*** DEBUG END ***

Faith and Church in Iran

10 October 2014


From the Revd Dr Guli Francis-Dehqani

Sir, - As a fellow Christian from Iran, I warmly welcome the new translation of the Bible into Persian (News, 3 October). In bearing the name "the Michaelian translation", it witnesses to the faithful ministry of one who gave his life for the Christian faith in Iran.

Allow me to correct, however, the reported quotation from Dr Yagnasar, whom I, from the Anglican community in Iran, hold in high regard. In quoting Tertullian, he is right to point to the important witness of the blood of the martyrs, but is mistaken in identifying this as "the seed of the gospel". The reference in Apologeticus, chapter 50, is commonly translated: "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church."

The distinction is important in the context of Christianity in Iran. We hear much about interest in the gospel from Persians today, but those church members (Anglican and others) who have died and suffered are part of a small community of the faithful remnant. All expression of Christian faith is difficult in Iran, but interest in the message of the gospel is easier than identification with a community of fellow believers.

The prayers of many are that the blood of the martyrs will strengthen expression of the gospel message through Christian witness in faithful church communities.

Commissary of the Bishop in Iran
Bouverie Court, 6 The Lakes
Bedford Road
Northampton NN4 7YD

Letters to the editor

Letters for publication should be sent to letters@churchtimes.co.uk.

Letters should be exclusive to the Church Times, and include a full postal address. Your name and address will appear alongside your letter.

Train-a-Priest Fund 2022 Appeal

Please consider a donation to TAP Africa this year. Every penny you can give goes to ordinands in Africa who face financial difficulty, to support them as they complete their training. 

Donate online

Read more about this year's appeal

Forthcoming Events

24 May 2022
Disability and Church: Intersectionality
A joint webinar from HeartEdge and Church Times.

2 July 2022
Bringing Down the Mighty: Church, Theology and Structural Injustice
With Anthony Reddie, Azariah France-Williams, Mariama Ifode-Blease, Luke Larner, Will Moore, Stewart Rapley and Victoria Turner.

More events

Welcome to the Church Times

​To explore the Church Times website fully, please sign in or subscribe.

Non-subscribers can read four articles for free each month. (You will need to register.)