Iran (MNN) — A great spiritual hunger in Iran has caused many to turn away from traditional Islam, resulting in an ever-increasing number of conversions. Words of Hope President Lee DeYoung says that conversion is viewed as a serious offense in Iran, and the government continues to hunt those suspected of turning to Christianity.
"We continue to hear reports of government inquiries," DeYoung says, "and people being called in for questioning about alleged Christian activities."
Many believers have taken to exercising their faith "underground" to avoid officials' prying eyes.
"It shows that the government of Iran is still very vigilant and concerned."
DeYoung adds that in Iran, conversion could result in punishment by death. Many Iranians are tired of the disillusionment associated with Islam and Iran's government. The disillusionment has resulted in a great spiritual hunger in Iran. As the hunger grows, so does the number of converts to Christianity; God's family is growing despite continued persecution.
"The work of God in Iran testifies to the power of the Gospel," said Victor Atallah, founder of the Middle East Reformed Fellowship (MERF).
MERF partners with Words of Hope in Iran to broadcast Christian programming into Iran. Every night, Iranians tune in to God's Word broadcast in Farsi, their native tongue. Believers are also encouraged through the Internet and Biblical training offered by WOH. DeYoung urges sustained prayer for believers in Iran as governmental pressure continues.
"People there are courageous," DeYoung said. "They need wisdom, and they need God's protection so that they can continue to minister in Jesus' name both on the radio and in other ways."
If you'd like to become involved in supporting Words of Hope's work in Iran, click here to make a donation.