Turkey Allows Churches

“Turkey’s bid to join the European Union has resulted in a relaxation of restrictions on Christian activity. The country is now allowing churches to register. Only 55 Protestant churches have been publicly identified as places of worship in Turkey’s major cities prior to this significant change.” From Agape Press, Link

A book I read recently, Why Europe Will Run the 21st Century, by Mark Leonard gives a good argument why the EU can encourage countries to become more democratic through withholding the benefits of joining the EU, as opposed to the model of military might to scare or force countries to comply to a standard.


Andrew Jones has been blogging since 1997. He is based in San Francisco with his two daughters but also travels the globe to find compelling stories of early stage entrepreneurs changing their world. Sometimes he talks in the third person. Sometimes he even talks to himself and has been heard uttering the name "Precious" :-)


  • SORRY, but I have to correct you on this one AJ. This is simply not accurate. I have been traveling to Turkey since 1989 and I have written two books on the church in Turkey, the most recent, “The Lost Land of the Bible.
    In actuality, since the EU opened the door last November for Turkey to enter, there has been even greater harassment and persecuation against Turkish Christians and churches.

  • “They have raised the flag of Christianity…”
    So, Christianity wasn’t already there?? I read story from Agape Press. I guess “news” like this annoys me more than a little. The definition of church in this article seems limited to American-planted Protestant churches. We do a grave disservice to the cause of Christ when we ignore two thousand years of Christianity on the Anatolian peninsula (i.e. in the form of the Orthodox community there) in favor of raw sectarianism.

  • I lived and worked in Turkey for 2 years in the 1990’s. There were many (as always…thanks God) moves of the H Sp outside of the state-sanctioned “churches”. Groups of people all over the place, not registered, not “foreigners” but home grown, and often in the poorest of areas.
    This registration of churches means little, if anything. There will always be, in every Country and outside of the state-sanctioned groups, the real LIFE forming in the people. Doesn’t matter if no news-feed ever knows.
    Let God be God.

  • I was born and raised in Turkey as a Catholic. There has never been any attempt by the government or the public to harrass me or my family in anyway. Turkey displays the perfect harmony of acceptance of religions. All us Christians and Jews in the area live very comfortable and happy. In fact I now own a company in Turkey and the US promoting biblical tours to the region. http://www.tourkey.org

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