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Collection 056 Records of OMS International, Inc.

Identifier: CN 056

Scope and Contents

News releases, prayer letters, reports and field studies. The documents all related to the work of OMS which had workers in Asia, Europe, Africa, and Latin America in the areas of radio broadcasting and Bible distribution. Key OMS figures featured include founder Charles Cowman, his wife, Lettie Burd Cowman, Wesley Duewel, and E.A. Kilbourne.

[NOTE: In the Scope and Content Section, the notation "folder 5-2" means "box 5, folder 2."]

The collection consists of annual reports, field studies, and news and prayer letters. [Issues of Intercesso-Gram, a prayer and praise newsletter published by the OMS monthly are in folder 1-23. Although the style and format of the Intercesso-Gram changed five times between 1963 and 1978, it nevertheless consistently contained current information from each of the mission fields in which OMS served.]

The field studies (folder 1-1) are for the countries of Haiti, India, Indonesia, Korea, and Taiwan. Each of these studies contains brief information about the history, government, population, language, religion, etc., of the country. They explain the beginning of OMS ministry as well as its ongoing ministries of evangelism, training schools and others; they contain a map of the country and a selection of national recipes.

The News Release, (folder 1-4) published by OMS from December 1966 to February 1978 includes stories on the dedication of the new world headquarters of the OMS at Greenwood, Indiana, in November 1966; revival on mission fields; inauguration of Dr. Wesley L. Duewel as OMS president, and other items of interest to supporters of OMS ministries.

Finally, the collection includes the quarterly, midyear, and annual reports of Wesley L. Duewel, president of OMS from 1969. The annual reports contain information about the major steps and accomplishments of the agency. A great bulk of the report is contained in the President's Annual Plans regarding proposals for the following year. Every major department and mission field of OMS is mentioned and goals and objectives are spelled out. The midyear and quarterly reports are actually progress reports regarding conventions, retreats, board sessions, finance, church growth, appointments, and headquarter personnel activities.


  • Created: 1963 - 1978

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Biographical Information

The Oriental Missionary Society was founded in 1901 by Charles E. and Lettie (Burd) Cowman. One year later, they were joined by Ernest A. Kilbourne. They formulated the policies of the mission and adopted the pattern of work. In this they were assisted by Juji Nakada, a Japanese, whom they met in the States and through whose influence they began work in Japan. The early name used for the work was the Cowman and Kilbourne Work. The current official name of the Society includes only the initials "OMS," hence OMS International, Inc., and does not incorporate the former title "The Oriental Missionary Society."

In 1901, the Society began work in Japan. Successively, the fields of Korea (1907), China (1925), India (1940), Columbia (1943), Greece (1948), Brazil (1950), Taiwan (1950), Ecuador (1952), Hong Kong (1954), and Haiti were entered. By 1964, work had extended into twelve nations. In 1957, the Society sent missionaries to work in Nigeria under the United Missionary Church. Work was also established in Indonesia (1971) and Spain (1972).

Following the policy adopted at the beginning, the founders and their successors established seminaries in each of the fields where they opened work; systematically distributed the Bible; and broadcasted gospel programs either through its own facilities or over commercial stations. As of 1978, OMS had 470 missionaries (active and under appointment); 1,888 national workers; 1,414 organized churches with over 122,000 members; 15 seminaries and Bible institutes training 1,741 students; one international radio station reaching 46 countries; and three medical centers treating approximately 28,000 patients annually.


1.00 box

Language of Materials


Accruals and Additions

The materials in this collection were given to the Billy Graham Center Archives from OMS in December 1978.

Accession 78-49, 79-79

February 9, 1979

Abraham Labiano

M. Schimmels

R. Shuster

Related Materials

The following items were transferred to the Evangelism and Missions Collection, Buswell Library:

Ferguson, Dwight. Motivated Men.


1969/4; 1973/1; 1974/1, 4; 1975/2, 3; 1976/2, 3; 1977/1, 2, 4,; 1978/1, 2, 3, 4

The Missionary Standard

1946, 1947, 1948, 1949, 1950, 1951, 1953, 1955, 1958, 1959, 1961, 1963, 1964, 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972

OMS Outreach

1973, 1974, 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978

Collection 056 Records of OMS International, Inc.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Evangelism & Missions Archives Repository

501 College Avenue
Wheaton IL 60187 US