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01/27/2023 (International Christian Concern) – Christians continue to face increased pressure and persecution as the Iranian authorities tighten their grip on the nation in response to nationwide protests since September 2022 that have shaken the Islamic Republic of Iran’s entire social and political system. Christian converts from Islam in particular face persecution, including imprisonment of house church leaders and denial of their basic rights as citizens.

Since the 1979 Islamic Revolution that brought the current Iranian government to power, hundreds of thousands, some estimates say up to a million, Iranians have converted to Christianity. This rapidly growing minority of Christian converts have no formal recognition under Iranian law, and as such receive no basic protection. They are considered as direct enemies of the Iranian state, subject to direct violence and arrest of their leaders and house church members, and under the current structure of law, they are treated as apostates and thus have absolutely no freedom of belief.

Despite these persecutions, the number of converts in Iran continue to grow. The care and charity demonstrated by Iranian house churches during the increased public and economic challenges encountered during COVID-19 further strengthened the witness of Christians across the nation. Also, the testimonies of Christian converts who have refused to renounce their new faith identity have impacted have both challenged and encouraged many more to consider following Christ.

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