GCI Update

Going Out in Love

Greg and Susan Williams
Greg and Susan Williams

Dear GCI Family and Friends,

The December 20 issue of Update was a recap of the year. It featured a word cloud showing the most frequently used words in my 2023 letters. By a wide margin, “Jesus” was the most used word. He is the radiance of the Father, and if you have seen him, you have seen the Father. In GCI, we stand on the truth of the triune God revealed in the person of Jesus.

The 2023 word cloud did not show me using the words trinity or triune frequently. Please understand, this does not infer that we are moving away from our bedrock Incarnational Trinitarian Theology. In fact, our direction in GCI is to see what we do in ministry fully dependent on how we relate to Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

God is three personal realities; these three do not exist in isolation. Rather, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are always interweaving and interpenetrating each other, are pure oneness in thought, purpose, and action, and are perfection and beauty—one God in three persons eternally in relationship. (This might be a good spot to pause and worship.)

The story of creation and subsequent salvation of fallen humanity tells us that God goes out from God’s self in love. The triune God is intentionally sharing a communion of life and love with his created children.

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Devotional—Sacred Dependence

One night in January, my pregnant sister was rushed to the hospital when her water broke. After hours of labor, she was eventually given a Caesarian section, for it was taking too long to deliver the baby. Finally, we were invited to view the baby for the first time. He had pinkish skin and weighed 7.5 pounds.

Watching him, I had an epiphany. Every person on earth was once like this tiny, helpless baby—the strongest boxers, fastest athletes, and smartest scientists! We were all small, vulnerable, and dependent on the caress of our caregiver. Even Jesus—who sacrificed his life to save humanity—was once a baby.

And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was on him. Luke 2:40

No matter who we grow up to be, we do so with the guidance of the people who raised us. These people are living examples of God’s love and grace. We were created to live in interdependence with others. No matter how small we were as babies, we grow stronger with the strength and wisdom the Lord blesses us with each day.

Our creator and heavenly Father, we humble ourselves before you as we remember that we came into this world as vulnerable babies who couldn’t have grown strong without your loving presence. We acknowledge the path you set for us, and we continue to seek your guidance as we desire to follow your will. This we pray in the mighty name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. Amen.

By Jessica Joy Pamor, GC Pili Youth Leader
Bicol, Philippines

US Pastors Commissioned

On December 10, Dishon Mills was installed as the pastor of the merged church in Charlotte, NC. The Charlotte congregation and the Steele Creek church plant have now merged and are called Grace Communion Steele Creek.

“I can think of no one better suited and equipped by the Holy Spirit, at this moment in Grace Communion Steele Creek’s journey, to be the pastor and keep the faith community’s eyes on Jesus than Dishon Mills.” —Anthony Mullins

On Sunday, December 31, Ceeja Malmkar was commissioned as the assistant pastor of Grace Communion Surrey Hills in Oklahoma.


“Ceeja is an incredibly gifted woman who loves the Lord and his children. She has a special love for the neighborhood of Surrey Hills and for her and Lucas’ two sons Kacen and Ryker. She is a blessing to the team. I look forward to seeing how God uses her for his glory.” —Michael Rasmussen

On January 21, Jillian Morrison was commissioned as the pastor of the Glendora, CA congregation. Bermie Dizon retired and passed the baton to Jillian. The Monrovia and the Glendora congregations have combined as the Glendora church.

“I commission her into the position of pastor of Grace Communion Glendora and all the responsibilities, the roles, and the authority that go with that position. And I do not do so lightly, but I do so joyfully, knowing full well her resolution, her abilities, and the incredible gifts that God has given her.” —Tim Sitterley


GCI Testify

Fisk Wedding Anniversary

Card artwork by Rebecca Strub

We praise God for the wonderful anniversary celebration that GC Big Sandy hosted after our services Sunday, February 11. We were commemorating the 60th wedding anniversary of members Ray and Nancy Fisk! Ray is a retired GCI employee who worked at Ambassador College for many years.

In addition, the City of Big Sandy proclaimed February 9, 2024, as “Ray and Nancy Fisk Day.” Their committed love for one another inspires us all!

By Jerome Ellard, Pastor
Big Sandy, TX, US


UK and Ireland ACCM

It is important that our church leaders are equipped, confident, theologically aware, and spiritually attuned if they are going to model Christ and lead our members to be the healthiest expression of church that we can be. Most of our leaders in the United Kingdom (UK) and Ireland do not have theological training and, of course, not everyone has the time in their busy schedules, nor the inclination to pursue an accredited qualification. That’s where the Ambassador College of Christian Ministry (ACCM) has proved invaluable to us.

This less formal and more flexible approach to the students’ studies, whilst maintaining academic rigour, has been pitched at just the right level for our needs. While challenging, the modules are accessible to students with varying levels of education.

Over the past few years, we have had a group of ministers, congregational leaders, and regular speakers who have benefited from working through various ACCM modules together as a cohort. Their individual study is complemented by monthly Zoom meetings where they discuss the key points of the lesson and exchange ideas from their study, life, and ministry experiences.

This shared learning journey is providing these GCI members with a sound theological foundation for GCI beliefs. And it is enhancing their skills for the practice of ministry on the ground.

In the UK and Ireland, ACCM is a valuable denominational resource that meets the needs of those who want to advance their service in the church as they participate with Jesus in his shepherding of his people.

