On the Field and Behind Bars

 During the season we will be posting weekly player profiles. Tyson Stakes is going to provide the family, friends, fans, and alumni of the Greenville Panthers a deeper view of some of our players. The second installment looks at JR WR Cody Hutchin (Portland, OR).

  The call to service is a major part of the Christian faith. Jesus lived life with a servant’s heart, even though he was fully God and fully man. The kind of service that Jesus talks about isn’t just something that we do, it’s something we live. It should be an important aspect of how we approach any part of our lives, whether we are on the football field or up in the stands.

This week’s Player Profile is on Junior WR Cody Hutchin, who has recently decided to dedicate time towards helping serve prisoners as part of an on-campus prison outreach ministry.

Tyson Stakes: So, in a nutshell, what is this Prison Outreach Ministry that you’ve decided to be a part of?

Cody Hutchin: I guess the biggest key is showing the love of Christ. Hebrews 13:3 says to remember the prisoners as if you were a fellow prisoner. It’s definitely God’s calling; to remember the orphans, widows and prisoners. And if we can be witnesses through the education of the prisoners, then that’s the meat of the whole outreach. 

TS: So basically, you go into the prison and do education programs. 

CH: Yeah, that’s probably what I will do. There are a bunch of programs you can do, like teach guitar, etc. But that’s what I will be helping with. 

TS: You mentioned before earlier about a certain kind of training you need to do. What kind of training is required? 

CH: Basically the prison puts on this paid for training on set of rules. For example, you can’t give the prisoners “fist pounds,” or bring them newspaper articles. There are a lot of strict rules. But it’s pretty much just to train you on how not to mess with what the prison has going on. 

TS: What inspired you to decide to join this particular ministry?

CH: That’s a good question. I think, more or less, over the last year I’ve really be trying to find ways and broaden my ministry horizons. This last summer I helped with the Sunday school at my home church and I really enjoyed doing that. I love kids, but I didn’t know if that was something I would look forward to every week. But I really felt like God was telling me to take part of that ministry this past summer. I guess that’s the same feeling I got in chapel about what I should be doing this semester.

TS: So what, do you think, about playing football has prepared you for going to the prison? It’s definitely different than teaching Sunday school kids!

CH: (Laughs) That’s for sure. I think that it was less of the sport and more of the Greenville Football program. Coach Walker and the other coaches have really pushed me and challenged me in my faith and my walk, praying for boldness. Through Coach Walker’s prayer times and meetings, just being adamant about repenting because we don’t know when Jesus is coming. So that, in a way, has paved the way for not just this ministry, but also my life as well. 

TS: Great stuff Cody. Thanks for taking the time out of your busy college schedule to talk about what’s going on in your life outside of football.

CH: Oh please (sheepish embarrassed look)!

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