Reading PA

Last updated: August 21, 2014 at 10:54 am

Message from the Dean 

Welcome to the website of the Reading, Pennsylvania, Chapter of the American Guild of Organists. Chapter membership includes organists and others from the Greater Reading area, encompassing Berks and Schuylkill Counties.

Please contact the chapter dean or one of the other chapter officers listed below for assistance with suggestions for organists available for Sunday substitute work or for a list of available organ teachers offering private instruction.


Local Events

Reading Chapter, AGO, Picnic, for chapter members and their guests, will be held on Saturday, August 23, 2014, at 5 p.m. at 411 Green Valley Road, Sinking Spring. Beverages and paper supplies will be provided. Please bring a covered dish to share, and remember your lawn chairs!

Cedar Lutheran Church, 3419 Broadway, Allentown, presents the dedication recital for their new III/67 Walker Organ on Sunday, September 7, 2014, at 3 p.m. The recitalist is Rebecca Kleintop Owens, Director of Music and Organist at Central Moravian Church, Bethlehem. The concert is free, and a reception in the social hall follows the program.

Reading Chapter, AGO, Luncheon is set for the CrossRoads Restaurant on Saturday, September 13, 2014, at 11 a.m. Chapter members and friends are invited to meet and greet the Executive Committee, who will share plans for the upcoming program year and receive comments and suggestions for the future.

Trinity Lutheran Church, 527 Washington Street, Reading, presents organist Paul Jacobs in recital on Sunday, September 14, 2014, at 4 p.m.

The Philadelphia Organ Quartet will appear in concert at Fleetwood High School, 803 N. Richmond St., Fleetwood, on Saturday, September 20, 2014, at 3 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. in a program benefiting Berks Base 18, a group that presents assemblies to Jr./Sr. High School students on values. Tickets are $28. Call (610) 763-8043 or e-mail for more information or to place a ticket order.

First United Church of Christ, 611 Washington Street, Reading presents organist Joan Lippincott in recital on Sunday, October 5, 2014, at 3 p.m.

Reading Chapter, AGO, Hymnody Workshop with David Cherwien, will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 4125 Penn Avenue, Sinking Spring, on Saturday, October 18, 2014, at 9 a.m. The three-hour event consists of two sessions: (1) “Different Times, Different Spaces–Varied Voices,” and (2) “Hospitality in Hymnody.” All are invited to participate; registration is required: Adult – $15, and Student – $10.

Trinity Lutheran Church, 527 Washington Street, Reading, presents a Hymn Festival led by David Cherwien on Sunday October 19, 2014, at 4 p.m.




“2014 Young Organist Scholarship Winner”

Sarah Woronko, daughter of Thomas and Christine Woronko, is the winner of the Reading Chapter, AGO, Young Organist Scholarship for 2014 – 2015. Sarah has completed Grade 8 at Wilson West Middle School. She is a student of Teresa Kissling. The Reading Chapter, AGO, partners with the Reading Musical Foundation in the administration of the Young Organist Scholarship, which is awarded annually to a student from Berks or Schuylkill Counties in Grades 7 – 11, who is new to the organ (less than one year of organ lessons at the time of the audition). For complete information on the scholarship visit www.readingmusical

“From the Editor”

Unfortunately, many records of the early decades of the Reading Chapter, AGO, were lost some years ago. Every once in a while, though, parts of our otherwise lost history resurface in odd ways. Gathering the information for our 2013 Annual Members’ Recital at Frieden’s Church, Shartlesville, I turned to my “Organ Handbook 2003,” for the stoplist of their Thomas Dieffenbach Organ. (The Organ Historical Society held its 2003 convention in Central Pennsylvania, and Shartlesville was one of the performance venues.) Salem Church, Bethel, which houses an 1872 Thomas Dieffenbach instrument, was also visited by those OHS conventioneers. It turns out that the Salem Church recitalist was John Charles Schucker, a native of Rehrersburg, and the winner of the first scholarship of the Reading Chapter, AGO, presented in conjunction with the Reading Musical Foundation. Mr. Schucker went on to graduate from the Juilliard School. We had forgotten that the Reading Chapter’s Young Organist Scholarship had existed–at least briefly–prior to the current series of annual scholarship awards that began in 2002.

