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Announcement from Chairman Webber

March 14, 2013

Dear Members of the United Church of God,

This letter is to inform you that United Church of God president, Dennis Luker, died today, March 14. He spent his last physical days residing in his hometown of Seattle, Washington, surrounded by his loving wife, LeeAnn, and their immediate family.

Thank you for your prayers and fasting during this challenging time for them, and for God’s blessings on this transitional period for the United Church of God. Our Heavenly Father’s will for Denny has been made known at this time—even though it is not news that we humanly desire. At the same time, I am reminded of his constant encouragement to reflect on the promising words of Romans 8:28: “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”

Mr. Luker knew “that my Redeemer lives” (Job 19:25) and now awaits the trumpet call with so many other faithful saints down through the ages (1Thessalonians 4:13-18). I know that LeeAnn would ask us all to continue to pray for others who are challenged with spiritual, emotional and health issues—and that God will grant His peace to them (Philippians 4:6-7).

Dennis and LeeAnn, as a pastoral couple, have given 50 years of their lives in service to others. And yes, they truly came as a “couple.” They are loved far and wide beyond our own Church sphere, throughout the entire Church of God community. He brought an enthusiasm for speaking of the always-present love of God and the necessity of having Jesus Christ as the center of our lives.

Denny’s service to the United Church of God had a dynamic impact not just recently, but also in our formative years. He served on the original Advisory Council of Elders in 1995. Since then he has served as a member of the Council of Elders, as a church pastor, as a regional pastor, been part of the Ministerial Services team and of recent years, our Church president.

Please remember LeeAnn, the children, the grandchildren, the great-grandchildren and all their family members—in our prayers that God will grant them comfort in this most challenging of life’s chapters. More details will be forthcoming regarding pending memorial services.

In my role as chairman during this transitional time, I have maintained frequent contact with the Council and the home office operation managers to ensure stability. Now, in accordance with our governing documents (Bylaw 9.5, Vacancies in Offices), the chairman of the Council of Elders becomes the acting president of the United Church of God, an International Association, until a new president is selected by the Council and assumes office.

I look forward to working with the Council of Elders in the presidential nomination process currently underway. As Council members, we appreciate your prayers for God’s guidance for all in the weeks to come.

May the God of peace and comfort be with all of you at this time,

Robin Webber—Chairman and Acting President

March 14, 2013 - Posted by | Council of Elders, Home Office | , , , ,

27 Comments »

  1. Mrs. Luker you and your family are in our prayers.

    Comment by Alicia Leonard Wollan | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  2. Such heartbreaking news, my prayers are with Mrs. Lurker and family.

    Comment by Linda Neat Keeney | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  3. I didn’t know Mr.Luker personally, but I had met him at the Winter Family Weekend a few years ago. My prayers are definitely with his family during this time.

    Comment by SportsInStyle | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  4. Yes, our prayers are with you and your family and I do thank God that he is no longer in pain or suffering. It will difficult to have the other half of the couple that you are gone. God will give you strength.

    Comment by Virginia Finlay | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  5. Mr Luker has left a wonderful legacy for the Church Of God as well as his family. I believe he will always be remembered for his gentleness and his faithfulness. He now awaits the greatest future God has provided for mankind. Our prayers are with his family, the church and our church leadership at this time. Well done you good and faithful servant… We will meet again…

    Comment by Doris Penney | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  6. Mrs. Luker you and your family are in our prayers. We are very saddend by the illness and death of Mr. Luker, but we know God is in charge and we want His will to be done in any matter. Mr. Luker’s race is won and he is at rest until the return of Jesus Christ. He was a very loving, kind, compassionate, humble servant of Jesus Christ and we are very thankful for all of his dedication and love he gave to all of God’s people. Our prayers are for your comfort and strength during this very difficult trial and that God will help you adjust to life without this wonderful man being there by your side. Isaiah 57:1, Psalm 116:15. We love you and thank you for your loving service and dedication as well. Nathan and Barbara Abbott

    Comment by Barbara Abbott | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  7. To the Luker family, my thoughts and prayers go out to you all. He was a wonderful man of God. He and his wife did so much for us all. He will be missed.
    Grace DeVenny

    Comment by grace.devenny@gmail.com | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  8. I have so many fond memories of the Lukers, having grown up in the northwest, during part of their 50 years of service to God’s people. Sincere condolences to the family – prayers for God’s comfort during this difficult time.

    Comment by L. Anderson | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  9. We are so very sorry to hear this. The family is in our thoughts and prayers!

    Comment by Jim & Sue Johns | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  10. One of the good guys, not the news i had hoped for, a huge loss to the Church, but what a great example of what it is all about. Prayers are with his family, really had hoped he would get a few peaceful years in retirement with them. Truly sad news.

    Comment by paul spenser | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  11. We are so very sorry to hear this sad news. Our thoughts and prayers are with the Luker family, their friends, and all of the brethren. We must look forward to that time when we will stand with him, and our other loved ones who have died in Christ, in the presence of our God. With love, The Bortree Family – Greensboro, NC Congregation

    Comment by Michele Bortree | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  12. Our prayers and loving concern are with Mrs. and family at this time. This lose touches our hearts.
    David Maltais NW AZ congragation.

