Last night marks a special night in history for the Christian and Gospel music industry as the first ever GMA Honors event took place. I must admit, I was a bit skeptical when I received the first notice about the upcoming event. Not fully understanding the concept of the event, my initial thoughts were “Do we really need another Christian and Gospel awards show?” What I experienced though turned out to be quite a special event and I’m thankful I had the opportunity to attend.
The GMA Honors took a different approach than one might expect from an awards show. Combining the induction of recipients into the Gospel Music Hall of Fame with honoring people & organizations who have significantly impacted the world through their work with Christian and Gospel music proved to be a great concept. It was a heart-moving evening as we were reminded of the purpose for Christian and Gospel music.
Hall of Fame Inductees included Brown Bannister, Rich Mullins, Take 6 and the Gaither Vocal Band. Brown Bannister was celebrated with an acoustic performance by Amy Grant & Bannister’s daughter Ellie Holcomb singing “El Shaddai” while accompanied by Vince Gill on guitar. That my friends was a moment! We were blessed with a stellar performance from Take 6 and the evening closed with David Crowder singing an amazing version of Bill & Gloria Gaither’s “Because He Lives!”
Honorees included Dr Bobby Jones, Don Moen, Michael Guido, Show Hope and World Vision. Highlights included DC Talk’s Michael Tait, Tobymac and Kevin Max on the stage together to honor Michael Guido, a man who has pastored and counseled many artists, musicians and their families for the last 16 years through his PR Ministries. One of the evening’s special moments was hearing the hearts of Steven Curtis Chapman and wife Marybeth Chapman talk about Show Hope, the organization they founded to help orphans in distress around the world.
The evening was a nice departure from the normal award shows that are merely popularity contest which create competitiveness and boost egos. Instead, individuals and organizations were recognized for the positive impact that have contributed to the world. Much appreciation goes out to the GMA, CAA’s John Huie (who birthed the idea), David Lipscomb University for hosting and Six Degrees Touring for the sound and lights that made for an unforgettable evening!