Since its beginning, One Mission Society has been in the business of developing Christ-like leaders for the global church. One of the ways this has been accomplished is through the planting of theological training institutions for the development of local church leaders all over the globe. Through the years, many of the Bible colleges and seminaries started by OMS have become leaders in their respective global regions among Protestant Evangelical theological schools. The Emmaus Biblical Seminary of Haiti is great example of one of those schools.
In 1967, OMS started the Emmaus Vocational Bible School (EVBS) in a small suburb of Cap-Haitian, Haiti. Through Radio 4VEH, an evangelism and discipleship ministry of OMS, churches were growing and the need for theologically trained pastors was growing with them!
The vision for EVBS was to develop both vocational and theological training for local pastors, church planters, and evangelists for the many small churches in northern Haiti. In 2000, after 33 years of equipping hundreds of local churches with theologically trained leaders, the school became Emmaus Biblical Seminary of Haiti. The vision for the rebranding of the school was to offer undergraduate and graduate-level theological training for an ever-growing Haitian church.
Today, Emmaus Biblical Seminary of Haiti is among the top 10 theological schools in the Caribbean and has one of the premier graduate programs among Caribbean theological schools. EBS has also partnered with Indiana Wesleyan University to deliver a masters in Theological Studies to Haitian students. The current enrollment at EBS is approximately 110 students with a mostly Haitian, fully credentialed faculty.
The following have been a direct result of the strategic partnership between EBS and OMS:
1. EBS has maintained its Wesleyan-holiness distinctive within its curriculum and training programs. Even today, EBS is one of only three theological schools in Haiti with a Wesleyan-holiness profile. Thanks to OMS, EBS believes that the best of the Gospel is the rest of the Gospel. This emphasis at EBS means the promotion of the transformation of moral character that is a necessary result of conversion (sanctification and discipleship development).
2. Because of EBS’s relationship with OMS, there is a continued emphasis on church planting throughout EBS training programs. In fact, approximately 40 percent of graduates go into some sort of church-planting ministry.
3. OMS has empowered the development of Christ-like leaders for the church in Haiti through providing highly credentialed faculty to teach intensive courses four times a year on the campus.
4. OMS has been a driving force in helping EBS raise funds for many development projects. In 2010, EBS relocated to a brand new, state-of-the-art campus five miles from its original location. Without OMS, this would not have been possible.
Without OMS, EBS would not exist today. Furthermore, EBS is one of dozens of schools with OMS’ fingerprints all over it. This is the business of the development of leaders for the global church. This is the business of Theological Education at OMS.
By Matt Ayars, rector and professor at EBS
To learn more about EBS and Haiti, watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3HaFJ8w50IE&feature=youtu.be