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Hillsong United honored with five GMA Dove Awards Print Email
Written by Christine D. Johnson   
Tuesday, 04 November 2014 04:51 PM America/New_York

Group wins major categories Artist of the Year and Song of the Year at 45th annual Christian music event

JDHillsong-GettyImagesHillsong United took home five honors, including the Artist of the Year and Song of the Year, at the 45th Annual GMA Dove Awards. Other multiple-award winners were Switchfoot with three and Skillet with two presented at the Oct. 7 Nashville event.

Co-hosted by Lecrae and MercyMe’s Bart Millard, the Gospel Music Association (GMA) Dove Awards drew record attendance at the Allen Arena on the Lipscomb University campus. The awards show was broadcast at a later date exclusively on Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN).

Hillsong’s creative pastor, JD, accepted the awards on behalf of Hillsong United.

“We believe the local church is going to be the salvation to the rest of the world,” he said. “Keep the church strong. Through the sacrifices of many ... on behalf of thousands of volunteers, over the past 30 years, I’ve been honored to be a part of this.”

Switchfoot received the awards for Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year for Fading West (Atlantic/Word Distribution); Rock/Contemporary Song of the Year for “Love Alone Is Worth the Fight” from Fading West; and Long Form Video of the Year for Fading West.

Skillet won two significant categories, Rock Album of the Year for Rise (Atlantic/Word Records/Word Distribution) and Rock Song of the Year for “Not Gonna Die,” one of several No. 1 radio hits from Rise. Rise made its debut at No. 1 on the Billboard Rock and Christian charts and No. 4 on the Billboard 200.

“Have to say it was pretty cool hearing the news about these wins,” said lead singer John Cooper. “We couldn’t be there since we’re heading to Europe again this week, but to have this album recognized in this way is definitely an honor, and we’re really thankful.”

The awards were handed out in 42 categories. The televised winners include: Hillsong United, Song of the Year for “Oceans (Where Feet May Fail)” (Hillsong/Sparrow Records/Capitol Christian Distribution); Karen Peck & New River, Southern Gospel Recorded Song of the Year for “Revival” (Daywind Records/New Day Christian Distribution); Hezekiah Walker, Contemporary Gospel/Urban Recorded Song of the Year for “Every Praise” (RCA Inspiration/Provident Distribution); Erica Campbell, Traditional Gospel Recorded Song of the Year for “A Little More Jesus” (My Block/eOne Music/eOne Distribution); Andy Mineo, Rap/Hip Hop Album of the Year for Never Land (Reach Records/New Day); Mandisa, Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year for Overcomer (Sparrow/Capitol Christian); Kari Jobe, Praise and Worship Album of the Year for Majestic (Sparrow/Capitol Christian); and Inspirational Film, God’s Not Dead (Pure Flix).

“Honestly, I’m just sitting in God’s Word, and the songs just keep coming,” said Holcomb, New Artist of the Year.

Praise and Worship Album of the Year winner Jobe said: “We praise until the breakthrough comes, and I love to get to watch that happen.”

Singer Michael Tait of the Newsboys reflected on the God’s Not Dead movie win.

“People are hungry,” Tait said. “They want some light from heaven. The song inspired the film. These guys came along and made it into something special.”

Four special honors also were presented. Hillsong was given the Lifetime Achievement Award; Eddie DeGarmo, the GMA Impact Award; Akintunde, the Grady Nutt Humor Award; and SiriusXM, the Outstanding Mainstream Contribution to Gospel Music Award.

Jonathan McReynolds and Meredith Andrews were co-hosts of the pre-show ceremony where more than 30 of the awards were received and many top artists performed.

GMA members determine the winners in each category. Kraft CPA is the official accounting firm for the GMA. See a full list of winners at —Johnson