Dee Bulante

Dee Bulante, senior pastor of GCI’s churches in Portland, Oregon and Vancouver, Washington, grew up in the Philippines in Metro Manila. “I grew up with the hope that one day our family would move to the US because my mom applied for a workers visa back when I was just a kid. It took many years before the US Embassy reviewed her application; I was already a college student at that time.”

Dee and Lisa Bulante
Dee and Lisa

Growing up, Dee was active in sports and church. “I enjoyed ping pong, tennis, basketball and golf.” Growing up Catholic, Dee’s mother wanted him to become a priest. “I served as an altar boy and a reader.” Dee’s mother got part of her wish. He’s not a priest, but he is a pastor.

Dee started attending GCI in the Philippines in 1984. “I started listening to The World Tomorrow telecast and subscribed to The Plain Truth magazine and was intrigued by the message and teaching. I was baptized in 1986 in the Philippines, just prior to our family immigrating to the United States.”

The family was supposed to live in Florida, but ended up in Los Angeles in 1986. “I attended the Reseda church in Southern California for several years before 1997 when I helped Pastor Bermie Dizon start NewLife Fellowship in Pasadena.”

Dee, who was divorced in 2009, married Lisa on March 18, 2012. “I have two stepsons, Nelson and Eli Heimsoth. Nelson is a freshman college student in Southern California. Eli is a sophomore in high school in Oregon City. My wife Lisa has been a teacher for over 20 years in the North Clackamas School District. She also serves as a union officer in the local chapter of the National Education Association.”

Dee served with Pastor Dizon at NewLife Fellowship for two years as a bi-vocational pastor. “Bermie was my mentor. He saw the passion and zeal I have for our Lord Jesus and acknowledged my sincere desire to serve in pastoral ministry.” The mentoring served Dee well. “I was hired as a full-time salaried pastor in 1999. It was during our time of transition from legalism to grace that I felt the calling of God to enter vocational ministry. I embraced our freedom in Christ through our new theological understanding and was excited, encouraged and motivated to share that amazing grace to our members and others. We were losing many of our pastors at the time, either through voluntary departure or financial difficulties. I sought a meeting with Dan Rogers to convey to him my desire to serve, in whatever capacity, the denomination during this time of transition. This meeting led to my hiring and subsequent transfer to pastor in Tucson, Arizona.”

After serving the GCI congregations in Tucson and Sierra Vista, Arizona for two years, Dee was transferred to Washington and served as the senior pastor of the Olympia and Port Orchard congregations. “I transferred to Vancouver, Washington in 2010, where I now serve as senior pastor of our churches in Portland and Vancouver.”

When asked what he enjoys most about being a pastor, Dee said, “This is easy. I love sharing in the lives of the members of our church and their families. I’m especially excited about teaching biblical doctrine and helping people apply it to day-to-day living. Secondarily, I enjoy the pursuit of knowing the Triune God and the privilege of unpacking the truth of the immense love of the Father, expressed through the grace of the Son in the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Understanding the truth of our acceptance and inclusion in the life and love of the Trinity instructs and guides me in loving the people that God brings to my circle of influence.” Dee also mentioned GCI’s fellowship and unity. “I feel at home with our churches and members in other states and countries when I have the privilege to be with them.”

We asked Dee what he would like others to know about him that they may not already know. “It embarrasses me a little bit to confirm this,” he replied, “but I do love reality TV. I was a fan of The Real World on MTV when it pioneered the genre of reality-based TV programming. It has since morphed into reality game shows and other weird shows. I currently like watching Top Chef, Survivor, and yes, The Bachelor/Bachelorette.”

While reality shows provide entertainment, Dee’s real passion is God’s Word. “I am passionate about preaching and teaching the good news of the Father’s love through the Son by the power of the Spirit.”

Dee shared an interesting memorable moment. “I was preaching with fervor and enthusiasm during one of our festival days, when from out of the audience a woman leapt to her feet, ran towards me and kissed my cheeks. At first, I didn’t know what she had in mind, but certainly appreciated that endearing gesture. It has not happened to me since. I guess it went downhill from there (smile).”

Dee finished up by sharing this: “I feel closest to God when I am worshiping him through music because I feel his love for me through the words sung and can express back to him my devotion and gratitude.”

2 thoughts on “Dee Bulante”

  1. Too bad we aren’t closer so we could share some adobo and a couple Singha. We love you Dee.

    God bless you and Lisa.

    Ken & Nancy

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