In September 2022, Rev. Carlos J. Perez was unanimously elected by the First Christian Church of DeLand congregation as their senior ministry and pastor. While celebrating the church's 140th founding anniversary in March, it formally welcomed Rev. Carlos J. Perez as its new pastor.

First Christian Church of DeLand's New Pastor

A report from The West Volusia Beacon after the installation ceremony of Reverend Carlos J. Perez as the new pastor of the First Christian Church of DeLand, the Disciple Women organized a reception in the fellowship hall to celebrate the occasion. Because of Perez's enthusiastic and compassionate approach to ministering, his presence has dramatically enriched the congregation. Perez has been serving as the church's pastor since Nov. 2017, and on Saturday, Feb. 25, he was officially appointed in the church's sanctuary during an elegant ceremony.

Following the death of Pastor Elizabeth Carrasquillo in Dec. 2021, the church embarked on an exhaustive search process to find a replacement for her. In September, all congregation members voted to appoint Perez as senior minister and pastor. Perez is a product of Bayamón, Puerto Rico, and is 34 years old. His upbringing was profoundly impacted by his parents' strong commitment to the Disciples of Christ Church, which he regularly attended throughout childhood.

Perez received a Bachelor of Arts degree in psychology from the University of Puerto Rico, where he studied for four years. A graduate of Carlos Albizu University, he also holds a Master of Science degree in industrial/organizational psychology. Vanessa Perez, M.D., is his 17-year wife, an emergency pediatrician. They have three children named Valeria, Marcos, and Eduardo. His wife finished her medical residency, and Carlos Perez worked as a human resources specialist in Michigan after moving from Puerto Rico in 2010.

After three years in Michigan, the couple moved to Orlando and joined Arise Christian Church, serving in several ministries. Rev. Samuel Robles Jr. inspired Pastor Perez to enter the ministry. Asbury Theological Seminary awarded him a Master of Divinity in 2020. Moreover, in January 2022, with the help of Iglesia Cristiana de Deltona, Perez received his ordination as a minister. He also serves as a counsellor for AdventHealth Orlando.

According to United States Churches, Iglesia Cristiana de Deltona is a congregation that serves people of all ages and generations to assist people in discovering and following God. On the other hand, AdventHealth is an acute care medical facility that serves not only as a community hospital for the Greater Orlando area but also as a significant tertiary referral hospital for Central Florida, the majority of the Southeast, the Caribbean, and Latin America. It has a total capacity of 2,247 beds.

Also Read: Hillsong Church Welcomes New Global Senior Pastors

First Christian Church and DeLand Community

An article from First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of DeLand stated that in the same year that the community of DeLand, Florida, was incorporated as a municipality, the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in DeLand, Florida, was established on Mar. 3, 1883. The first structure ever constructed on the site sits at the intersection of North Woodland Boulevard and Wisconsin Avenue, featuring a raised platform that served as a convenient access point for boarding and disembarking horse-drawn carriages. This early church did an excellent job of serving the newly established downtown community, notably Stetson University, which was established in the same year as this church by John B. Stetson and Henry A. DeLand, the person after whom the town was named.

Related Article: Rev. Adam Arends Appointed as New Pastor at St. Timothy Lutheran Church