If you are unable to make it to the 2015 ICOM conference, we will be broadcasting each session live online. Use this link to be directed to the viewing site.
The International Conference on Missions exists to Encourage, Equip and Enlist workers for the Harvest.
Known as the National Missionary Convention until 2011, the International Conference On Missions has been serving missionaries and the Great Commission since 1948. In March of 1948, J. Russell Morse was in the home of John T. Chase for dinner, and asked, “Why isn’t there a gathering for missionaries?” He went on to express the need for a time where missionaries can talk shop, fellowship and encourage each other. So in 1948, the day prior to the NACC started, a few dozen missionaries got together. That practice continued for several years growing to a few hundred people. Then in 1954, the National Missionary Convention was formed, as it’s own conference.
The NMC grew from several hundred to sometimes a few thousand. It became big enough that, after many years with volunteer presidents, in 1966 Walter Birney was designated the first director while preaching in Copeland, Kansas. Mr. Birney would stay in this role for 43 years. Walter and his wife, Iva Lou, worked tirelessly while planning conventions all over the country. Iva Lou retired in 2008 while Walter retired in 2009.
In 1998, David Empson became a volunteer student director, while maintaining a full-time youth ministry at the Hazelwood Christian Church in Clayton, Indiana. The Windows of the World teen convention was created to meet inside the National Missionary Convention, drawing from the strengths of the adult program while offering “hands-on programming” for students. In 2001, David joined the NMC staff full-time from an office graciously made available by Hazelwood Christian Church.
In 2007, during the transition time, Jim Chamberlin was hired to succeed David as the student director. Other staff members have since joined to what makes up the current staff members.
In 2010, Fran Anderson was hired to help determine the advantages of changing the name of the National Missionary Convention. The NMC had grown over the past several years close to 11,000 attendees in Indianapolis in 2006. It was felt that the name no longer described what the NMC had grown to become for the following reasons:
- It was no longer “national” since there were twenty plus countries represented every year. It had become international.
- The word “convention” gives the idea that there would be delegates and issues to vote on with some kind of authority to make decisions. That has never been the case. We are a conference.
- It was very apparent that this was no longer a gathering for “only” missionaries; rather, the conference had become for those who love being on mission.
International + conference + on mission = ICOM.
After holding nine focus groups, it was decided to change the name and was announced in Atlanta, 2011, during the last National Missionary Convention, that the NMC would be called the “International Conference On Missions”. The name change was well received.
Join us for 2016 ICOM Pre-con!
We are so excited to be offering seven pre-con events this year at ICOM in Lexington, KY! Be sure to head to conference early to join in the excitement! Pre-con events will begin on Wednesday, November 16 and continue on Thursday, November 17.
Check out the variety of pre-con events we will be offering below:
For Missionaries Only (FMO)
Wed 5 – 9 pm & Thurs 8 am – 12 pm
This Pre-Con is a time for missionaries to minister to other missionaries. We pray that this will be a time of personal and spiritual healing and growth for each one. Sponsored by ICOM. NO registration cost. Led by Margaret and Paul Pennington.
Free Wednesday night hotel stay! (Reimbursement after forms submitted to ICOM)
Free Wednesday night dinner (sponsored by Kairos) & Thursday morning continental breakfast!
Community Health Evangelism (CHE)
Wed 9 am – 4 pm & Thurs 9 am – 3 pm
This seminar includes small-group interaction, problem solving, and self-discovery, while increasing understanding of the CHE process. Sponsored by FAME. $30 registration fee. Led by Bill Warren, Terry Dalrymple & Bryan Benz.
Standards of Excellence In Short-Term Missions (SOE)
Wed 6 pm – 9 pm & Thurs 9 am – 5 pm
The Standards Introductory Workshop is an 8-10 hour seminar designed to help adoptive members understand how they can incorporate and achieve competence in all Seven Standards. It also provides a review of how to form and manage a Peer Review process, should a member organization desire to pursue full accreditation. The workshops are taught by experienced SOE trainers (usually two). They are interactive, use case studies and small group discussions. MISTM-grid theory and the supporting principles behind the standards are reviewed.
4 Chair Seminar
Thurs 10 am – 3 pm
This Pre-Con builds upon the material from the 4 Chair Discipling book by Dann Spader, shared during ICOM’s Reset 2 Tour, calling American Churches to disciple the way Jesus discipled. This is the first step in step in the Muvement Series. Dann Spader will begin this session and then Randy Nash will teach the bulk of this seminar, having been trained and certified to do so.We will look at how Jesus built a movement of multiplying disciples.
Sponsored by Reset. $55 registration fee.
Thurs 9 am – 5 pm
(You must have previously completed the 4 Chair Seminar to attend) This will be from 9 am to 5 pm on Thursday. As we have travelled the nation proclaiming that we should disciple as Jesus discipled, many attenders liked the idea, but wanted to quickly move to the “how to” conversation. This is that “how to”. Kevin Boll has been working with congregations for many years about how to structure your church organization to make disciples who make disciples. This seminar builds on top of the 4 Chair principles. You will need to have attended the 4 Chair seminar before you attend this seminar.
$55 Registration fee.
Mobilizing Your Church for International Student Outreach
Thurs 9 am – 3:30 pm
Come learn about how we can reach foreign college students for Jesus Christ and challenge them to serve His Kingdom. Sponsored by Crossroads International. $10 registration fee. Led by Greg Swinney.
Disciple Making Movements
Wed 8 am – 5 pm & Thurs 8 am – 5 pm
This Pre-Con will equip you to make reproducing disciples among the unreached peoples of the world (international focus). Led by Eric Derry. $35 registration fee (Limited to 36 people).
Thurs 9 am – 3 pm
This Forum is a gathering of those who train workers for field service, whether as professors, counselors, or mobilizers. $25 registration fee (payable upon arrival). Email Doug Priest, Executive Director of CMF, for more information and registration. DougPriest@cmfi.org