Dear 100 Hour Board,
I was once a pianist in a BYU ward and had a wonderful experience in that calling. I learned just how important it is to bring the spirit into the room before and after the meeting, and it was a responsibility that I took seriously. I felt that I was blessed, and humbled, to see the results of my efforts.
I have now moved on and am in a singles ward not at BYU. I was recently called as the organist and have had the opportunity to play for a couple Sundays. The experience is different and I am frustrated. When the members of the ward do not live so close together (like they do at the Y) Sunday tends to become a social time. I do agree that socialization is important. We are, after all, in a singles ward where, like it or not, we are all trying to get married eventually, and assume this is where we will meet the person we will marry. Sunday IS the only time we can see everyone on a regular basis. However, as I am playing the prelude, and especially the postlude, I find that the socializing means there is very little reverent atmosphere. To even be heard I must play loud, impressive songs/hymns, but doing so is also contrary to the spirit that I feel I should, as organist, be bringing into the room. As important as it is to meet and talk to friends, we do come to church to be spiritually uplifted, and we need to be prepared to feel the spirit and then to reflect on the spirit afterwards.
So after that long introduction, here are my questions. First, is there a church article, conference message, general authority statement, etc. on prelude/postlude and reverence before and after sacrament meeting? (Everything I have found talks about hymns DURING the meeting.) And what can I do to help the situation in my ward?