Religious leaders in the Islamic Republic are urging their government to increase pressure on Christians in the face of church growth. Despite difficulties, Christianity continues to expand in Iran, to the point of becoming a major concern for Islamic leaders. According to Mohabat News, an agency specialised in the situation of Christians in Iran, the rate of growth in the country has been “exponential” in the last two decades. Even some main Islamic leaders, such as Ayatollah Alavi Boroujerdi, have pointed to “accurate reports indicating that young people are becoming Christians in Qom and attending churches in houses.”
Another Ayatollah, Makarem Shirazi, has also been “alarmed at the number of young Iranians becoming Christians,” and blames “foreign influence” on conversions. Wahid Khorasani, another Islamic leader, has criticised government officials “for negligence in not preparing strategies to counter the spread of Christianity.” Mohabat News points out “the high rate of conversion of Iranian youth to Christianity comes despite rigorous Islamic indoctrination of young people in families and the education system. The Islamic government of Iran devotes massive budgets supporting Islamic organisations promoting Islam among young people. Irrespective of these efforts, young Iranians seem increasingly distant from Islam, a matter of great concern to the Iranian Islamic government.”
In this situation, the authorities have begun to persecute the Christians more severely. The New York-based Centre for Human Rights in Iran reported in July that Iranian authorities are increasingly imprisoning Christians who have converted in the country. Despite this strategy of repression and persecution, the growth of Christianity has not stopped. “Church leaders believe millions can be added in the coming years – such is the spiritual hunger that exists and disillusionment with the Islamic regime,” Elam ministries said earlier this year. “Because Iran is a strategic nation, the growing church in Iran will affect Muslim nations throughout the Islamic world,” the
Source: Mohabat News; Elam Ministries; Protestante Digital
Bible Study: Psalm 2:2-8
DECEMBER PRAISE God so many young Iranians are turning to Christ in the face of disillusionment with Islam as it is forced upon them.
PRAY this hunger will grow.