Developing spiritual and biblical leaders are vital for churches to mature and grow. The importance of this to McDermott Road is emphasized by our participation and support of two schools that dedicate their efforts to maturing both men and women to serve the local churches within their country and local area.
The Biblical Institute of Central America (BICA), one of three programs in Central America, is located in Jinotepe, Nicaragua and is a school designed to train “evangelists.” Some students become preachers and some do not. Both men and women make a two-year commitment to live at BICA. Most are single, but married couples join the program as well. Students put in more than twelve hours daily between the classroom, door knocking, and preparation for the next day’s lessons. They are assigned to a small church each weekend where they knock doors, work with the youth, preach on Sunday’s, etc. Students also participate in a one-week campaign each month, knocking doors and setting up home Bible studies. Each year their efforts average 1,000 restorations and baptisms.
By the time a student completes their study, he or she will have knocked on a thousand doors, conducted 300-400 home Bible studies and baptized up to fifty people. A unique aspect of BICA is that students are told in advance that this training will not result in a paid preaching position. They are taught to see themselves as Paul, the tentmaker and find a way to make a living on their own while leading in church and sharing the gospel. For this reason, the school provides vocational training as well. McDermott Road was one of the primary sponsors in getting the Nicaragua school started in 2008.
This school of preaching was established in 1995 in the Rio Grande Valley of south Texas. It is a three-year degree in Biblical studies that is taught in Spanish and is free of charge to students. Classes are taught nightly at three different locations of Hispanic church of Christ buildings. The purpose of the school is to offer training necessary to enable men to preach, and to equip local church members to teach and lead.There have been thirty-seven graduates who are now serving and leading in God’s Kingdom.
A great benefit of the school is that all of the classes are recorded on CD and DVD and sent to many other Hispanic congregations and missionaries. In 2011 there were 1,300 recipients of this material in twenty-five states and sixteen countries. Carol Robertson is director of the school and is assisted in the administrative tasks by his wife Eunice. Carol has preached among Hispanic congregations in Texas, Mexico, and Peru and was also teaching at the Baxter Institute in Honduras before taking direction of the South Texas School of Preaching.
Short-term mission trips are taken by McDermott Road members to benefit churches that have students and graduates from the School of Preaching. Missions Minister Mark Bryson has also been an annual teacher at the school. If you would like to assist in any of these efforts, please contact Mark Bryson.