joining a choir, or just enjoy the excellent music on Sunday mornings, we can all be involved in the music ministries of Auburn UMC!

Music Ensembles

Our choir membership is composed of all ages and skill levels with one common unity of spirit; that of proclaiming the joy of the Christian life through music. We’d love to have you join one of our choirs. Most of our choirs require no auditions. All our choirs perform a wide diversity of musical styles. Besides making great music together, you’ll discover a true sense of family within our choir membership. Please consider enriching your life by becoming active in one of our choirs here at Auburn UMC. For more information, please contact our Director of Music, Gary Klarenbeek, at 334-826-8800 or via e-mail at We look forward to welcoming you into our musical family at Auburn UMC.

Children's Choirs

Auburn UMC offers a graded choral program for ages 3 to grade 6. Age-appropriate pedagogy, healthy vocal techniques, reading of music, and memorization of spiritually and theologically sound texts are nurtured, as well as a love for singing and leading worship through song. No audition is necessary, only a commitment to attending rehearsals and singing for worship (monthly.)

For more information, contact Gary Klarenbeek at Registration is available online.


4:30-5:00pm | Cherub Choir | Ages Preschool 3 – K (must be three years old by September 1 of 2022)

5:00-5:45pm | Star Choir and Grace Notes | Grades 1-6 combined

Adult Choirs

Chancel Choir

As the largest musical group at Auburn UMC, consisting of over 90 volunteer members from all walks of life, the Chancel Choir leads worship each Sunday for the 11:00am service and presents three major performances each year. The ability to read musical scores is desired, but lessons can be provided to develop this skill. The Chancel Choir practices Thursdays from 6:30 – 8:30pm in the Choir Room.

Jubilate Singers

This select ensemble of approximately 16 singers performs a wide range of choral literature and normally sings one Sunday per month, often for the 8:00 or 9:30am traditional services. This choir is by vocal placement selection and practices on Thursdays from
6:00-7:00pm in the Choir Room.

To learn more about adult choirs at Auburn UMC, please contact Director of Music Ministries Gary Klarenbeek at 334-826-8800 or

Celebration Praise Team

Celebration Praise Team

The Celebration Praise Team is an auditioned group of vocalists and instrumentalists that lead our 9:30am “blended” worship service.

We typically practice on Wednesday evenings. If you are interested in auditioning for the Praise Band, please email Chris Kelsey.

Handbell Ensembles

The Handbell program is a unique part of the Music Ministry at Auburn United Methodist Church. We have groups for ringers of all ages and open positions are always available. Email Emily Bigler for more information about the Handbell Ministries at Auburn UMC. No prior music knowledge is necessary!

Joyful Chimes for 1st-3rd graders

In interactive ways, children are taught rhythms, reading music, listening skills, and other related skills. Using hand chimes, children provide special music for worship services throughout the year. We meet every Sunday during the school year. If you are interested, please email Emily.

Joyful Ringers for 4th-6th graders

This group has been in existence for over 20 years and continues to use handbells to learn new techniques. Children have fun in rehearsals learning how to help lead the congregation worship time and preparing for the annual Bell Festival (Road Trip). We meet Sunday evenings during the school year. If you are interested, please email Emily.

Genuine Bells for 7th-12th graders

The Genuine Bells is one of our most outstanding handbell groups. They perform for our worship services and many community events. We meet on Sunday afternoons during the school year. If you are interested, please email Emily.

University Ringers for College Students and Adults

Made up of mostly Auburn University students, this group has a great talent for making music. The repertoire practiced by this group explores different musical genres for both secular and non-secular ringing.

Village Bells for College Students and Adults

This was the original Auburn UMC Handbell Choir, formed over 25 years ago in cooperation with the Auburn Music Club, made up of members of our church and community. This group performs in many different venues and is ready to carry the message of Christ to the community.

Bell Ensemble for Adults

The Bell Ensemble started as a small group of 5 players ringing 3 octaves of handbells and has grown to 5 octaves of handbells and 5 octaves of hand chimes. This bell group, as well as other parts of the bell program, allow people of all ages to use their talents in unique ways to bring joy to many people.

Worship Ministries

Worship is so much more than our music. There are many ways to participate in the worshipping life of Auburn UMC.


Acolytes are a select group of children in grades 5th-8th who desire to serve their church by assisting the ministers in worship.  At Auburn UMC, our acolyte program provides Christian education as well as an opportunity for service to the church, stimulation for possible church-related occupations later on, and the opportunity for pastor and youth to relate to each other. It is an ideal vehicle for the faith development of our youth and a good opportunity to positively affect the lives of these children during their most impressionable years. Finally, the acolyte program gives dignity and meaning to the service of worship and inspires our young people to dedicate their lives to the service of Christ and the Church. Students entering 5th and 6th grade are eligible to begin serving.

Acolyte Scheduling-At Auburn UMC Acolytes serve on a rotating schedule. Depending on how many acolytes are in the program each acolyte will serve 3-4 times per schedule. For new Acolytes in the fall, there will be a brief practice time on Thursday afternoons, usually at 5:00pm, before a child acolytes at a Sunday service.


Families have the opportunity to donate flowers for the Sanctuary or Chapel for our weekly worship services.

For more information, call Katharine Manley at (334) 826-8800


Auburn UMC is a very popular wedding venue for members and non-members because of the beauty and history of our Sanctuary and Founders Chapel.

For more information, please call Katharine Manley at (334) 826-8800.

Click Here to Download the Wedding Handbook

Click Here to Download a Wedding Application


Music and Worship Team

Gary Klarenbeek

Director of Music Ministries

Rev. Chris Kelsey

Director of Worship & Media

Emily Bigler