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Pastor Youcef Nardarkhani
Photo: Present Truth Ministries

Having served three years in prison, Iranian pastor Youcef Nadarkhani was released after posting bail in September of 2012, the result of a court appearance in which he was acquitted of a previous charge of apostasy although still considered guilty of evangelizing Muslims. However, the director of Lakan Prison in Rasht recently ordered his return to prison claiming that the release came about prematurely and without the proper completion of necessary paperwork.

The recent order was a huge disappointment for Pastor Youcef, his wife and their two sons, who were eagerly looking forward to spending Christmas together as a family after almost three years of separation. They have all been through a great deal of emotional turmoil throughout the duration of his imprisonment, especially considering that this time last year, he was facing execution for "apostasy."

Let us join together in prayer as members of God's family on behalf of our Christian brother who is known for his quiet courage, integrity and perseverance in the midst of severe persecution. While pleading his case before the Lord, please ask that Brother Youcef be released without further delay and that God's continued presence and protection be upon him and his family. In addition, remember to uphold his defending lawyer, Mohammed Ali Dadkhah, who was incarcerated in September 2012 for advocating this case and other human rights cases. May God not only minister strength, healing and freedom to Mohammed in his own time of need, but that he will also be honoured for representing justice and righteousness in the courts.

Current Ministry Fund

By funding television broadcasts, VOMC is making it possible for a vast audience of viewers to be reached throughout Iran with the "Good News" of Jesus' love via satellite. VOMC is also working with partners to provide the Theology of Persecution course in Farsi to train Iranian believers to provide a proper theological perspective and understanding of persecution from a Biblical point of view.

Project Fund: Underground Church

Country Information


85,888,910 (July 2021 est.)

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

Religion (%)
Islam (99.4), other, including Christian (0.3), Unspecified (0.3)

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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Iran News

  • Prisoner Located and Since Released on Bail
    Ayoub Poor-Rezazade - Photo: Middle East Concern
    Ayoub Poor-Rezazade
    Photo: Middle East Concern

    In the Persecution & Prayer Alert that VOMC published on September 30th, it was reported that three Christians had been arrested while attending a prayer meeting in Rasht, Iran, on September 5th. The report had mentioned that two of the believers were r

  • Arrests of Christian Converts During Prayer Meeting
    Morteza Mashhoudkari, Ahmad Sarparast, Ayoub Poor-Rezazade - Photo: Middle East Concern www.meconcern.org
    Morteza, Ahmad and Ayoub
    Photo: Middle East Concern

    Three Christian converts were arrested while attending a prayer meeting in the Iranian coastal city of Rasht on September 5th. Intelligence agents raided the meeting and took Morteza Mashhoudkari, Ayoub Poor-Rezazade and Ahmad Sarparast for interro

  • Proposed Law Leads to Concerns
    Underground house church - Photo: VOM USA
    Pray for creative solutions as Iranian believers spread the Gospel.
    Photo: VOM USA

    Finding encouragement in the Christian faith can be especially difficult in a country like Iran, where tight government controls prevent followers of Christ from meeting together. In recent years, modern technology cr

  • Presidential Election Brings Concerns
    Ebrahim Raisi
    President Ebrahim Raisi
    Photo: Mehr News Agency (cc)

    The recent election of Ebrahim Raisi as president of Iran has led to concerns for those monitoring religious freedom in the country. The election has been discredited by many since reformers or moderates were banned from running for the position