Meet Our Team

Dr. Daniel Gilbert

CEO and Co-Founder


Dr. Daniel Gilbert is passionate about the transforming power of God to help people enter into a deeper relationship with the Triune God.  As a pastor, theologian, international speaker, author, humanitarian, ministry consultant, and coach, Dr. Gilbert is dedicated to teaching biblically-based principles to empower people to go deeper in God, grow stronger in life and go higher in their destiny.

Dr. Gilbert has been serving in ministry for over 33 years. An ordained minister since 1992 with the Presbyterian Church, Dr. Gilbert is the Co-Founder and CEO of EmPowered Living International Ministries, a non-profit ministry to help educate, equip, and empower leaders to transform communities through sound theology, the power of the Holy Spirit, and humanitarian action. He also has founded ELIM Theological Institute in Siaya, Kenya, training pastors in underdeveloped nations in theology, biblical studies and pastoral leadership.

Dr. Gilbert also is the Director of the Masters’ Program and an Assistant Professor for the School of Divinity at Regent University in Virginia Beach, Virginia. In addition, He has served in the pastorate as an Assistant Pastor in Aberdeen, Scotland, a Church-planter in Hampton Roads, Virginia, and Senior Pastor in Los Angeles, California. He served as Professor of Theology and Church History and the Dean of Students at The King’s University in Los Angeles.

He holds a Ph.D. in Theology from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, as well as a M.Div. from Regent University, and a B.Sc. in Business from Mars Hill University.  It was at Regent that Dr. Gilbert studied under Dr. J. Rodman Williams, in whom the Chair of Renewal Theology is dedicated to.  Daniel became Dr. Williams’ Graduate Assistant for over three years and was mentored by Dr. Williams for over 19 years.  Along with this blessing, Dr. Gilbert spent four months for his pastoral internship in Seoul, South Korea serving with Dr. Yonggi Cho at Yoido Full Gospel Church, one of the largest churches in the world. 

His first book, The Big 5: Discovering the Five Foundations Every Christian Needs to Know is available in March 2018.  His Course, “The Power of the Blood” is coming out soon. 

Dr. Gilbert also is hosting the radio program “EmPowered Living Radio with Dr. Gilbert” that airs on Voice of Hope Radio – Africa débuting in February 2018. 

Dr. Gilbert has a passion for the present-day movement of the Holy Spirit, for revival and for helping young men and women grow in sound theology with the power of the Holy Spirit!  Dr. Gilbert is up-to-date with current affairs and politics both nationally and internationally and has had a heart for a spiritual awakening for our country.

Dr. Gilbert has been married for over 32 years to Mary Beth, his college sweetheart and who also is an international speaker and contributing author in Women of Rock.  They have one precious daughter, Maria.  They have ministered in North and South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.  They currently reside in Virginia.


Photo by Deidhra Fahey - LA

Mrs. Mary Beth Gilbert

Co-Founder and Administrator


Mary Beth Gilbert is passionate about encouraging women to fulfill their destiny in the Lord. She desires to "come along-side" women to help them grow in different areas of their lives.  Married for over 32 years, Mary Beth uses her knowledge and wisdom in helping other women walk through different seasons of their lives.  She loves to encourage mothers in biblical and practical ways of caring for their children, including the balance of working and mothering.  Mary Beth has served in the ministry for over 25 years, even as she has worked in the business and academic worlds.  Mary Beth is a National and International Christian Women's Speaker and Bible teacher ministering throughout the United States, United Kingdom, South Korea, Argentina and Kenya, Africa.  She is a Contributing Author to "Women Who Rock". She is married to Dr. Daniel Gilbert and has a daughter and recently moved from Southern California to Virginia. Originally from the West Palm Beach, FL area.


Photo by Deidhra Fahey - LA

Rev. Brad M. Abley

Vice President of ELIM Theological Institute & Professor of Biblical Studies


It’s one of the greatest honors of Pastor Brad’s life to be able to partner with his best friend, Dr. Daniel Gilbert, in this gospel ministry! 