    Comment by David Maltais | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  13. Denny married my wife and myself. We are almost to our 25th wedding anniversary. Our family certainly gives our sympathy and regards to all of those that are grieving.

    Your Friend,
    Bill Lussenheide

    Comment by Bill Lussenheide | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  14. He and his wife… what beautiful examples! Our Great God always knows what is best for each and everyone of us! We are all so very much saddened by Mr. Luker’s death.. our thoughts and prayers are with and for his family at this time of sorrow!

    Comment by Helen & Bernie Braman | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  15. We were truly blessed to have you Mrs.Luker and your husband serve God and all of us these many years. May God our great Father comfort and strengthen you during this most difficult time. May His Kingdom come quickly. Much love; Armida

    Comment by Armida Eljoke | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  16. Everyone who knew Denny Luker knows what I say is true: Denny Luker was the end time Barnabas..He encouraged all of us and never attacked or denigrated anyone. Thank God that took him at 4:00 a.m. in his sleep. We will see him in the first resurrection.

    Comment by natasha and dave teague | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  17. On behalf of the approximately 260 members of the Kingston, Jamaica, Church of God, International congregation which I Pastor, as well as those in three other CGI congregations here , may I extend condolences to the leadership and membership of the United Church of God during this time of loss. Denny Luker has been a great servant of God who has served God’s people faithfully for half a century. He will be missed. His pioneering work in the Church of God to foster greater understanding of the issues facing gay people and to provide an avenue for those struggliing wqith same-sex attraction has to be noted, and is indicative of the pastor’s heart that he possessed. His role in standing up for the truth in 1995 is also not to be forgotten.Well done, good and faithful servant, uou have fought a f good fight! Ian Boyne

    Comment by ian boyne | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  18. We are so very sorry for your sad news. Our thoughts and prayers will be with the Luker family, all of their friends and the brethern. They were a very sweet couple. Mrs. Luker you will continue in our prayers through this time.

    Comment by Donna Richey | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  19. I will always remember you and your husband for your kindness and friendliness. You and your family will certainly be in my prayers! I have been widowed now for 8 years after 51 years of marriage so I have an idea of your loss. The only comfort we have comes from knowing that our Father is always with us and “eye has not seen nor ear heard” what He has planned for our future.

    Comment by Betty Johnson | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  20. It’s a very sad morning…yet a very happy one knowing the Mr. Luker has fought a good fight and endured to the end…the whole world will be mourning…

    Comment by Cecile Cinco | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  21. What more can be said, we in Australia had a special contact with Mr. Luker, his widow and surviving family members will be in our prayers.
    Remembered with love, Kevin and Hilda Gray

    Comment by Kevin & Hilda Gray | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  22. Denny was a true friend. Always kind,caring and true to Mel and me. I will remember him fondly. May LeAnn find peace in her knowledge of God’s plan thru her grief.

    Comment by Pat Williams | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  23. Like the old guard fell in the original wilderness, so now the old guard falls in the wilderness of the people(Ezek.20:35-38)

    Comment by Myra McQueen | March 14, 2013 | Reply

  24. There were times in the past when Mr. Luker helped me, by his uplifting words while I was unable to attend the Feast of Tabernacles. He said on a video that the Church will not forget those of us who could not attend ,and that his prayers were with us. That gave me strength to cleave to God the Father and his Son Jesus the Christ during that time. Thank You ! Mr Dennis Luker You are greatly missed.

    Comment by Glenn Griffin Sr. | March 15, 2013 | Reply

  25. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you, Mrs. Luker and family. I had the chance of meeting and talking with Mr. Luker at the Women’s conference in Kennesaw. I enjoyed that time. Mr. Luker was truly a great example. His love for the church family was so evident. From the first time we heard him speak we could see the humble and dedicated source of humility. We loved him and will miss him. Mrs. Luker, you and the family will remain in our thoughts and prayers. We look forward to seeing you again soon. With our love and heartfelt sympathy. Melvin and Sadie Parks The Greensboro, NC Church

    Comment by Sadie Parson Parks | March 16, 2013 | Reply

  26. I remember Mr. Luker….so very kind….low key…..and STRONG…The iron feather. I keep with me not only memory of his encouraging sermons but the warmth and concern of his genuine beingness. I pray God grant Mrs. Luker and family the comfort of each other, friends, family and their years of wonderful memories to carry them through along with the knowlege that God always has a better plan.Rosemary Parker former member WWCG, Long Beach.

    Comment by Rosemary Parker | March 16, 2013 | Reply

  27. My wife and I were very impressed when we met Dennis and LeeAnn Luker. When we talk about “servant leadership” I feel Mr. Luker embodied this. He never bragged about himself and what he did for the work of the Church, he just talked about reaching out to all in the Church of God community and coming together as one family. He will be greatly missed and I would wish that anyone who would be a leader in the Church would follow Mr. Luker’s example of humility and love. I look so much to seeing him again in the Kingdom of God!

    Comment by Basil Kopey | March 20, 2013 | Reply


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