Our new Alumni Fund/Alumni Relations director at Life Pacific has overcome adversity and today celebrates God’s leading in her life.
By: Rod Light
Anyone who knows Deborah Melahouris, Life Pacific’s new Director of Alumni Fund and Alumni Relations, knows she is a gracious survivor, a dream-pursuer, and a relationship builder. Her new role at LPC is a dream-come-true for this minister, wife, and mother of three who considers every day she’s alive to be a miracle of God.
In 2014, Deb experienced a major stroke that left her unable to speak, walk, or carry on the simplest of tasks. Doctors gave her a 1% chance of recovery as friends and family contended for divine healing. For two weeks after she finally regained consciousness, Deb only spoke Spanish, a second language she learned as a little girl from her Mexican grandfather.
Her husband, Michael, whom Deb met at age 12 while at Foursquare winter camp, was stunned that his wife no longer seemed to understand him when he spoke to her in English. In time, she regained the ability to speak both languages. Her determined spirit and a lot of patience brought Deb back to life allowing her to once again pursue the dreams God had in mind for her.
Pursuing dreams is a big deal for Deb. Working on the LPC campus in Southern California is a fulfillment of one of those dreams, and she is already at work getting to know the names of some 400 students who will call San Dimas home this fall. She hopes to personally know each one and possibly be an influence on their lives.
“One of my teachers in high school impacted me in a way that made a real difference,” she says. “I want to give back to other students in the same way, to walk with them as they pursue their dreams, to fulfill God’s mission in their lives.”
Part of that fulfillment for students at LPC comes through God’s provision of scholarships that help pay for their college education. Many of those scholarships come from alumni, and Deb is committed to building relationships with benefators on behalf of students who need assistance as they pursue their educational dreams.
Building relationships with LPC alumni is a joy for Deb. She already knows many of them through her 16 years working in the corporate secretary’s office at The Foursquare Central Offices in Los Angeles, first with Herb and Roberta Schneidau and more recently with Dr. Sterling Brackett. Deb says her years working with Foursquare ForeRunners and credentialed ministers gave her a head start on her current responsibilities and relationship building at Life Pacific.
Deb says her years working with Foursquare ForeRunners and credentialed ministers gave her a head start on her current responsibilities and relationship building at Life Pacific.
Deb loves people. One of her concerns about leaving the Foursquare corporate offices for a new position was that she might be leaving behind a supportive family of co-workers who encouraged her through much of her adult life, not the least of which was her recovery from a major stroke. At LPC, Deb has found an expanded family of equally supportive and welcoming co-workers, and she could not be happier as part of the community.
Through her lifetime of Christian service, Deb ministered as Children’s Pastor of the Hispanic congregation at The Church On The Way in Van Nuys, Calif., and lived in Europe for two years where the family gave themselves to the ministry of Mercy Ships, a fleet of hospital ships serving the needs of the forgotten poor in developing nations.
“God has taught me to cultivate a heart for leaders who have gone before us,” she says, “And, I intend to get to know as many of them as possible in the days and weeks to come.” - Deborah Melahouris
A trained school teacher with a degree from California State University in Chico, Calif., Deb currently is earning her M.A. degree in Leadership and Organizational Studies at Azusa Pacific University.
Deb’s determination, love of people, and vast network of relationships make her a perfect fit for her new role at Life Pacific. She is aware that God has opened the doors for her in life, introduced her to new people, and gifted her for this season. “God has taught me to cultivate a heart for leaders who have gone before us,” she says, “And, I intend to get to know as many of them as possible in the days and weeks to come.”