Will Purinton of Kansas City, Kansas, a missionary with One Mission Society since 2011, has been involved in theological education in South Korea since 2003. Serving on the faculty at Seoul Theological University and preaching in Korea Evangelical Holiness Churches, Will has been committed to a fourfold ministry: (1) theological education in the evangelical tradition and the Korean context, (2) preaching and teaching in churches to foster Christian conversion and character, (3) academic research and writing to achieve historical authenticity, theological integrity, spiritual integration, and missiological understanding, and (4) finding a theological voice for the working poor.
After a radical conversion experience with the Jesus Movement in Kansas City, Will joined the U.S. Army and served two tours in South Korea as a chaplain’s assistant. With the help of the GI bill, he completed his undergraduate studies at the University of Kansas in religious studies. Next, he studied missiology at Nazarene Theological Seminary and church history at both Lincoln Christian Seminary and Christian Theological Seminary, earning three master’s degrees. It was in his missiology classes at NTS that Will heard clearly the call to mission, studying under the mentoring of pioneer and veteran Nazarene missionaries. During this time, Will met Kumok, and they were married and began to serve together in church ministries in Illinois.
With a desire to be prepared for a teaching ministry in theological education, Will earned a Ph.D. in theological studies at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. After terms teaching at Korea Nazarene University and Asian Center for Theological Studies and Mission, he joined the faculty at Seoul Theological University, where he has taught since 2008.
His ongoing passion is to form evangelical theologians who will help transform the world with the Gospel. Through partnership with the Korea Evangelical Holiness Church and Seoul Theological University, One Mission Society has helped create and sustain the Wesleyan-Holiness Summer Study Program. Through the program’s five years, Will has served both as faculty (teaching evangelicalism) and as a coordinator, assisting both OMS missionaries and OMS-related theological educators to journey to South Korea and learn about our shared faith tradition.