There are a few marquee ministries the mainstream media covers—if only critically. Yet there are some major ministries doing significant things around the world.
Of course it is well known to my Charisma readers, but outside Christian circles few have heard of the International School of Ministry (ISOM) headed by Berin Gilfillan, shown here with me at NRB in Nashville last winter. Dr. Berin Gilfillan is the CEO & founder of ISOM. Formerly the television producer for Reinhard Bonnke, Gilifillan was trained at Regent University and Fuller Theological Seminary. His ministry is based in Redlands, Calif.
It is well known to our readers because about three times every year, ISOM places an ad on the back page of Charisma or Ministry Today. When I learned of their exponential worldwide growth, from a few hundred training schools in 2000 to more than 15,000 training sites today in 142 nations, I wanted to find out more. Berin told me each year he adds about 1,000 new ISOM schools “and we have found no better place to expose our vision than these two Charisma Media publications.”
So just what is the International School of Ministry? ISOM is the world’s largest video Bible school. The original curriculum was recorded bilingually and now exists in over 70 languages. The power of the program is that it captured some of Christianity’s finest and most respected teachers, each bringing forth their life messages. More than 30 outstanding leaders teach 160 sessions of quality training, including Jack Hayford on integrity, Joyce Meyer on wilderness mentalities, John Bevere on the fear of the Lord, Reinhard Bonnke on evangelism and Bill Winston on faith.
Many have called ISOM “…the training equivalent of the Jesus Film.”
One of the greatest treasures of the ISOM is a seven-part series by Dr. T.L. Osborn on the Christ Connection. After recording this series, Dr. Osborn said: “As far as I know, the development of this (ISOM) curriculum is the most important thing happening on the earth for the Kingdom of God today.”
In the past few years, ISOM has expanded on these initial recordings with the development of other multilingual, church-based curriculums to help pastors develop leadership worldwide.
A total of 12 new Bachelor Modules have been added, with more than 360 sessions of new teaching, to help ISOM students go even further in their training & understanding!
Women of the World teachings were recorded to target and train the church’s females, which account for greater than 60 percent of the church worldwide. YouthBytes, a high-energy youth discipleship tool, airs on more than 1,000 television stations worldwide and is used in local church youth groups, even within Cleansing Stream Youth retreats.
CD-BOKS (Community Development BOKS) is a practical, bilingual video teaching series with medical doctors, health practitioners, agriculturalists, dentists, and environmental experts to help promote sustainable community development in countries around the world.
In order to provide a vehicle for a greater reach of all these materials, ISOM formulated a plan this past year to take these critical, life-saving teachings to those who can’t afford it. Vision 2020 Plan places close to 250 hours of our training on micro SD chips and enables them to deliver it in a small, solar-powered portable pack to anywhere on earth.
The smartphone-sized video projector, along with a couple of compact speakers, can train up to 300 poor and unreached people at a time. Vision 2020 brings teaching starting with the basic salvation message, but ending where effective laborers are trained and communities are lifted practically from poverty.
Berin told me: “The goal of the Vision 2020 Plan is to place 20,000 training schools in the mother tongues of different people groups, both the poor and unreached, by the year 2020. The technology of today now enables us to bring the comprehensive training of our family of curricula to every tribe, tongue, people and language. We are thrilled with the start we have had in 2012, but believe the best is yet to come as the global Church embraces the task of training with the convenience of technology.”
Thank God there are ministries doing this type of work and utilizing technology. It doesn’t matter if it is a “household word.” In fact, they probably operate better under the radar screen.
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