Two Iranian Believers Released

via Mission News Network,

“Iran (MNN) — Two believers in Iran were just released from prison, but the persecution isn’t over. According to Voice of the Martyrs, Canada, one of the young men, a university student named Ehsan, hasn’t been allowed to go back to class and finish his management degree. It’s frustrating, but both Christians’ testimonies for the Gospel of Christ have encouraged others. The other believer, Noorollah, started a Bible study with inmates while in prison.”

Read the full story here.

Jailed Iranian Pastor Behnam Irani Unconscious

via persecution.org,

ICC Note:

“Irani has been severely beaten while in Karaj’s Ghezel Hesar Prison– allegedly for crimes against national security but really for holding house church services and leading people to Christ. He has been finding blood in his stool, Present Truth Ministries reported Monday. After the hospital visit, it was discovered that the pastor was suffering from a bleeding ulcer,” the Christian Post reports.

By Ethan Cole

“7/18/2012 Iran (Christian Post) – Iranian pastor Behnam Irani, who is serving a five-year sentence, has finally been taken to the military hospital after becoming so ill that he became unconscious within the last week.

Irani has been severely beaten while in Karaj’s Ghezel Hesar Prison– allegedly for crimes against national security but really for holding house church services and leading people to Christ. He has been finding blood in his stool, Present Truth Ministries reported Monday. After the hospital visit, it was discovered that the pastor was suffering from a bleeding ulcer.

‘We are thankful that he has been allowed to see a doctor and is being treated for his illness, but since the situation is so serious, we ask for your prayers for his healing,’ wrote Present Truth Ministries in the update.

In February, popular American pastor Rick Warren had tweeted a message urging his followers to pray for Irani: ‘Pray for our dear pastor Behnam Irani who’s been severely beaten in prison in Iran for preaching Jesus.’

The 41-year-old pastor from Karaj, Iran, became a follower of Jesus Christ in 1992, and a pastor ten years later. He has been arrested twice in connection to his house church activities, but has been charged with crimes against national security. He began serving his five-year sentence in May 2011. The father of two is regularly beaten in prison by inmates and guards and his health is failing, including starting to lose his eyesight, difficulty with walking, and now a bleeding ulcer. His family worries that he may die in prison in the next few months if his situation doesn’t improve.”

Read the entire story here.

Pastor’s Six-Year Sentence Upheld In Iran

via Elam Ministries and Voice of the Martyrs weekly prayer update,

“Iran’s Revolutionary Court recently upheld Pastor Farshid Fathi’s six-year sentence for ‘political offenses,’ forcing him to complete a prison term that began more than 18 months ago. Farshid was arrested in December 2010 for his Christian work, but authorities continue to cast his activities as political offenses. He was convicted for allegedly being the chief agent of foreign organization in Iran and for administering funds for foreign organizations, a charge often used to arrest and convict Christians. Farshid has become much beloved among inmates in Tehran’s Evin prison, according to Elam Ministries. Farshid’s trial had been repeatedly postponed by judicial authorities until earlier this year. Farshid’s wife, Leila, relinquished the deed to their home to pay his bail, but even so, he was never released. Farshid and Leila have two children. Pray for Farshid’s endurance as he continues to bring light to those in Evin prison during the remainder of his sentence.”

Vacation Bible School

Berean Church is offering Vacation Bible School for children ages 4 years through sixth grade from July 16-20.  VBS begins promptly at 8:45AM and ends at noon.  Refreshments are provided.  Please contact the church office at 972-438-1440, 972-986-8792 for more information or you may contact us here.

Escuela Bíblica de vacaciones es demasiado para usted!

New Court Date For Youcef Nadarkhani

via Fox News,

“A new court date has been set for Youcef Nadarkhani, the Iranian pastor on death row who has been imprisoned for nearly 1,000 days, but his supporters remain in the dark about what it could mean for his ultimate fate, FoxNews.com has learned.

Nadarkhani, 35, is scheduled to appear in court on Sept. 8, according to Jordan Sekulow, executive Director of the American Center for Law and Justice, which has been closely monitoring the case.

‘We do not know the purpose of the appearance or the likelihood of new charges,’ Sekulow told FoxNews.com. ‘We want to dispel any rumors that his current apostasy charge, for which he was sentenced to death, has been removed. Until the regime unconditionally exonerates and releases Pastor Youcef, his apostasy charge stands.’

The length of Nadarkhani’s imprisonment will reach 1,000 days on Sunday, said Sekulow, who remains hopeful that growing international attention will lead to his unconditional release.

‘Our global support to free Pastor Youcef continues to grow,’ he said. ‘Our Tweet for Youcef campaign now reaches more than 2.5 million people a day in more than 220 counties and territories.’

Nadarkhani, a pastor in a network of house churches, has been jailed since being arrested on Oct. 13, 2009, after he went to his son’s school to complain about them starting mandatory Koran classes. He was then charged with apostasy from Islam. He was found guilty by the Iranian Supreme Court and sentenced to death in 2010 and has been imprisoned ever since.”

Read the entire article here.