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Iran continues persecution of Christians January 12, 2011

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, General Catholic, sadness, Society.
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At times, we are told that Islam is a religion of love and tolerance, especially tolerance for other religions.  In practice, that does not often seem to be the case, given the dhimmi status of non-Muslims and frequent persecutions.  Iran has recently ramped up its persecution of Christians, arresting 70 since Christmas:

Iran has arrested about 70 Christians since Christmas in a crackdown that demonstrates the limits of religious tolerance by Islamic leaders who often boast they provide room for other faiths.

The latest raids have targeted grass-roots Christian groups Iran describes as “hard-liners” who pose a threat to the Islamic state. Authorities increasingly view them with suspicions that range from trying to convert Muslims to being possible footholds for foreign influence.

Christian activists claim their Iranian brethren are being persecuted simply for worshipping outside officially sanctioned mainstream churches

I have heard reports that these ‘mainstream churches’ have been bullied, or co-opted, into discouraging any public witness of the Christian faith in Iran.  There are small, independent groups of Christians who do strive to live their faith in a fuller manner, and who are frequent targets of persecution.  From what I have heard, there is a hunger for the message of Christ’s redemptive love in some quarters in Iran, and there are a fair number of Muslims converting to Christianity in ancient nation.  As the article states, however, it can be very dangerous for Christians to proselytize in Iran – they can be arrested and thrown in horrid, fetid prison cells for years, even decades, with no legal recourse, if they are not shot outright.

And now, dear, sweet readers, I will avail of your charity again, for I know a woman in our DFW area, an Iranian woman, who regularly travels to Iran to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  She will be traveling to Iran again this summer, and she is in no small danger, as her family, ‘devout’ Muslims, are aware of her activities and do not approve.  In fact, they have informed her they will tell the authorities of her activities if she returns.  Nevertheless, she strongly feels the call of Jesus Christ to take up our cross and follow him, and so she is committed to returning and spreading the Truth Christ has revealed.  Would you, in your charity, pray for S.., this good, Christian woman?  She has managed, over long suffering and determined efforts, to convert most of her family stateside, but she needs many prayers for her safety, and her mission, in Iran.  I cannot give her name, for the Iranian authorities are known to scour the internet looking for such references.

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