"My heartbeat is to encourage OM to remain true, both to the Gospel and to our core values, as we seek with passion to bring hope to the lives of men and women and boys and girls in almost every part of the world. For my part, I will continue to strive to give back to OM what the Lord has given to me, so that I, and we together, our generation of OMers, may be even more worthy of His calling."
On 1 September 2013, Lawrence Tong, from Singapore, became OM's third international director, succeeding Peter Maiden, who retired from the role after serving for 10 years, and George Verwer, who founded OM in 1957.
Lawrence combines an infectious enthusiasm both for the mission of OM and for the wellbeing of its members around the world. He met his American wife, Susan, while serving on the Doulos and married in 1989. They have two adult sons, Josh and Benji, of whom they are extraordinarily proud.
Lawrence's spiritual journey began with a commitment to Jesus Christ at an evangelistic meeting in Singapore in 1973. He visited the Logos when it sailed to Singapore in 1974 and joined the ministry team on Doulos in 1978. Susan joined OM in 1979, and over the next 10 years she served in several OM ministries, including on board Doulos, and with teams in India, Bangladesh and the US.
Lawrence's leadership journey has included serving on the Board of OM Singapore, as OM country leader for Taiwan, as director of Logos II, and in financial development with the OM Ships USA office in Florence, South Carolina. Lawrence also led the fast-growing work of OM in China with a significant focus on welfare and agricultural programmes, which he and a team of local partners established in the Sichuan region following the earthquake of 2008.
"I am a debtor to an OM heritage that has shaped my life and ministry. The servant leadership of so many past and present OM colleagues still inspires me."
VIDEO - Reaching the World: Lawrence Tong (from Biola University)
Learn about OM's Global Leadership Team:
Sue Priestley, Peter Tarantal and Viv Thomas.