Friday, February 13, 2009

Missionary Spotlight

Pedro and Cecelia Tarquino; Columbia

Pedro was born in Faca, Colombia, South America in June 29, 1952. His parents met the Lord during the first year of their marriage, and by the grace of God, he was raised knowing every day about the Father, the Lord Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit according to the Holy Scriptures. Along with his parents, his relatives also met the Lord and a church was started in their house and just celebrated the sixtieth anniversary of their church in Faca.

Pedro grew up during a time of persecution and political violence. They were discriminated to a point where they could not attend public school. In 1972, he moved to Cali, South West Colombia, because of a job with the government. Since the very first day, he started to attend the Central Presbyterian Church, one of the oldest Christian Evangelical churches in Cali. Six months later Pedro quit his job and started to work as an Assistant pastor at the church. In 1974, he then had the opportunity to work in the church and study Civil Engineering in Cauca Valley University.

During these years of study, an Intervarsity group was formed under his leadership and worked with him in Evangelism and Discipleship. During these years he lived in the university dorms, and had a wonderful opportunity to be a witness of Jesus Christ. Just last week, one of his peers reminded him of an episode, when a communist leader told him, “If you continue to preach your gospel, I am going to chop you.” I extended my hands and told him: “Even if you chop me every little part of my body shall tell you about the love of God.” This student was never hostile to him again. Pedro then graduated as a Civil Engineer in 1980 and worked as a Building Contractor.

During this time he then met his wife Cecilia and they married in July 24, 1982.

After this, they prayed for four years, until the Lord opened a door for them to go to the US for further studies. In a miraculous way, they got in contact with the First Presbyterian Church in Gadsden, AL. Since they were looking for programs in Counseling for his wife and Theology for Pedro, they were advised and supported to go to RTS in Jackson, MS. At RTS,

Pedro was then invited to be the pastor of the Central Presbyterian Church in Cali in 1991. His emphasis in the church and the Presbytery was: Personal devotional based upon the reading of the whole Scripture throughout the year; God-center worship and service; Personal evangelism and discipleship; Biblical and Scriptural stewardship; and the opening of a new mission field every year and 50% of the budget for missions. In 1998 Pedro went back to RTS with his family to work on a PhD. in Intercultural Studies. During this time they developed “The Colombian Project” in order to establish a Christian University in Colombia.

Pedro says, “My family and I continue with our vision and work in Colombia, with the hope and conviction that a Christian University is a reality in our country.”

They have three children: Alejandra Maria, Pablo Samuel, and Jonathan David.

No comments: