Here's the second post in the series of "Names You Might Not Know Yet." This post highlights the Allen Family. I first saw this family at Skyline Baptist Church in Branson, which is where my family visits when we are in town. We didn't realize that they would be singing in the service that morning, but were really impressed by this family. Then, I got to see them again in Branson but at the Southern Gospel Picnic at Silver Dollar City for a 30 minute concert.
The family consists of Todd and Michelle (mom and dad), Caleb, Gabrielle, Joshua, Jared, Danielle, Abigail, Zachariah and Christian. Enjoy learning a little bit more about this amazing family!
Question: When did you start singing as a family?
Allen Family: In 1995, we began on the road in full-time evangelistic ministry. Over the years, it has evolved into a family singing ministry. In recent years there has been a much greater emphasis on foreign missions. We now take annual mission trips to Uganda with the whole family.
Q: I understand that your family travels together in your bus 365 days a year. What's day to day life like when you are not singing? Do you have a home base or is that where the bus is parked?
Allen Family: Every day is different when you live on the road. We have learned to be very flexible. Some days we homeschool, some days we sing, some days we practice, some days we fellowship with friends or family in our path. Lots of days we drive from one place to the next. God has blessed us with many wonderful friends across the nation. We do have a ministry base, Branson, Missouri, where we do Christmas shows every year in November and December. But we do not have a home there, just a home church. Our mailing address is Branson.
Q: What's the one thing that you want people who walk away from your concerts to know about the Allen Family?
Allen Family: We love Jesus. We want them to hear Him in our singing, see Him in the way we treat each other, and feel our passion to share His love with the world.
Q: Do you have a favorite song that you sing? And what song from another group has ministered to you?
Allen Family: That's a hard question to answer because we are so selective in the music we sing. We are very careful about the message and theology presented in a song. So we love just about every song we choose to sing. A lot of our songs are written by Todd (Dad) and our oldest son, Caleb. So those would probably be classified as our favorites. They are able to write songs that come from a perspective we have actually live, so those songs really minister to us personally.
Q: What artists have been your biggest influence (musically and/or personally)?
Allen Family: Well as far as influence, that answer would probably differ for everyone in the family. But we have lots of friends in Southern Gospel groups who encourage us by their steadfast walk with God. Some of our dearest friends would be the guys in Triumphant, and The Whisnants.
Q: What new things are coming up for the Allen Family?
In May, we are doing two new CDs, one of which is an all hymn CD, and also a live DVD recording at Harrisburg Baptist Church in Tupelo, Miss. We are so excited about this event because the Harrisburg Sanctuary Choir will be joining us on the recording. Then, June 5, the whole family is going to Uganda to do to two evangelistic crusades, two pastor's conferences, and to visit several Compassion Child Development Centers. We are very proud to partner with the ministry of Compassion International. One of the unique things about our advocacy for Compassion now is that all of the children we obtain sponsors for are from the area of Uganda where our family goes to work. So, we are able to personally meet these children and tell them we were there when they were chosen by their sponsor. While in Soroti, Uganda this year, we will also be blessing an entire village area of 200 families (8-15 people per family), with water filtration systems that need no electricity, for those who have to share watering holes with cattle, etc. These families will also be receiving seeds to plant food for their families, medical care, hygiene items, and gospel literature in their own heart language.
Thanks so much to the Allen Family for answering all my questions. For more information on the Allen family, visit their website at www.allenministries.com.