The music at Our Savior is eclectic and diverse, ranging from very traditional to modern, and often in the same service. We follow the traditional Lutheran worship format for communion nearly every week, but we are constantly experimenting with different musical ways of presenting it. Through the various styles, the common goal of our artistic endeavors is to help the congregation sing, to put the Gospel on the lips of the people of God through song that the Word might dwell in their hearts through faith.
If you enjoy what you hear or have some musical abilities and would like to learn more about getting involved with our music program, contacts us through the church office! The many opportunities to be involved with musical leadership in our worship services include:
The Church Choir is our premier musical ensemble that leads most frequently and for nearly all of the major celebrations of the calendar (Christmas, Easter, etc…). All the musicians in our other ensembles also serve in the choir program in some capacity, so it functions as a kind of central hub in our community of musicians. They meet Tuesday evenings to practice singing, explore a variety of choral literature, and to use music as a means of meditating on God’s Word. For those who would love to sing but cannot commit the full schedule of this ensemble, consider singing with our Men’s or Women’s choirs. These groups help lead worship 2-3 times a year each, with a minimal commitment to rehearsal time.
For instrumentalists we also have several ensembles that lead roughly once a month. We have a praise band, a youth band, and an eclectic ensemble of all acoustic instruments. If you play an instrument of any kind, we’re always looking for opportunities to integrate new talent into these teams. No instrument is off limits! If you’re wanting to serve the Lord with your talents, we’ll do our best to provide you with an opportunity.
Pastor Stelzer's solo 2/21/16
Check out a sample of each of our music ensembles:
8 & 10:30 AM: Worship Service
• Childcare Provided
• Children's Sunday School
(Pre K to 6th Grade)
• Confirmation Program
(7th & 8th Grade)
• Adult Bible Study
• High School Bible Study
Communion Service Every Sunday
Pastor: Rev. Ronald W. Stelzer
Assistant to the Pastor: Gary D’Aquino, LCMS Deacon
Director of Parish Music: Ray Knehnetski
Secretary: Robin Reade
Ray (Knehnetsky) Kenetsky spends his days and Sundays like most church music directors and choir directors leading a congregation in hymns or students in a choir.
But for Mr, Kenetsky, the rest of his time isn't spent leading a choir at OSNAS but being on tour conducting for Frankie Avalon.
Mr. Ray, as the students like to call him, graduated from the Berklee College of Music in Boston and went on to write advertising jingles and music for TV and movies. He later on attended and graduated from Concordia University in Irvine, California where he studied for the Director of Parish Music Program. In 2009 Mr Ray received a star on the Walk of Fame in Wildwood, N.J.
Outside of writing music for Hollywood, Mr. Ray played with a number of bands.
His first big break was in 1973 with Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes - they were an R&B group with major recording hits “The Love I Lost”, “If You Don’t Know Me By Now” and “Bad Luck.”
More recently, Mr. Ray has been working with Frankie Avalon, as his musical director on tour and for TV. Mr. Ray did an appearance with Frankie Avalon on "American Idol" a few years ago.
Frankie Avalon once said , the greatest strength Mr. Ray has as a musician is his versatility. "Ray has the wonderful advantage of fitting in with any type of music," said the recording star. "He can adjust flawlessly."
For Mr. Ray, it wasn't a big change to go from writing music for movies to writing music for Our Savior Church. "It's the same for both mediums," Mr. Ray said. "Frankie will tell me to change this or change that. At church there are always changes in the liturgy and hymns that the pastor requests.
However, balancing his time between being there for Avalon as he tours the nation and serving the parishioners and students in Centereach isn't always easy.
"It's definitely a juggling act. I should've been in the circus," Mr, Ray said. "I've got everything on my laptop with me and e-mail the music to the church (while on tour)." Plus there’s a great praise band that fills in when I’m away.
Mr. Ray’s favorite part of his role at OSNAS is working with the Jr. High and High School music program. "The youth are like my own children," he said. "If they are bored of traditional hymns then we try something new. It lets them be creative. I allow them to express themselves musically.”
Recently Mr. Ray took 25 students to Carnegie Hall to participate for the “500 Voices for 500 Years” event celebrating the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. Two of OSNAS’ students were chosen to be soloists. Back in May 0f 2017 Mr. Ray introduced the first Senior Recital at OSNAS. This will be a yearly event acknowledging the talents of the seniors in all the Arts.
The music program of OSNAS strives to glorify God through music in all gatherings and presentations. Music is integral to the celebration of any liturgical or school event. The voice of the assembly is the primary voice in any liturgy. Singing unifies and deepens our communal prayer. Singing together, we become one body in Christ.
The mission of the music program supports the goals of the OSNAS family: we strive to embody the gospel of Jesus Christ by reaching out to each other and the community, nurturing one another in the life of the school and sending one another in service to all persons.