First Baptist Names New Pastor
By LORETTA FULTON
Brandon Hudson was announced Sunday as the new senior pastor at First Baptist Church.
Hudson, his wife Jill, daughter Sophia, 15, and son Quinn, 13, are expected to move to Abilene in early February. Hudson has been senior pastor of Crosscreek Baptist Church in Pelham, Alabama, since 2013.
Robert Ellis, chairman of the pastor search committee at First Baptist, made the announcement Sunday morning, with the Hudson family present.
“What an amazing day this is,” Ellis said, noting that the church was adorned with symbols of joy and new beginnings for the season of Advent.
The nine-member search committee began its work 18 months ago. Phil Christopher, senior pastor since 1995, announced in June 2021 that his retirement would be effective Sept. 26, Matt Cook has served as interim pastor.
Among Hudson’s qualifications, Ellis cited his gifts as a preacher and leader, his theological mind, his love for people, and his creativity and sensitivity. As the nomination process continued, Ellis said, committee members felt drawn to Hudson.
“We have sensed that this is the person who has the kinds of gifts we as a church need,” Ellis said, “to be what God is calling us to in the years ahead.”
Hudson is a native of Lubbock and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Texas Tech University. He met Jill at Tech. During college, the couple served as youth ministers at two different churches in the Lubbock area.
“He has a West Texas spirit in his soul,” Ellis said.
After graduation from Tech, the Hudsons moved to Waco, where Brandon earned a master of divinity degree from Truett Seminary, which is a part of Baylor University. Jill also earned a master of divinity degree and a graduate degree in counseling. Today, she is a high school math teacher and periodically serves as a church consultant.
After Ellis announced Hudson as the new pastor, he offered a prayer thanking God for his divine guidance.
“You have been faithful every step of the way,” Ellis said.
Loretta Fulton is editor of Spirit of Abilene