Carlos was born in Barcelona, Spain. He understood the Gospel for the first time as a college student in 1979. As a young man, he read the New Testament roughly 20 times to determine the truth and sort out what he believed. After his conversion, he immediately began sharing his faith and over time felt a calling to serve in full-time ministry. Soon after, Carlos moved to Turkey where he has lived and ministered for 25 years. During this time he launched a cooperative effort of evangelical agencies and Turkish churches to aid in the coordination of ministry efforts and church growth throughout the country. Carlos currently serves as the Senior Pastor of the Istanbul Protestant Church Foundation (IPCF). He and his wife have three children.
In 2006, after two and a half years of meetings, interviews, and visits to government officials, Istanbul Protestant Church Foundation (IPCF) finally received recognition by the government. This hard-won status made it the first ethnic Turkish Protestant church to be officially recognized. Now with legal status, IPCF is working to grow the small evangelical community in Turkey through starting new fellowships and training. Partners International supports the work of IPCF, which is authorized, by law, to minister to the needs of the Protestant community anywhere in Turkey.
"In Turkey it is not easy to be a believer. We need your prayers."
I grew up in a Muslim family but never felt able to “reach” God. I continually felt emptiness in my life. As a child, I picked up a New Testament when passing by a church. But, it seemed to me as if it were a fantasy book and I didn’t understand it.
During my college years I came to believe in Buddhism. When I met the woman who is now my wife, we both professed to be Buddhists, but we began to suffer a series of illnesses and financial problems. Nothing was going right in our lives.
Suddenly, God put in me the desire to read the Gospel once again. I began researching online and started to read the New Testament. This time that book that seemed a fantasy story years ago, began to speak to my heart.
My wife and I have suffered persecution from our families for our faith, but I’ve always had a great desire to serve the Lord. Currently I am serving as one of the elders of the church. In Turkey it is not easy to be a believer. We need your prayers.
Operation World labels Turkey as the “largest unreached country in the world.” At some 72 million people, with an evangelical population estimated at little over 3,000, the title is sadly well-deserved. Never mind that Paul lived in Tarsus, or that the seven churches of Revelation, or indeed a whole portion of Acts developed in Turkey.
The official registration of the Protestant Church in Turkey in 2006 created new legitimacy for indigenous Christian faith. A growing curiosity about Christianity is felt in the country, and Turkish believers are increasingly taking on leadership of local churches and gaining a vision for church planting despite ongoing persecution.