In 2 Timothy 2:2, Paul encourages those who lead to train others: 「多くの証人たちの前で私から聞いたことを、ほかの人にも教える力のある信頼できる人たちに委ねなさい」(第2テモテ2:2） This is the heart of Overseas Instruction in Counseling (OIC)! OIC strives to bring the Word of Truth across cultures by training men and women in biblical-based soul restoration, so they can train others.
The OIC ministry goes far beyond providing training, by establishing real partnerships with organizations abroad. Upon establishing a partnership, we send out our team members who teach a well-established and highly regarded biblical counseling training curriculum. Our remote partners provide us with room-and-board, teaching facilities, and transportation. This approach fosters a deep level of commitment in local churches as our remote partners take responsibility for overseeing, promoting, and running the training events.
Once OIC is committed to train in a region, the curriculum is translated into the local language, as needed, adapting it to its unique culture and nuances with the aid of local pastors and translators. OIC’s teaching techniques encourage the host partners to stand on their own without American financial support.
In 1986, Wayne Vanderwier found himself at a crossroads in his pastorship. He began to see the need for proper soul-care in the local church, in the form of biblical counseling; yet he had very little training in this area. He was determined to learn how to provide soul care to his congregation and to ensure it did not stop with him. Wayne understood that we all provide counseling daily in some form and wanted to equip his congregation in a way that would allow them to do so biblically. Wayne and his wife, Susie, spent the next 20 years helping their local church be transformed through proper biblical counseling. The outstanding results of this journey gave them a deep desire to spread their knowledge to church pastors in other parts of the world. In 2006 they founded OIC to do just that.
The training journey of OIC began on the islands of Luzon and Mindanao in the Philippines and then continued to Moscow, Russia, in 2007 with a six-module training program. What Wayne soon realized through his time in Russia was that Russians can teach Russians better than any foreigner; therefore, they should be training each other how to do Biblical counseling. This transformed OIC into a train-the-trainer mission.
As we began to expand into other parts of the world, our ministry opportunities quickly grew from local churches to Graduate-level academic programs. In 2009, OIC began its first ever Graduate program in Egypt, at the National Theological College and Graduate School (NTCGS). Then Rob and Mary Huber joined OIC in 2011, as our second missionary couple, taking over coordination of training in the Philippines while Wayne began work in Ukraine and Lebanon. Rod had been a pastor for many years in America and felt a calling to train pastors overseas. In partnering with OIC, they have been blessed with seeing the fruitful labors of gospel work for all issues of life, including the organization of Biblical Soul Care Philippines. The Hubers continue to work with OIC in Central America preparing pastors to begin and develop discipleship and leadership training in their churches.
Over the years OIC has continued to grow. We hosted our first ever Missionary Training Conference (MTC) in 2013 and God provided four more couples to join the team. Since then, OIC has been planning Graduate programs and Church Leadership Training modules in a variety of locations, seeing fruitful results in local churches. The students and graduates are now training up faithful pastors and other church leaders in Biblical counseling.
OIC continues to be blessed by the Lord as we receive invitations to train in more and more areas of the world. In the first 15 years of our ministry, OIC has started training programs in over 30 countries. Where there are people; there is a need to train pastors, church leaders, and congregants that will care for the church body biblically, growing in all knowledge and application of the truth. Dr. Andrew Rogers has recently completed a three-year leadership transition and as of 2019 began serving as OIC’s Executive Director. Rogers had been partnering with OIC as an Associate Teacher in both Church Leadership Training modules and Graduate academic programs for several years and is eager to lead OIC as we anticipate continued growth in the future.
Our goal is simple, to continue bringing glory to God by providing train-the-trainer services to the biblical counseling world and to see the gospel impact lives worldwide.