Ben Hutto, Director of Music Ministry at St. John’s, died on September 29. St. John’s will hold a memorial service at 11 a.m. on Monday, October 12, to honor his ministry among us and to give thanks to God for the blessing he was to so many of us at St. John’s Church and to the larger community.
Some of the comments I hear describing Ben are: loved life, brilliant, funny, great friend, lovely, brave, great teacher, inspirational, faithful, great family man, and delightful.
Many of us at St. John’s did not know all of his gifts and accomplishments. Ben was also the Director of Choral Activities for St. Alban’s School and the National Cathedral School. During his tenure there the choral program grew from 18 voices to the present 200 voices. He led the choral groups in several international tours from Australia to South Africa to Argentina and Chile. He received an Outstanding Teacher Award at St. Alban’s in 2003.
Ben was active in the Royal School of Music of Salisbury, England. He was President of the Royal School of Music in the United States from 2003 to 2006. He was also President of the Association of the Anglican Musicians in 1998. In 2013, Virginia Theological Seminary awarded him an honorary doctoral degree in Humane Letters for all his contributions to church music, education of young people and his leadership in congregational worship.
I will miss Ben. He has been a wonderful friend since we met in 1972 as teachers at Porter Gaud School in Charleston, SC, and he has been a delightful colleague in ministry here at St. John’s since 2006 when he joined the St. John’s Staff.