Behnam Irani, is a pastor from Karaj, Iran, convicted of crimes against national security in January 2011 and sentenced to one year in prison.
Officers from the Ministry of Intelligence and National Security (MOIS) raided Irani’s house church on April 14, 2010, and assaulted him before taking him into custody. Although he was released on bail two months after his arrest, he later received the one-year prison sentence.
When Irani voluntarily began serving his sentence in May 2011, he was prepared to spend one year in prison. But he received a letter in October stating that he must now serve five years from his previous sentence.
Irani was first arrested in December 2006 and tried for crimes against national security. He was released in January 2007 but was soon re-arrested, tried and sentenced to five years in prison. Irani was never called to serve the sentence that is now being held against him.
For the first few months of his sentence, Behnam Irani was held in solitary confinement in a very small cell. Afterward, he was moved to another small cell with other prisoners. The room was so full, the prisoners were not able to lie down to sleep, so they had to sit all day and night. The room also got very hot. Prison authorities had beaten him regularly. All his hair has turned white.
Irani became a pastor in 2002, 10 years after becoming a Christian.
Now imprisoned for 18 months, Pastor Behnam Irani needs our encouragement and our prayers. Though his body is sick, (is still facing intestinal bleeding. His family is very concerned because his brother died from intestinal cancer.) his faith remains strong and is full of the joy of the Lord. He is definitely not weak and discouraged there in prison. Pray for his healing and doors will be opened for the surgery that is needed. Pray that God would strengthen and encourage his faith. And pray for Pastor Irani’s wife and family as they are forced to endure hardships while living without him.
INSTRUCTIONS BELOW MUST BE FOLLOWED TO PROTECT PASTOR IRANI
When writing your letters, please do not state anything negative about the Iranian government. Do not mention any foreign organization, or church that is supporting the efforts to free Christian prisoners. While it is safe for prisoners to receive encouraging letters, naming an organization or church, or criticizing the Iranian government could potentially place Pastor Irani in more harm. Please do not do anything to make matters any worse for him. Including Bible verses in your letter is encouraged.
Send your letters to:
Thank you for your love and concern for our persecuted family in Christ!