Iranian Christians request prayer for four Christian converts and their families after the men presented themselves at Evin Prison on 2 June to begin serving five-year sentences.
Hossein Kadivar, Khalil Dehghanpour, Kamal Naamanian and Mohammed Vafadar obeyed a summons issued on 28 May. They had been released on bail of about $13,000 each last July.
They were among nine Christian converts belonging to the “Church of Iran” denomination who were arrested over a four-week period at the beginning of 2019, accused of endangering state security and promoting Zionism. Following a disagreement with the judge over the choice of a defence lawyer, the other five men were immediately transferred to Evin prison, as they were unable to meet extortionate bail demands of about $130,000 each.
In October 2019 all nine were convicted of “acting against national security” and each sentenced to five years’ imprisonment. The sentences were upheld on appeal in February 2020.
Of the four men who presented themselves at Evin Prison earlier this week, three are married with families, while Mohammad is single.
Friends of the Christian converts request prayer that:
- God will comfort the families of all Christians in prison, providing for their needs and caring for the children in particular
- God will grant his peace to those who recently started serving their prison sentences and encourage them greatly
- Iran will respect the freedom of its citizens to follow the faith of their own choosing and stop criminalising the activities of Christian converts as though they are acting against national security