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Mojtaba Hosseini, Mohammad-Reza Partoei
(Kourosh), Vahid Hakkani, Homayoun
Shokouhi and his wife, Fariba Nazemian
Photo: Mohabat News

There has been an alarming upsurge in the harassment of Christians in Iran, with reports indicating an increase in arrests during recent weeks. Three hundred Christians have reportedly been arbitrarily arrested and imprisoned in the country since 2010.

Seven Christians were detained during a prayer meeting when security services raided a house in the city of Shiraz in Fars Province. At last report, Mohammad (Vahid) Roghangir, Suroush Saraie, Roxana Forughi, Eskandar Rezaie, Bijan Haghighi, Mehdi Ameruni, and Shahin Lahooti were being held in a detention centre operated by the Intelligence Ministry.

Five other Christians, who were detained in Adel-Abad prison eight months ago following a raid on a house church in Shiraz, faced trial on October 15. Mojtaba Hosseini, Mohammad-Reza Partoei (Kourosh), Vahid Hakkani, Homayoun Shokouhi and his wife, Fariba Nazemian, were charged with creating illegal groups, participating in a house church service, propagation against the Islamic regime, and defaming Islamic holy figures through Christian evangelizing.

Meanwhile, a well-known Christian artist in Iran has been temporarily released from prison and now awaits trial. Vahid Zarday, a Christian convert and awarded music composer, was arrested during a gathering in a house church with his wife and other Christians. He was transferred to Vakil-Abad prison immediately after his arrest -- a prison known for overcrowding, poor hygiene, prisoner humiliation, and group executions.

Please pray that those arrested and facing trial will remember the blessing they will receive for persevering (Hebrews 10:36). Please pray for the release of those imprisoned. Pray that, whether imprisoned or free, they and other believers in Iran will seek to live boldly for Christ and share the Good News with others.

For more on Iran's persecuted Church, go to the Iran Country Report.

Current Ministry Fund

By funding television broadcasts, VOMC is making it possible for a vast audience of viewers throughout Iran to be reached via satellite with the "Good News" of Jesus' tremendous love for them. VOMC is also working with ministry partners to provide the Theology of Persecution course in the Farsi language so Iranian believers can be taught an accurate theological perspective and, therefore, gain a better understanding of persecution from a Biblical point of view.

Project Fund: Underground Church

Country Information

Designation
Persecuted

Population
85,888,910 (July 2021 est.)

Ethnicity
Persian, Azeri, Kurd, Lur, Baloch, Arab, Turkmen and Turkic tribes

Religion (%)
Islam (99.6), other, including Christian (0.3), Unspecified (0.2)

Leader
President Ebrahim Raisi (2021)

Government type
Theocratic republic

Legal system
Religious legal system based on secular and Islamic law

Source: CIA World Factbook

Pray for Iran

As the Gospel message goes forth over the airwaves, may the growth of the church continue to multiply despite persecution. Pray that the Iranian government will be open to change, allowing full rights and protection for its non-Muslim citizens as well. In the meantime, may those who are forced to flee the country find safe refuge and help so they can live in peace and worship the Lord with freedom.

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