By Dean Adkins
For most Southern Gospel artists, Christmas is a time of restoration and a chance to take some time off the road and enjoy their family. Bryan Hutson also took that same approach for a number of years. In the past few years, however, he has used that time to develop a family-oriented program to minister to churches in a multi-state area. Bryan was kind enough to answer my questions regarding his Christmas ministry.
DA: Why did you decide to do Christmas concerts?
BH: I decided to do Christmas concerts to take a break from my normal routine of group presentations (Soul’d Out and Kingsmen) to focus a few weeks on our (Yvonne and myself ) ministry.
DA: When did you begin doing this?
BH: I actually began doing Christmas solo dates during my first tenure with the Kingsmen in 1996. I was invited to take part in a Toys for Tots Benefit program in southern Indiana (where I’m from) and it so much fun, that I decided to make my Christmas concerts a part of my holiday tradition. Now, since Yvonne and I have launched “Rescue Me Ministries”, we are incorporating our ministry focus into our programs.
DA: What is a typical Christmas concert?
BH: That’s the thing, we are able to adapt to any type of program. If the pastor/promoter wants strictly Christmas music, or a mixture of Christmas with Soul’d Out/Kingsmen music or music and testimony, we can do that. One service/concert, we’ll actually be working with the church’s praise team. So we change to fit the situation.
DA: Have you changed your presentation or your approach to these over the years?
BH: We’ve changed a little. Our focus has always been pointing people to the Babe in the manger that became our Savior. We have just added our personal testimonies to the programs.
DA: How much preparation goes into the program and when do you start preparing?
BH: We begin a few weeks out in ‘re-learning’ those Christmas songs that we only sing a few weeks of the year. (The older I get, the harder it is to remember words!) We take our programs very seriously.
DA: What is your primary goal for these?
BH: To bring a little Christmas cheer to the folks that support our ministry. I have heard that the holiday season is a very depressing time for a lot of people. We want to encourage the family, challenge the moms and dads to be the parents that God created them to be and lift up the name of Jesus.
DA: What is a typical Christmas at the Hutson household?
BH: We began a tradition of attending Christmas Eve service together. It is such a blessing to stand and sing songs about the birth of our King on Christmas Eve. We light candles in memory of those we’ve lost and will read the Christmas story before we go to bed.
DA: What was Christmas like when you were growing up?
BH: Christmas for me (Bryan) was hard. Dad began battling health problems so money for presents was tight. There were never a lot of gifts, but plenty of love. We’d all gather at my grandparents’ house on Christmas Eve and eat dinner and have fellowship. In fact, that’s still a tradition at Grandma’s house. Last year, they counted 48 people in a VERY small house! Yvonne and I go over Christmas Day!
Bryan adds, “If anyone would like to purchase our NEW Christmas CD, they can write us at firstname.lastname@example.org or search “Rescue Me Ministries” or “Friends of Bryan Hutson” on Facebook. We pray that everyone will have a blessed Christmas and strive to live for Christ every day!”
I have attended Bryan and Yvonne’s Christmas program and can attest that it is uplifting and inspiring.
By Dean Adkins
First published by SGN Scoops digital magazine in December 2014, found at http://www.sgnscoops.com/2014/12/09/december-2014-sgnscoops-magazine/
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