GCI President, Dr. Greg Williams, gives an update on Grace Communion International, sharing the vision of GCI as a “Healthy Church”. He emphasizes that church health and growth starts with Jesus, we, however, are invited to participate with the divine. In our participation with Jesus’ ministry in the world, Dr. Williams encourages all of us to participate wholeheartedly.
Registration Now Open for Grace Communion Seminary Spring Semester
Registration for Spring Semester opened January 2 and runs through January 10. If fewer than five students enroll in a class, it may be canceled at the discretion of the instructor. We encourage you to register early so we may know as soon as possible if a class will meet this minimum. An email has been sent to all current students with further details and the registration link. Our classes on average require 12 hours of study per week, including reading and written assignments. I am happy to assist with any questions you may have about the classes offered, your personal course of study, or any issues you may have with registration or the website. Do you know of anyone interested in taking classes with GCS? Please share your experiences with them and direct them to our website to find an application, a course schedule and much more helpful information. I am happy to answer any questions from potential students as well. Just give me a call at 980-495-3950. It is our prayer that the classes you take at GCS are a blessing to you personally and in your ministry. If I can be of service to you in any way, don’t hesitate to let me know.
— Georgia McKinnon, Registrar
Prayer Guide – January 2019
Click the image below for the 2019 January Prayer Guide.
Honoring Ted Johnston
With warm wishes we celebrate the retirement of Ted Johnston on January 4, 2019. A humble and faithful servant of Jesus who contributed so much to our denomination for decades, Ted worked in pastoral ministry since 1987, serving as a Pastor, District Superintendent, and Regional Pastor. During his tenure, Ted was a champion for youth ministry and mentoring new leaders. Ted served as Gen Min director, and developed much of our Media content through his role of Editor of both GCI Update and Equipper. Ted is a vibrant and vital member of our GCI family and we pray blessings over him and his wife Donna as they enter this new season.
Here are some of Ted’s parting words: “I’m optimistic as I peer into GCI’s future. But I’m also realistic—our transformation needs to continue—we have not arrived. To my brothers and sisters, I say, ‘journey on’!”
Thank you, Ted for the road you have laid and the way you have encouraged us on our journey together.
Click on the image below to learn more about Ted.
Honoring Deb Paz
With gratitude, we celebrate Deborah Paz and her 31 years of devoted service to Grace Communion International. Her caring nature, dedication to detail, and dependability are remembered by all who had the pleasure to work with and know her. She was first hired part-time in May 1984 as Deb Nickel, a student at Ambassador College in Pasadena working in the Telephone Response Department, with a second job in the Ambassador Auditorium. In May 1987, Deb took a full-time job in our Publishing Department as a Production Services Assistant. Deb then transferred to Church Administration where, in 1995, she began serving as Executive Assistant to Dr. Joseph Tkach Jr. He remarked, “More than an excellent assistant, Deb is a dear friend to Tammy and me.” On January 4, 2019, she transitioned from GCI employment. Thank you, Deb, for your love, support, and a job well done. Praying for a joy-filled next season for you and Don.
GCI Regional Celebrations Registration
Register Now for GCI Regional Celebrations
In 2019, GCI will host Regional Celebrations, taking place in 5 regions of the USA:
West USA – April 5, 2019 – April 7, 2019
Central USA – June 7, 2019 – June 9, 2019
Southeast USA – June 21, 2019 – June 23, 2019
North-Central USA – September 27, 2019 – September 29, 2019
East USA – October 25, 2019 – October 27, 2019
Click the image below for more information on the GCI 2019 Regional Celebrations.
Remembering the Life of Carl Parks
Carl Parks, a long-time elder in the Salem Oregon congregation, suffered a severe heart attack and passed away on December 23. Carl and his wife Francis served the congregation faithfully for many years, hosting a variety of events in their home until recently moving into a retirement community. As an Assistant Pastor, Carl coordinated most of the senior activities and Bible Studies, as well as serving on the pastoral team. One of Carl’s favorite hobbies was woodworking, and the beautiful communion trays he turned in his shop are often used as part of the Lord’s Table service.
Carl is survived by Francis, his wife of 64 years, as well as three sons, a daughter, 13 grandchildren, 26 great grandchildren, and 2 great great grandchildren.
Cards can be sent to Francis Parks at
5210 River Road N Apt. 3020
Keizer, OR 97303
Devotional – Choose God’s Choice
Choose God’s Choice
You did not choose me, but I chose you (John 15:16 NIV).
If God has a will for us, does it threaten our human rights? Surely, we have free will. Theologians and philosophers have discussed these subjects endlessly.
God, of course, also has free will. He cuts to the chase in dealing with our dilemma about whether to choose him. He first chose us, before any of us were born! No one forced God to supply “his glorious grace, which he has given us freely in the One he loves” (Ephesians 1:6). It was entirely God’s own choice.
God expressed his free will by sending his Son to die for us.
A “no brainer” is a phrase used to indicate an obvious choice – so obvious that we need not think about it for long. Our response to Christ’s sacrifice may seem like a “no brainer”, but it becomes a stumbling block for many. The desire to hold on to our own free will is so strong. We see accepting God’s will for us as an assault on our freedom. But it isn’t. God’s choice is about making us free. It is about fulfilling our own unique human potential that he chose for us from the foundation of the world.
Choose God’s choice for you.
Great God, thank you that you chose me in Christ Jesus. Help me through the Holy Spirit to live every day in acceptance of your will.
In Jesus’ name, Amen
By James Henderson
Linda Nichols-McCarty Installation
GCI Ripley Honors Former Pastor, Celebrates New Leadership
On December 9, Linda Nichols-McCarty was installed as lead pastor of the Ripley, WV congregation. Randy Bloom, East Regional Director, officiated. Don Hussel was honored as he retires from pastoral ministry.