Diego was born and raised in Colombia in a home where the Gospel was first introduced in the late 60s. His father, Jaime, came to Christ as a result of the ministry of International Ministries’ missionary, Don Whiteside. Jaime would go on to found the mission’s first church in Medellin. Over the years, Diego and his family have been very active in the Itagui church under his father’s supervision, working with children and youth and doing outreach events using music as the medium. After finishing his secondary education he enrolled in Seminary to prepare for pastoral ministry. During his Bible College days (1986-1989), Diego became a significant leader, developing new ministries in the church, and growing in his skills as a teacher and preacher.
In 1988, Diego, along with Phil Webb and other missionaries, started Bible studies with a vision to plant a new church among the middle class of Medellin. This resulted in the planting of "Comunidad Cristiana El Redil" (Sheepfold Christian Community).
As a vital part of the leadership team, Diego blossomed. From 1992-1997 he served as senior pastor of this flourishing congregation of 350.
The vision of El Redil is to be servants in the Kingdom of God and start new churches in Medellin. This process started with the founding of the new church in El Poblado under the pastoral leadership of Phil Webb. Since then other satellite congregations have sprung up. Diego closely works with new leaders in what is called the "Servants’ School".
The Cardonas came to Canada in 1997 where Diego studied at Northwest Baptist Theological College (A.C.T.S.) earning his Master of Ministries degree. In 1998, they were appointed as Associate missionaries with International Ministries and returned to Medellin in September 1999.
The Cardonas have been key in the establishment of several church plants in the greater Medellin area. Diego served as the President of the Association of churches in Colombia, and is currently launching out into radio and writing along with church planting. Both Claudia and Diego have taken the lead in facilitating the El Redil churches’ ministry to the poor and disadvantaged in Medellin.
Diego and Claudia's passion for Christ and love for the lost have resulted in countless numbers of Colombians coming to faith in Christ.