Middle East (MNN) — As areas of the Middle East become more and more volatile, believers get more and more creative about how they spread the Gospel. Take SAT-7’s Panayiotis Keenan, for example.
“With all the problems that Iran is facing with the regime and with the uprising, it’s getting difficult for anyone to send people on the ground to evangelize, so the safest way for them and for us is broadcasting television.”
To maximize the impact of their broadcast, SAT-7 is using a new tool.
“Yahsat is a satellite that covers the whole of Iran, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan,” Keenan says. “This has caused our audience to grow inside Iran by 150 percent and Afghanistan by 300 percent.”
On a daily basis, SAT-7 is finding new viewers who want to learn about Jesus. But SAT-7 isn’t just focused on getting people in the door. Two new discipleship series are hitting the air soon to cultivate the seeds of the Gospel that have already been planted.
One of SAT-7’s target groups is the young people that make up 60 percent of Iran’s population. “If you plant a seed in a child, it is easier for it to grow faster than in an older person,” Keenan explains.
Just ask Daniel, an 11-year-old who called into the program three weeks ago. Keenan says kids call in all the time, but this one was different.
“Usually children ask us to pray for them or sing a worship song with them, but Daniel wanted to pray for us,” Keenan says. “His prayer had so much spirituality and authority that the presenter was in tears. He couldn’t continue the program, and we had to go to commercial break.”
But there are still some obstacles SAT-7 has yet to overcome.
“God is opening doors in Iran, but also in Afghanistan. There is something going on in Afghanistan, and we should be prepared and ready to feed these people because they are hungry.”
Although Afghans understand a certain dialect of Farsi, the primary language local programming can be found in, not every region can overcome the language barrier. What’s more, it can be hard to find presenters who can speak different languages who are willing to stand in front of a camera.