Bachelor’s of Theology, in progress.
Vladimir was born on December 30, 1976 to a Jehovah’s Witness mother and an atheist father with militaristic left wing tendencies. In 1981 his father immigrated to the United States leaving him and his brother with their mother who raised them to be Jehovah’s Witnesses. His father returned to El Salvador in 1985 which caused his mother to be expelled from the Jehovah’s Witness congregation because they were not married. Although his father was physically present there was no father-son bond between them. Vladimir was also deeply hurt by the expulsion of his mother from the congregation he had grown up in.
His father tried to give both boys the best education he possibly could. They were enrolled in one of the best schools in El Salvador at that time, a Catholic Jesuit School with a very dogmatic ideology. Both boys abandoned their Jehovah’s Witness practices and adopted the Jesuit ideology. Not long thereafter his father abandoned the family, again.
When Vladimir was 13, and in ninth grade, a combination of circumstances, (the rejection he experienced from the Jehovah’s Witnesses, the new found liberty in his school’s ideology, and the abandonment by his father) sent him into a phase of rebellion. He was also additionally hurt by the total rejection that came from his mother’s side of the family. They were Christians and they fought a lot with his mother for being a Jehovah’s Witness. This phase of his life was marked by constant conflict and even anger against Christians. Vladimir even remembers throwing rocks at a group of believers who had come to his neighborhood to share the gospel.
Vladimir graduated from High School in 1993. His life at that time was characterized by rebellion, alcohol, and bad decisions. Nevertheless, God’s goodness and mercy was with him. He was offered a scholarship to attend college, which he accepted and thus was able to study Biomedical Engineering with a Post Graduate Degree in Business Administration; he graduated with those degrees in 2001.
In 1995 Vladimir and his mother had an argument that was so bad it resulted in him leaving home and moving in with a friend shortly thereafter in 1996. God used this new family to bring him closer and closer to HIM. One by one, his new family members came to Christ, the daughter, the mother, and the father. They all began attending a Baptist Church. Vladimir came to Christ 5 months later on June 16, 1996 at the age of 20. Right away he began discipleship. Not long later, one of his college friends invited Vladimir to the Vida Nueva youth group. He immediately felt at home and soon transferred his membership to Iglesia Bautista Vida Nueva. Then, during a mission trip to Honduras, one of the men from the church in Honduras talked with him and encouraged him to return home and ask his mother for forgiveness. He obediently did just that, and to his surprise, his mother had already made Jesus Christ the Lord of her life.
Since 2001 Vladimir worked in private hospitals, although he has always felt the desire to serve the Lord full time. His call to ministry was a long process in which God, in His infinite wisdom, put Vladimir to work full time until He could bring the perfect helpmeet into his life. This is where Candace enters the scene…..
Candace Carr was born on April 29, 1981. Since childhood she felt God’s call upon her life to serve Him full time. In May of 2004, at the age of 23, she moved to El Salvador, as a recent college graduate to serve in the Vida Nueva youth ministry discipling young ladies. She knew very little Spanish but had a HUGE heart.
This is where Candace and Vladimir met and initiated a strong friendship. In 2008 they entered into a formal relationship and on January 11, 2010 they were married.
The Lord has blessed their marriage with two sons, James Lucas born on April 28, 2011 and Jacob Andres born on October 29, 2012, and two daughters, Jordyn Elizabeth born on May 2, 2014 and Hannah Joy born in late December 2015. Every day, Vladimir, as a father and husband, seeks to demonstrate God’s love to his family and guide them to follow Christ.
Ministerially, Vladi pastored the youth group in Lourdes for 5 years (2007-2011). In 2012 he took a step of faith, quit his secular job, and has dedicated himself to full time ministry ever since. Since October 2013 he has been the pastor of the 15-18 year old youth group at Vida Nueva and he and Candace are the national coordinators for the Awana ministry. In January 2015 Vladimir accepted the full time position of Youth Ministries Director of Vida Nueva San Salvador. He now also pastors the College Age Youth.
A personal message from Vladimir:
Psalms 138:8 The LORD will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O LORD, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.” “I believe that the Lord has a purpose and that He looks to fulfill that purpose through the lives of believers, through the local Church, through His Word, and through ministries. He desires that you live for that which you were saved to do. I believe that God saved me with a purpose, and He wants to accomplish it far beyond anything I could ever imagine.