He is extremely humbled and grateful to God for calling him to co-labor with Him to build, encourage and strengthen His Church -- especially in Kenya with ELIM Theological Institute as Professor of Biblical Studies -- and throughout Africa!

Pastor Brad is the author of several commentaries, the latest being on 1 Thessalonians: A Church with a Powerful Legacy for Today’s Christian. His next commentary will be out in early 2018, and is entitled, The Parables of Jesus: How to Understand and Apply Them with Joy.

His weekly broadcast on Voice of Hope Africa reaches all 52 nations of that wonderful continent, as he teaches God’s people verse-by-verse through His Word, and as he also frequently gives salvation invitations to the unsaved.

His heart is especially to reach the unsaved in the 10/40 Window, and to teach God’s people in that region of Africa with sound teaching, in the fruit and power of the Holy Spirit.

He’s been happily married to his wife and ministry partner, Maureen, since 1983, and they reside in Chesapeake, Virginia. He has a Master of Divinity from the School of Divinity at Regent University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, from San Jose State University.

He and Maureen love to travel and snorkel and they are thrilled to lead believers in Jesus to the Holy Land, having led three trips there, plus a Footsteps of Paul tour of Greece, Rome, Patmos and Ephesus.

Pastor Paul Tawo

ELIM Kenya Administrator & 

ELIM Theological Institute Administrator


Pastor Paul Tawo has been the Administrator for EmPowered Living in Kenya since 2012, which includes his role at ELIM Theological Institute.

Pastor Paul has been in the ministry for over 25 years and has pastored two churches, where he is currently a Senior Pastor.

He is the founder and current President of Christian Ministers Fellowship that is unitifying pastors and churches in the Siaya region of Kenya.

Pastor Paul lost his wife of 20 years two years ago and is raising his three precious daughters.


John Jacoby

Orphanage Coordinator &

Mission Co-Coordinator


Perez grew up in Ngiya-Siaya- Kenya, around 40 miles northwest of Kisumu, Kenya’s third largest city and located on the shore of Lake Victoria.  Her father was a renowned medicine man and witchdoctor who had 17 wives and over 45 children. In 1998 Perez was born again and joined African Word Ministries (AWM), which runs the children’s home, in 1999 as a volunteer. She would later become the manager of Ebenezer Children’s Home and the Children’s church Pastor. She is also the administrator of African Word Development Organization an NGO which runs alongside with AWM .Many of her family are born again, but a few are still involved in the witchcraft, as Perez says “it brings a lot of money because it’s an easy job…people are looking for solutions, people are looking for answers…we as Christians need to get serious because people are looking for answers and people are looking for answers in the wrong places.”

Both Perez and John have a strong desire to raise awareness of the needs of the children in Siaya, Kenya and to raise support to make an eternal difference in their lives. Ebenezer children’s home takes needy children and trains them to be mature responsible Kenyan citizens who can bring a change and  a sustained impact in the society. Touch a life change a life.

Perez Jacoby

Orphanage Coordinator &

Mission Co-Coordinator


Perez grew up in Ngiya-Siaya- Kenya, around 40 miles northwest of Kisumu, Kenya’s third largest city and located on the shore of Lake Victoria.  Her father was a renowned medicine man and witchdoctor who had 17 wives and over 45 children. In 1998 Perez was born again and joined African Word Ministries (AWM), which runs the children’s home, in 1999 as a volunteer. She would later become the manager of Ebenezer Children’s Home and the Children’s church Pastor. She is also the administrator of African Word Development Organization an NGO which runs alongside with AWM .Many of her family are born again, but a few are still involved in the witchcraft, as Perez says “it brings a lot of money because it’s an easy job…people are looking for solutions, people are looking for answers…we as Christians need to get serious because people are looking for answers and people are looking for answers in the wrong places.”

Both Perez and John have a strong desire to raise awareness of the needs of the children in Siaya, Kenya and to raise support to make an eternal difference in their lives. Ebenezer children’s home takes needy children and trains them to be mature responsible Kenyan citizens who can bring a change and  a sustained impact in the society. Touch a life change a life.