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I will never deny Christ, says Iranian pastor

08 March 2013

AN IRANIAN Christian pastor, Saeed Abedinigalangashi, wrote from prison last month that he had been subjected to "sometimes unbearable" treatment, but was determined never to "deny Christ".

Mr Abedinigalangashi, who is also known as Mr Abedini, was sentenced to eight years in prison in January for "actions against the security of Iran" (News, 8 February). His lawyer said that he had planted house churches.

In the letter, dated 18 February, Mr Abedini, who has dual Iranian-American nationality, said that he had been subject to "death threats", and "actions committed to humiliate me", but went on: "I see all of these difficulties as golden opportunities and great doors to serve. . .

"They are trying to put me under such horrific pressures (that are sometimes unbearable) so that they can show me that my faith is empty and not real.

"And after all of these pressures, after all of the nails that they have pressed against my hands and feet, they are only waiting for one thing: for me to deny Christ. But they will never get this from me."

In another letter, dated 10 January, Mr Abedini wrote: "The Word of God says that when we are persecuted for our faith, we are to count it all joy. When I think that all of these trials and persecutions are being recorded in heaven for me, my heart is filled with complete joy."

A petition has been launched by the American Center for Law and Justice. It calls on President Obama, the United States Congress, and the Secretary of State, John Kerry, to "take all available diplomatic and legislative action to pressure Iran to respect religious freedom and release Pastor Saeed".

Further information is available at: aclj.org/iran/save-american-pastor-iranian-abuse-imprisonment

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