Preparing students for service to the nations and neighborhoods at the lowest possible cost.
The Reach Training Institute (RTI) story began in the hearts of leaders at Salem Alliance Church (SAC) in Oregon, with a passion for training pastors and international workers who are debt-free and field-ready. Field-readiness is defined as biblically trained, theologically discerning, culturally engaged, Holy Spirit-empowered, and skilled for effective ministry.
RTI enrolled its first cohort of students in January, 2014, in direct response to dozens and dozens of teenagers in Salem who have made commitments to world missions since 2006. After seeing very few of these students enter into full-time ministry, the SAC Governing Board and Pastoral Management Team decided they were no longer willing to sit by and watch the ministry dreams of some of their best and brightest fade away. College debt prevented many from pursuing the call to ministry, therefore they developed a leadership training program in partnership with Crown College, providing a low-cost, accredited undergraduate degree, emphasizing practical, hands-on experience.
THE BIG PICTURE
MTI to RTI
The first Bible college in North American history, established by Christian & Missionary Alliance founder A.B. Simpson in 1882, was devoted to serving unreached people and inspiring the church to fulfill Jesus’ commission of world evangelization (Matthew 28:18-20).
Established as the Missionary Training Institute (MTI), the first graduates boarded ship in New York City on November, 1884. The leader of that first missionary band, John Condit, contracted dengue fever in the Congo during the spring of 1885, and died four months later, “having given his all – his life – for Africa, the land he loved so well” (June, 1885, The Word, Work, and the World, Alliance Life Archives).
Since those first days of courageous global engagement, scores of ordinary men and women have been equipped with basic Bible training and practical ministry skills in order to reach lost people around the world. A formally-trained seminarian from Knox College in Toronto, Canada, Dr. Simpson regarded theological education as “often merely intellectual, scholastic, and traditional,” and that sometimes “God has to put us to school again to unlearn much of what man has crammed into our brains, then to sit at the feet of Jesus” (Simpson, March, 1880, The Gospel in All Lands).
The MTI story intersects Salem Alliance Church history in the person of C.C. Fowler, grandfather of current lead pastor Steve Fowler. C.C. attended MTI from 1929 to 1931 and established a long-standing tradition of faithful international service with the C&MA (carried on by his son and daughter-in-law Chuck and Midge Fowler in China with the Alliance for over 40 years).
To the Ends of the Earth
Established in October of 2013 to send out laborers into the harvest, Reach Training Institute hopes to build on the MTI tradition of equipping people with a clear call to full-time Christian service to the ends of the earth.
We dream of a time when individuals and families from the Pacific Northwest, will be unleashed into the world as pastors, church planters, and international workers with the gospel of Jesus Christ. Many who have a sense of calling to career ministry are hindered from responding to the call with an unmanageable load of debt amassed during their college years. According to a recent study (2015, CNBC: The High Economic and Social Costs of Student Loan Debt), U.S. student loan debt has reached $1.2 trillion, with over 40 million borrowers who have an average individual balance of $29,000.
OUR CONVICTIONS (STATEMENT OF FAITH)
There is one God (1), who is infinitely perfect (2), existing eternally in three persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. (3)
Jesus Christ is true God and true man. (4) He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and born of the Virgin Mary. (5) He died on the cross, the Just for the unjust, (6) as a substitutionary sacrifice. (7) All who believe in Him are justified on the grounds of His shed blood. (8) He rose from the dead according to the Scriptures (9) and is now at the right hand of the Majesty on high as our great High Priest. (10) He will come again to establish His kingdom of righteousness and peace. (11)
The Holy Spirit is a divine person, (12) sent to indwell, guide, teach, and empower the believer (13) and convict the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment. (14)
It is the will of God that each believer should be filled with the Holy Spirit and be sanctified wholly, (15) being separated from sin and the world and fully dedicated to the will of God, thereby receiving power for holy living and effective service. (16) This is both a crisis and a progressive experience wrought in the life of the believer subsequent to conversion. (17)
The Old and New Testaments, inerrant as originally given, were verbally inspired by God and are a complete revelation of His will for the salvation of men and women. They constitute the divine and only rule of Christian faith and practice. (18)
Men and women were originally created in the image and likeness of God. (19) They fell through disobedience, incurring thereby both physical and spiritual death. All men and women are born with a sinful nature, (20) are separated from the life of God and can be saved only through the atoning work of Jesus Christ. (21) The destiny of the impenitent and unbelieving is existence forever in conscious torment, (22) and that of the believer in everlasting joy and bliss. (23)
Salvation has been provided through Jesus Christ for all men; and those who repent and believe in Him are born again of the Holy Spirit, receive the gift of eternal life, and become the children of God. (24)
The Church consists of all those who believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, are redeemed through His blood, and are born again of the Holy Spirit. Christ is the Head of the Body, the Church, (25) which has been commissioned by Him to go into all the world as a witness, preaching the Gospel to all nations. (26) The local church is a body of believers in Jesus Christ who are joined together for the worship of God, for edification through the Word of God, for prayer, fellowship, the proclamation of the gospel, and observance of the ordinances of baptism and the Lord’s Supper. (27)
Provision is made in the redemptive work of the Lord Jesus Christ for the healing of the mortal body. (28) Prayer for the sick and anointing with oil are taught in the Scriptures and are privileges for the Church in this present age. (29)
There shall be a bodily resurrection of the just and of the unjust; for the former, a resurrection unto life; (30) for the latter, a resurrection unto judgment. (31)
The second coming of the Lord Jesus Christ is imminent (32) and will be personal, visible, and premillennial. (33) This is the believer’s blessed hope and is a vital truth which is an incentive to holy living and faithful service. (34)
(1) Deuteronomy 6:4; (2) Matthew 5:48; (3) Matthew 28:19; (4) Philippians 2:6 - 11; (5) Luke 1:34 - 38; (6) I Peter 3:18; (7) Hebrews 2:9; (8) Romans 5:9; (9) Acts 2:23 - 24; (10) Hebrews 8:1; (11) Matthew 26:64; (12) John 14:14 - 18; (13) John 16:13, Acts 1:8; (14) John 16:7 - 11; (15) I Thessalonians 5:23; (16) Acts 1:8; (17) Romans 6:1 - 14; (18) 2 Peter 1:20 - 21, 2 Timothy 3:15 - 16; (19) Genesis 1:27; (20) Romans 3:23; (21) 1 Corinthians 15:20 - 23; (22) Revelation 21:8; (23) Revelation 21:1 - 4; (24) Titus 3:4 - 7; (25) Ephesians 1:22 - 23; (26) Matthew 28:19 - 20; (27) Acts 2:41 - 47; (28) Matthew 8:16 - 17; (29) James 5:13 - 16; (30) I Corinthians 15:20 - 23; (31) John 5:28 - 29; ( (32) Hebrews 10:37; (33) Luke 21:27; (34) Titus 2:11 - 14