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GCU President/CEO August Report

August 30, 2023

Enjoy the Sunshine

I do hope that you are enjoying your summer thus far, my favorite season! The hotter the better for me! I truly believe that sunshine and the beautiful summer landscape that God has created places you in a “better frame of mind.” Why is it that the summer just flies by and the dark, gloomy cold days of winter just seem to last forever? I do enjoy the first major snowstorm of the winter season and the cold and snow for the Christmas Holiday Season, but beyond that forget it! I guess I’m showing my age as I remember as a child, snow and cold temperatures were not an issue! My friends and I would explore the wooded areas close to my home, admiring the massive icicles formed over the caverns and ice skating on open mine pits that were still prevalent from the once vibrant coal mining industry in Northeastern Pennsylvania. Again, so many fond memories that I attribute to the wonderful parents I was blessed to have!

I invite you to once again check out the various summer activities scheduled in several of our Constellations. Please visit the GCU’s website – www.GCUusa.com – and “click on events” to view all the volunteer, fundraising and social events planned for 2023. We continue to experience great turnouts and several new faces participating in various events. The GCU supports a substantial budget for our volunteer, fundraising and social events in addition to our financial support of our Byzantine Catholic Parishes, the Saints Cyril and Methodious Byzantine Catholic Seminary, various other Christian organizations and our communities. Through the Grace of God and Divine Intervention by the GCU’s Patron, St. Nicholas of Myra, the financial strength of the GCU allows for the continued support of our Founders’ “Mission”, “Vision” and “Purpose” in organizing the GCU over one hundred and thirty-one years ago.

We are in the process of finalizing our financial statements for the first six months of 2023. The GCU’s assets continue to increase and stand at $2.7 billion reflecting a $52.6 million or 2% increase over year end 2022. A net gain of $3.1 million from operations before realized capital gains / losses was recorded for the first six months of 2023. Surplus declined by $1.7 million and stands at $217.7 million. This reduction is primarily due to a $4.5 million Asset Valuation Reserve (AVR) adjustment required by statutory accounting rules. The AVR is a reserve that protects against possible future investments impairments of positions within the GCU’s overall investment portfolio. This adjustment recorded is a result of a $50 million increase in our bond portfolio thus far in 2023 and for the realized losses recorded in 2022. Please be advised that this increase to the GCU’s Asset Valuation Reserve also strengthens the GCU’s Total Adjusted Capital. A detailed report on GCU’s financial statements through June 30th, 2023 will be presented by our CFO Tim Demetres in the October issue of the GCU Magazine.

We are pleased to announce that the Board of Directors has appointed Reverend Valerian Michlik as the GCU’s Spiritual Advisor. Father Valerian replaces our former Spiritual Advisor Rt. Reverend Mitred Archpriest John S. Kachuba who unexpectedly passed away in February of this year. Our sincere thank you to Very Reverend Richard I. Lambert, a former Spiritual Advisor, who graciously accepted to serve on an interim basis. Father Michlik was sworn in as the GCU’s Spiritual Advisor at the third quarter Board Meeting.

In closing, my best wishes to you and your family for a safe, fun and relaxing summer! Enjoy the summer landscape that God has provided!
Goodness Is Great!

George N. Juba | GCU President/CEO 

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