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An Amazing Visit

The Revd. Bassi Mirzania opens our hearts to the power of prayer for persecuted Iranian Christians.

Revd Bassi Mirzania

An amazing person recently visited our church – a small, black-eyed woman with the power of dynamite, the daughter of a deeply religious Sufi father with compassion as wide as the Iranian desert; and a Qashqai (tribal) no-nonsense mother whose valued hunting, polo playing, tent-dwelling and getting her own way.

The visitor has a Masters in Social Responsibility, the heritage of an Iranian royal title, work experiences that included the palace of the Queen of Iran and the jungles of Brent, the only Christian convert in her family, now an ordained priest, several occasions of losing all her possessions, and persecution. There you have The Revd Bassi Mirzania, Anglican Chaplain to the Persian Community in the UK, working from the Guildford Diocese.

Bassi came to speak to us about the persecuted Christians in Iran. What we were NOT prepared for was the power of her message. We were stunned by the stories of her own arrest and miraculous escape to England. But it was not just her own story that kept us spellbound, but those of countless other Christians, now imprisoned or disappeared, their courage and their desperate need for our prayers. Latest news from Iran reported additional attacks on Christian homes, confiscation of goods, arrests, beatings both of Christians and their neighbours occurring on 24th and 31st December, 2013. Bassi’s greatest wish is that the world church is “mindful of the persecuted, and the pain of the converts world-wide, those living in minority at home or in exile"

Bassi talking with our Revd Roni Goodman

Conversations around her many photos (including a woman being stoned to death) gave a sense of reality to her stories.

Comments from listeners included:

  • "It really opened my eyes"
  • "Hugely inspiring"
  • "Expands my understanding of all Christians under persecution"
  • "I was absolutely appalled at what I heard"
  • "I knew bad things were happening but I really didn’t know the depth of it"
  • "It has strengthened my prayer life"

John and Judy provided overnight accommodation – highly commended, she said, because she "didn’t have to sleep with a cobra”. Now there’s a tale we have yet to hear.

These prayer requests from Christians in Iran could be the same for any group of persecuted Christians. Pray that:

  • Those detained will know the presence, peace and provision of Jesus, and be released soon
  • They will remain strong in the faith and clear in their witness, have access to Scriptures and be able to communicate with their families
  • Family members will know the comfort, peace and presence of Jesus
  • Church leaders will know the Spirit's wisdom concerning all aspects of public worship
  • All officials involved will love mercy, act justly, learn about Jesus and choose to follow Him

Date: January 2014

Source: Judith Robinson

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