Before starting an Evangelist school a pilot test program is a must to learn what works and what does not. The following is a brief, but not complete, outline for such a pilot program.
My suggestion for the counties for the pilot test program are - Preble county and Darke county. Preble county, the population is 41,886 - 74 % rural - with 64 % of the county are non-churched. Darke county, the population is 52,507 - 66 % rural - with 57 % are non-churched. These two counties were chosen because they are connected with each other which will facilitate the Evangelists and Colporteurs to work close with each other for support and success. The chosen counties are prosperous farming communities with a large percentage of the population that does not have an Adventist church home.
The Evangelists - there should be at least four Evangelists, working two by two, selected to work in these two counties to establish new congregations in the county seats of Eaton and Greenville.
The chosen Evangelists will report to the Ohio Conference office and work under a chosen leader. The leader is one who is a strong supporter of the Pilot program. This person will make the program a success. The leader will work in close contact with Evangelists and Colporteurs in the two counties - often visiting in the field.
The ideal Evangelists would be retired people (preferably couples in their sixties) have an outgoing personalities and have a well established experience with their Savior. They can come from many types of work experience. They will be trained in public evangelism before going in their assigned county. They will be paid to cover their expenses for their work in the county.
There are many non-church people in the counties that will be the targeted people to work for. In part this will require a door to door canvas. Holding cooking schools in the city and surrounding towns will help to make contacts for the Evangelists to follow up on. Church members in the adjoining counties will be encouraged to support the Evangelists on Sabbath services as a small company is established.
The Colporteurs: these workers are a very important element in the outreach of these two counties. Their work will be to make contacts for the Evangelists to follow up on. A guaranteed salary for their work will relieve them of the pressure of just making a sale and moving on. It will allow them to spend time getting to know the people they come in contact with. They will keep focused, placing the books and literature in the homes is their prime purpose. The Colporteurs will work closely with the Evangelists and report any interests they find for them to follow up on.
The Colporteurs will also report to the program group leader in Ohio Conference office.
With the Colporteurs being in the homes of the people they will be able to assess the needs of the family. When they find families in need it will allow the Dorcas Societies in the churches of Montgomery and Miami counties to come to their aid. This will get the area churches participating in the planting of a new church in these two dark counties.
The most important element of the project is that the workers will work closely together as a team. The one important identifying mark of those first Christians was that they were in "one accord" and thousands were converted in a day.
We are that chosen generation that Peter wrote about in 1 Peter 2:9 "But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;" We are that chosen generation that Adam, Enoch, Job, David, Daniel, Joel, the Apostles, Paul and all who have looked forward to our day when Jesus comes the second time to redeem us. What a thrilling thought to be one of the chosen generation that finishes the work that began at Pentecost. I praise God for His great love who called you and me to be a part of that chosen generation?