Oriental Theological Seminary (OTS) is a graduate institution of higher learning and is committed to the lordship of Jesus Christ, academic excellence, and ministry formation. The vision of OTS is to nurture Christian leaders for postmodern as well as developing contexts towards intellectual proficiency, theological coherence, spiritual maturity, and practical efficiency.
At OTS we recognize the various gifts of students for Christian ministry that await development and direction. We strive to fulfill the aspirations represented by the students even as we envisage their varied callings to be pastors, missional leaders, educators, counselors, community workers, and social activists. OTS is therefore committed to equip students with academic and professional skills while instilling in them a deep conviction of who they are as disciples of Jesus Christ as they prepare to minister in a complex world.
OTS, since its establishment in 1991 by the Nagaland Baptist Church Council (NBCC), has conducted 20 commencements with close to 400 graduates in its list. OTS is located 18 km South-west of Dimapur town in a lush green space covering an area of 82.5 acres of land, generously donated by the inhabitants of Bade village.
With the theme “Being Transformed to Transform,” OTS is en route towards contributing significantly to the ongoing ministry of Christ and His Kingdom to the ends of the earth.
The NBCC had long felt the need of establishing a theological seminary in Nagaland. A milestone in the history of the NBCC was thus achieved with the founding of OTS in 1991. Under the ownership and sponsorship of the NBCC, OTS continues to aim for excellence as an institution and as a community of God.
The convictions behind OTS have been clear from its very birth. On the practical side, OTS would fulfill the felt need of having a graduate level theological school in Nagaland. This would ease the growing demand of theological students seeking admissions for higher studies in other parts of India or abroad for lack of adequate institutions at home. OTS has the distinctions for being the first theological seminary to provide graduate studies in Nagaland.
A more serious conviction of establishing OTS, is the primary purpose of imparting dialogical theological education and upholding the uniqueness of Jesus Christ in the realm of theological studies. Such a focus we believe, will prepare men and women for relevant and adequate leadership in our churches and society.
The first academic session began in July 1993 with the first graduating class in 1996. Since then, our graduates as of 2016 consist of close to 400 men and women, placed in different ministries at home and abroad. We are proud of our alumni and their ministries as they live out their calling and commitment.
FOCUS AND GOALS
Oriental Theological Seminary exists to develop Christian ministry leaders who can influence culture with an integral biblical worldview. Our intent is to train men and women to be more effective witnesses to Jesus Christ and to encourage development of the skills that are necessary for ministry in today’s world. We are committed to training future pastors, missionaries, educators, youth workers, ministers to children, administrators, social activists, and community workers.
The academic curriculum at OTS is designed not only for academic quality but to nurture the call and commitment of all the students and to equip them to serve effectively and relevantly in an ever-changing world. Beyond the campus pedagogy a key component of education at OTS takes place outside the classroom. The practical ministry and internship programs contribute immeasurably towards holistic development of the students, equipping them with rich empirical experiences to minister to people of all ages and backgrounds.
The goal of academic excellence is perceived to be a Christian responsibility at OTS. OTS is firmly committed to admitting only the best, who will effectively and meaningfully communicate the gospel to an ever changing and complex world. This is nowhere more visible than in our teacher/students ratio. At OTS we believe in quality and not in quantity.
Besides academic excellence, spiritual growth is as essential for a theological student as is academic development and practical experience. For this reason OTS takes a deep interest in the life of all the students to see that they are guided to their highest ability in exercising their spiritual gifts for the benefit of the community. Chapel services are conducted twice weekly for personal enrichment and as a ministry committed to the rest of the seminary community. There are also opportunities for small group work, spiritual direction and mentoring, and discipleship. These are some of the ways in which OTS nurtures the spiritual growth of our students.
STATEMENT OF FAITH AND OBJECTIVES OF OTS
This Statement of Faith expresses the purposes and specific objectives of OTS. Academic and co-curricular programs at OTS are planned and carried out in the hope that all members of the seminary community will:
ACTIVITIES OF OTS
Besides our primary focus on academic excellence and ministry formation, the community of OTS is also involved in various activities throughout the year.
Weekend Practical Ministry (WPM)
WPM is a distinctive feature of education at OTS. With target groups in the 10 Km radius surrounding OTS campus, WPM covers diverse forms of ministry from men, women to children and youth. A significant outreach is to the Muslim community attracting around 100 children and their families. OTS also reaches out to street children, old people and the poor in the slums of Dimapur.
Dignity of Labor (DoL)
DoL is an initiative for social change which began in 1993. DoL challenges students to cultivate a right attitude that working for a living is dignified and worthwhile no matter what profession one practices. OTS students engage in handicrafts, sell vegetables, clean streets, cut hair, pull rickshaws or simply polish shoes on the streets of Dimapur at regular intervals.
The Environment Project
OTS is committed to creation care in permeating ecological concerns and of conserving the environment. While our practical engagement is a year round activity, the community of OTS is also intentional in setting aside a week during the Spring and takes initiatives to proactively involve in an environmental issue within and outside of the campus.
Short Term Mission (STM) and Internship
Every Summer OTS sends out students for short term mission activities and internship to the rural areas in Nagaland, neighboring states of Assam, Tripura, Arunachal Pradesh, and as far as Thailand. The STM and the internship programs are requirements to expose students to various ministries of teaching, evangelism, counseling, and social work. Students get a feel and experience the reality of hands-on ministry in the real worl and are tremendously enriched by such exposures.
The Spring season at OTS is full of community activities which are extended beyond the campus. Spring Fiesta is one such event with entertainment and learning projects comprising sports, music, films, literature, and the fine arts. These activities give exposures for the community to be in tune with the world and in dialogue with indigenous and pop culture which become pedagogical contexts through the intersection of theology and contemporary culture. Spring Fiesta is often a collaboration with secular colleges, youth groups, and is extended to the marketplace.
LIBRARY & IT
The OTS Library has a holding of close to 15 thousand volumes of books and resources and the facility is computerized with the latest automation technology. OTS is also connected with the rest of the world with high-speed broadband Internet and the campus is Wi-Fi enabled.
OTS has produced a good number of pastors, missionaries, teachers, youth leaders, ministers to children, and social activists, which may be attributed to the rich experience gained from “hands-on” theological education while being a student. With 20 batches of graduates and an alumni strength numbering close to four hundred, OTS students are now spread far and wide beyond Nagaland in Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Andamans, the Indo-Nepal Himalayan range, various parts of India, and as far away as in Africa.