Matt & Elizabeth Smart
ON STAFF SINCE 2016
I was raised in a loving Christian home in south Arkansas. My family was very active in our church, but I was not born again until I was 17. In March of 1996, I began to read through the Gospel of John and the book of 1 John. I began to experience conviction of the Holy Spirit because of my sin. After a few weeks, I turned to Christ for forgiveness and became a new creature in Christ.
I immediately wanted my friends to know Christ and looked for opportunities to share how Jesus saved me. As I was reading through the gospels as a new Christian, I knew the Lord had called me to be a "fisher of men" (Matthew 4:19). I went to college at Ouachita Baptist University to prepare for ministry. I met my wife, Elizabeth, there, and we both received Bachelor's Degrees in Biblical Studies.
In 2004, we moved to Louisville, Kentucky, so I could study for a Masters Degree in Evangelism at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. While at Southern, I developed a deeper passion for evangelism and got connected with a student-led evangelism team. I first became acquainted with OAC after stumbling across their website while researching ways to effectively proclaim the Gospel publicly.
In 2009, we moved to central Pennsylvania to pastor New Hope Baptist Church of Duncansville. While prayerfully considering how we could mobilize the church to proclaim the Gospel, I remembered OAC and sent an email requesting training.
I was trained by Zane Dempsie in Sketchboard Evangelism in 2012 and have participated in open-air evangelism regularly since then. I am passionate about proclaiming the Gospel to college students. In 2016, I attended the Sketchboard Evangelism Training in Baltimore, Maryland.
It is my life's mission to know Christ and make Him known and our family (my wife, Elizabeth, and our two children, Sophia and Samuel) is excited that OAC is a part of that purpose.
Anniversary: December 21, 2002
Matt - June 15
Elizabeth - June 23
Sophia - April 16
Samuel - January 16