Dr. Michael Gama was born and baptized into Roman Catholicism, though at five years of age, his family left the Catholic Church. They then spent years in Evangelicalism, and Dr. Gama attended and graduated from Evangelical schools (Westmont College and Fuller Theological Seminary, respectively) for his BA and M.Div. degrees. Post-seminary he had a sense that even with, or perhaps even because of, his educational experience, his faith was missing something vitally important. He began reading extensively in the patristics, particularly in the monastics and the eastern fathers. As a result, about 20 years ago he, his wife, and three children began attending an Orthodox church where they remained for five years. Then, 15 years ago they moved permanently to the Maronite Catholic Church, attending St. Sharbel Maronite Catholic Church in Portland, Oregon, where they are still parishioners. Michael received his Abouna’s blessing to go through a doctoral program at a local seminary where he did his work primarily in the area of soteriology — theosis — the eastern Christian understanding of union with God, by grace. His doctoral dissertation was published by Wipf & Stock and is entitled, Theosis; Patristic Remedy for Evangelical Yearning at the Close of the Modern Age. Dr. Gama is grateful for the opportunity to participate with Avila Institute students in exploring the call to grow toward toward fellowship with the Holy Trinity. He and his wife have been married 37 years, have three children and eight grandchildren. They live east of Portland, Oregon in the Columbia River Gorge.