Grace Vancouver Church Staff

  • mike Hsu

    Lead pastor

    Mike is the proud father of Mia, Isaac and Calvin and has been married to his beloved wife Tanya since 1995. Mike graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary in 1998 with his Masters of Divinity and recently with his Doctor of Ministry from Covenant Theological Seminary. Mike was ordained as a minister in the Presbyterian Church in America in 1999. After spending 15 years in Lincoln, Nebraska where the Hsus discovered lifelong friendships and vibrant Christ-centred community, in the summer of 2013, the family loaded up the moving van and took the call to Vancouver. Mike is most passionate to give God's people a vision for the whole of life being a call to follow the Lord Jesus and a stewardship of God's varied and many good gifts (1 Pet. 4:10). What are some other things that Mike truly enjoys? Hanging out with his family, riding his bike, swimming (sometimes in the ocean), skiing when possible, enjoying on occasion a beer and fine cigar, shooting hoops, doing Crossfit, watching Kansas Jayhawk basketball, reading and romancing Tanya :).

  • mark swanson

    associate pastor

    Mark moved to Vancouver in 2009 from New York City, where he served as Pastor to the Homeless at All Angels’ Church.  His move from the Megalopolis of the East Coast of the United States to the Rainforests of the West Coast of Canada has been a pleasant change of place and pace.  He has a passion for social justice, ecumenicism, and looking for God in the everyday moments of life.  He also enjoys good food, hockey, reading and the beautiful setting of Vancouver and its environs.  Mark’s dog, Sam, is the “church mascot” and spends his days sleeping belly up in Mark’s office or greeting visitors at the door of the church offices.  Sam loves food as well, and hockey, but his reading level leaves much to be desired.

  • Karli baldwin

    spiritual formation director

    Karli grew up right here in Vancouver and has seen many changes in the city.  She first worked as a nurse at the Women’s Hospital and the BC Cancer Agency (BSN at UBC).  After nursing for some time, she returned to school to be an elementary school teacher (BEd. at UBC).  She then became an intern and staff member at St. John’s church.  Eventually she studied at Regent College to obtain a Master of Divinity and be better equipped to care for people in the church.   Karli spends time with her loving husband, Andrew, and active children, Anastasia and Luke, who are known for their compassion and kindness. Karli serves part-time at  Grace, inviting people to explore life's big questions and to know Christ. She also loves helping people to love God more and to grow in friendship with Him. 

  • tarak george

    Director of Children's ministries

    Tarak has a deep love for the Church and its people - especially its little people. He enjoys supporting the work of children’s ministry and equipping families for discipleship. Tarak also serves as a Pastoral Intern at the church, and is in the process of completing his Master of Divinity at Regent College, UBC. He has lived in India and the Netherlands before moving to Canada, where he met his lovely (and rather exuberant) fiancé Cathie. When he is not stepping on Lego bricks at the church, Tarak enjoys cooking, board games, 70s rock, and date nights with Cathie :).

  • Victor Olawaiye

    Office Administrator

    Victor comes to Grace Van with a background in Law and Human Resources. Originally from Nigeria, he is currently in Vancouver pursuing a certificate in business administration. Victor is truly blessed to be part of the Grace Van community. As Office Administrator, he wears many hats --helping our Sunday service run smoothly and with grace. Please stop by the office (during office hours, of course!) to meet Victor and say hello.

  • John Smed

    Director of Prayer Current

    After becoming Christians in the Swiss Alps community of L'Abri, John and Caron Smed adopted the open inquiry and deep fellowship set by this community as their ministry model. Eventually John and Caron started Woodgreen Presbyterian Church in Calgary, AB. After seven years, they moved to Atlanta, GA, where John became the Coordinator for New Churches for Mission to North America. Another seven years later, the Smeds moved to Vancouver, BC, to start Grace Vancouver Church, and set up a new national church planting network in Canada called Grace Network. John's call through Grace Vancouver is to help start churches all across Canada. He has also initiated a prayer training program called Prayer Current that equips churches across Canada and internationally in kingdom-centered missional prayer.