- Michael A. Baal, Editor



Chapter Treasurer Mr. Kevin R. Kline coordinates all membership matters for the Reading Chapter. If you are considering joining our AGO Chapter, please contact him by mail: 1406 N. 14th St., Reading, PA 19604; by telephone: (610) 763-7393; or by e-mail:



St. Thomas Episcopal Church, 6251 Morgantown Road, P. O. Box 97, Morgantown, Pa. 19543, seeks a part-time organist to play hymns and service music for a small congregation. One Sunday service at 9:30 a.m.; no choir. Organ is a 4-year-old 2-manual Rodgers Insignia digital instrument. Contact, or call (610) 286-9547, or mail resume to church at address above. (Posted August, 2014.)

Zion Lutheran Church, 300 W. High St., Womelsdorf, Pa. 19567, seeks an Organist/Choir Director.  Responsibilities include one Sunday service, adult choir, plus possible children’s choir.  Contact church at address above, or call (610) 589-4130, or e-mail for more information, or to apply.  (Posted February, 2014.)

St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, 1185 Summer Hill Road, Auburn, Pa. 17922, seeks a Director of Music/Organist.  Responsibilities include providing musical leadership for two Sunday services plus special worship services, directing adult choir, contemporary music group, and handbell choir.  Resources include 2-manual Moeller Pipe Organ, piano, and keyboard.  Full job description available upon request.  Submit cover letter and resume to or mail to church address above.  (Posted February, 2014.)

 Shenkel United Church of Christ, 1580 Shenkel Road, Pottstown, Pa., 19465 seeks a Director of Music Ministries/Choir Director/Organist-Accompanist (One combined position, or two separate positions). Our 300+ member church offers a competitive salary commensurate with experience. Contact Linda Foss, Search Committee Chair, at (610) 326-3535 or via e-mail to (Posted February, 2014).

Reformation Lutheran Church, 3670 Perkiomen Avenue, Reading, PA 19606, is seeking a part-time organist to play for two weekly Sunday morning worship services. For more information, and/or to submit resume, contact the church at the address above, call (610) 779-0534, or e-mail (Posted October, 2013.)

St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, Front & Windsor Streets, Reading, is seeking a musician to play hymns on an electronic piano for the weekly 10 a.m. Sunday worship service. An honorarium will be provided. Contact the Rev. Bruce Baker at (610) 374-7914 for more information. (Posted October, 2013.)

St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, 300 W. First Street, Birdsboro, 19508, seeks a part-time Minister of Music. For a full job description, please e-mail September, 2013.)

St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, 301 Penn Avenue, Robesonia, 19551, seeks a part-time Minister of Music. Responsibilities include one weekly Sunday morning service (organ and piano) plus one rehearsal (adult choir and bell choir). Interested candidates may submit resumes to the church at the address above. (Posted August, 2013.)

First United Church of Christ, Hamburg, is seeking a part-time choir director for one weekly Sunday morning service plus the usual special holiday services. Call (610)562-2593 for more information, or e-mail (Posted July, 2013.)

St. John’s Lutheran Church, 201 E. Main St., Kutztown, 19530, seeks a part-time Director of Music. Resources include 3-manual, 37-rank Schantz pipe organ; 3 octaves of hand bells, 2 octaves of hand chimes; adult choir. Contact the church at the address above, or by telephone (610) 683-3140, or e-mail (Posted July, 2013.)

Holy Spirit Lutheran Church, 421 Windsor Street, Reading, PA 19601, seeks a part-time (15-20 hours per week) Organist/Choir Director. Responsibilities include two Sunday services, adult choir, bell choir, and occasional special services. Instrument is a recently refurbished E. M. Skinner pipe organ; bilingual abilities would be a plus. E-mail resumes or mail to address above. For more information call (610) 376-0825. (Posted May, 2013.)

All Souls Church, worshipping in the chapel at 640 Centre Avenue, Reading, seeks an organist for 1 p.m. Sunday worship services. Information and job description is available from, by calling (610) 621-1738, or at (Posted May, 2012.)

Note: these listings reflect the best current information received by the chapter dean about area vacancies. We attempt to keep the list current, but notice of a vacancy being filled is not always reported to us in a timely fashion.

Employers and job seekers are invited to post and search listings of available positions on the Guild’s National Website.





Contact Us

Mrs. Teresa A. Kissling, Dean -
Mr. John C. Brewster, Sub-Dean -
Mr. Kevin R. Kline, Treasurer -
Mrs. Miriam I. Borkert, Secretary -

Mr. Lee Ferrier, Executive Committee
Mrs. Marjorie Fitz, CAGO, Executive Committee
Mrs. Annamae R. Loose, Executive Committee
Mrs. Kimberly F. Ayrton, Executive Committee
Rev. Michael A. Baal, D.M.A., AAGO, Newsletter/Website Editor -



AGO National website