ACCM is a course of study that I wholeheartedly recommend to anyone wishing to go deeper in their study and application of God’s word and ministry principles. If that’s you, I would encourage you to begin your voyage of discovery. For more information, see our website.

By Barry Robinson, ACCM Instructor & Regional Director Southern England, the Midlands, and Wales

Prayer Update

In December, I was diagnosed with tumours on my right lung through an imaging scan. The outlook was bleak as the doctor gave no signs of hope. Then I saw an oncologist in a Kuala Lumpur hospital where another scan was performed. After the scan, I was not allowed to go home as my hemoglobin levels had fallen drastically. I was in bad shape as I was very weak and coughing constantly. I was hospitalized immediately and received a blood transfusion to raise my hemoglobin levels.

The next day the oncologist delivered the news that the scan showed that no other parts of my body were affected. Then I received a ray of hope from the Lord; the oncologist said that from his observation, the tumours could be removed surgically.

The surgeon confirmed that the tumours could be removed surgically. By God’s grace it happened that he was the best thoracic (specializing in the organs of the chest) surgeon in the country. On January 13, the day I was supposed to leave for the GCI gathering in the Philippines, I had the surgery to remove the tumours. Though I was in the intensive care unit the first day, my recovery was without any complications, and I was back home by the end of the week to rest and recuperate.

Genetic tests were performed on the tumors to determine whether I was likely to respond to a certain targeted therapy. Based on the tests, the oncologist prescribed a specific oral medication. I need to take these capsules for some time as a precautionary measure to prevent the cells from replicating. No other treatment is necessary.

I’m steadily improving and regaining strength. I have returned to normal activities and exercise—though for the moment, I’m doing brisk walking rather than running. Also, I’ve returned to my pastoral duties. But I missed seeing everyone in the Philippines.

God’s intervention was apparent; he reached out and pulled me out of the pit when all hope was against me. The situation was so bad that I thought my time was up. But God rescued me in the most miraculous way and restored me.

Thank you so much for all your prayers. Our great triune God has heard all your prayers.

By Devaraj Ramoo, Pastor

Prayer Guide—March 2024

“My whole strength lies in prayer and sacrifice; these are my invincible arms; they can move hearts far better than words. I know it by experience.”  ― Saint Therese of Lisieux

Join us in prayer! Our March Prayer Guide is now available with uplifting verses, reflections, and collective prayers.

To download the full March Prayer Guide and join fellow churches globally as we seek the Lord in unity, visit here. Feel free to share and invite others to join us in this beautiful season of prayer.

Never miss a day by receiving this Prayer Guide straight to your email inbox before the first of the month! Sign up here.

Regional Gatherings in 2024

Registration is now open!

Please join us for a weekend of training, appreciation, and worship. Everyone is invited.

Visit our website here to register and for more information, including details about lodging.

Registration will close on May 19, 2024.

LiLY Women’s Conference

We would love to invite you to celebrate our 20th year reunion.


20th Annual LiLY Women’s Conference
April 26-28, 2024
Embassy Suites in Independence, Ohio (in person)


But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion for him; he ran to his son, threw his arms around him and kissed him. Luke 15:20 (NIV)

Registration Fee:
$75 / $85 – Take advantage of our early bird pricing of $75 and register by Friday, April 5, 2024. The registration fee covers the meeting facilities, speakers, conference bag filled with goodies, plus lunch and dinner on Saturday.

Registration for ages 13-17 is at a discounted rate of $50.

Online registration ends on April 14, 2024.

Hotel Reservation/Cost:

Embassy Suites, 5800 Rockside Woods Blvd. Independence, Ohio

Overnight hotel rate is $129 per night, per suite, 4-person room (total with tax is $303.15 ­­­­­­for both nights – breakfast & manager’s reception included).

Click here to make your reservation online.

Group Name: LiLY Women’s Conference

Group Code: LWC

Central Reservations Number: 1-866-344-7548

Deadline for hotel reservations at the special rate is Friday, April 5, 2024.

Register today online at gccle.church/lily

If not registering online: Mail your registration fee and make checks payable to:

Grace Communion Cleveland, 4499 Canterbury Road, North Olmsted, Ohio 44070

(Please include your name, address, phone number, emergency contact name & address, and if you are staying for Saturday night dinner)

If you have any questions, please email us at: LiLYwomensministry@gmail.com

Rosa Hulse
Women’s Ministry Leader
Grace Communion Cleveland

Like/Follow us on Facebook at LiLYWomensConference.

Share Your Black History Celebrations

After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”(Revelation 7:9-10)

“This image of heaven gives us a clue that ethnicity and culture have some sort of eternal value. Our ethnic and cultural differences reflect God’s beauty and creativity. At the same time, those saints from different backgrounds are united in their worship of God. Diversity in unity is part of God’s design for humanity. Our cultural differences should be celebrated, and our unity in Christ should be celebrated even more.” From “Embracing Diversity by Dishon Mills. Read the full Equipper article here.

In the U.S., February is Black History Month. Black History Month, also known as African American History Month, is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing their central role in U.S. history. It is a time devoted to paying tribute to the generations of African Americans who struggled with adversity to achieve full citizenship in American society. Other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating Black history.

Black History Celebration, GC Fayetteville, NC, 2023

Does your congregation commemorate this diversity awareness month in a special way with your members and neighbors? If so, tell us about it!

We’d love to share your stories of Black History Month celebrations in Update! Send your story to info@gci.org.