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Local Missionaries in Türkiye

Map of Turkey

Population:

84.2 million

Evangelical population:

0.04%

People groups:

68

Unreached people groups:

45

10:40 window
Located in the 10/40 Window

Türkiye

With most of its land mass in the Anatolian peninsula of western Asia and a lesser part on the Balkan peninsula of southeastern Europe, Türkiye has a rich cultural and religious history and is a major political force in the region. Though overwhelmingly Muslim at 96.2 percent of the population, most adherents are nominal, as few have knowledge of the Quran, yet fiercely loyal, as Islam is integral to nationalistic fervor.

Another paradox: while Türkiye has had a secular government for most of the past century, the current administration of Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been marked by strongly Islamist tendencies. At the same time, the non-religious portion of the population has been growing, with estimates ranging from 3.1 percent to into the double digits. Only 0.04 percent of the population evangelical, according to Joshua Project.

Local missionaries in Türkiye report unprecedented openness to the gospel among a growing number of Turkish Muslims and Muslim refugees from Syria and elsewhere. With so few evangelical Christians, however, churches can hardly support evangelists and pastors, and they need donations for their monthly expenses and for tools such as ministry vehicles vital for outreaches to refugee camps.

One effective ministry has planted churches in the Black Sea region, and they need assistance for rental of their worship places. Meantime, the demand for Bibles has increased as Muslim refugees’ disillusionment with Islam drives them to seek answers elsewhere. Local workers request assistance to keep Bibles and New Testaments in stock, as well as an apologetics book written by a native missionary. These books are distributed in refugee camps and prisons, during one-on-one outreach and in stands in front of a church building.

Media and social media are having an increasingly strong impact. One native missionary publishes a magazine that clarifies who Christ is and addresses various topics from a Christian perspective, and another has a radio program with a large audience. The latter also posts teaching and preaching on Internet outlets, reaching a potential audience of millions. Through responses to these media, local missionaries are seeing the prevalence of disillusion with Islam and interest in the person of Christ.

Sources: Joshua Project, Wikipedia

New Testament Bible in English and Arabic

How to Pray for Türkiye

  • Pray for protection of local missionaries, as they are facing increasing threats and attacks in media, on the street and among powers and authorities.
  • Pray that Muslims putting their faith in Christ will be protected from family and societal opposition and will find support in Christian community.
  • Pray that native leadership will be developed in spite of a national ban on Christian seminaries in the country.

More stories from Türkiye

Share Christ’s Love With The Hopeless in Türkiye

A student at an elite school happened upon a table outside a church that was stacked with New Testaments, and he took one and began to read. The next day, he returned to the church and confessed to the ministry workers that he had been contemplating suicide because he could find no joy in life. But when he read the New Testament, he realized how much God loved him.

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Reach Out To Refugees in Türkiye

Christian workers from a native ministry visit a refugee camp once every two weeks and not only distribute supplies for their basic needs such as medicine, heaters, food, water, and clothing, but also build relationships with the families who have lived there for many years, gifting them with New Testaments and answering their questions about Christ.

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Lead The Lost To Christ in Türkiye

A young Muslim man began to question his beliefs, sensing there was something missing from his life despite his devotion to Islam. “I yearned for a more personal connection with God,” he said. “A deeper understanding of His love and purpose for my life.” The man came across a magazine that included articles about Christian faith and personal testimonies.

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Disciple New Believers in Türkiye

When a teenage girl told her family she’d become a Christian, they destroyed her Turkish Bible and forbade her from attending any church services. Refusing to renounce her beliefs, the girl marked a tree near her home with the sign of the cross and sits beneath it to read an English Bible, which her family cannot understand and therefore does not realize its value.

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Help Fuel Gospel Proclamation in Türkiye

Workers distributing aid at a refugee camp shared the gospel with a married couple in a tent where other relatives were present, so they were able to ask questions about the Bible and the Savior sent into the world. The couple and another relative accepted Christ, and five other relatives participate in their Bible studies and worship times.

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