Introduction / History The Persians are a people rich in history and culture, love and laughter, respect and honor. They enjoy a rich history of many empires of kings and kingdoms, poetry, art and advances in math and science. They were typically ruled by a king until the late 1970s, when their last king or shah was overthrown by Islamic revolutionists. Now Iran is an Islamic nation under the ayatollah, or religious leader. The revolution is still fresh in many of their memories and the current government has a heavy hand on them in many aspects of their life.
Where are they located? They are mostly in Iran, however many Persians fled the country during the revolution due to religious and ideological persecution. There are many living around the world, with big populations now in Germany, England and the United States.
What are their lives like? There is a large middle class now in most of Iran. Appearance is very important, so even lower class citizens can sometimes be seen wearing designer clothes. They are fiercely devoted to family and family get-togethers happen almost everyday. Because of the Islamic government, women are expected to cover their heads and wear a special dress in public. However, most are secular and only abide by the rules in public, since penalities are strict. Behind closed doors they enjoy music, dancing, games and get togethers. They love to laugh and have a great sense of humor.
What are their beliefs? They are traditionally Muslim by birth, but lately this has been more and more distant in their hearts. Although the majority profess to being Muslim and believing in the prophet Mohammed, it is speculated less than 10 percent of their population strictly follows the practice of Islam. Because of many disappointments with their current government and other hardships, their hearts are surprisingly open to other religions. They are not strict Muslims and very hungry to hear about the True God and His Love demonstrated through His Son.
What are their needs? It is illegal to evangelize in the country of Iran and conversion is punishable by death. However many are coming to faith in Christ through supernatural encounters with Jesus. Also there are many who are encountering Christ through satellite TV and Christian stations.
Prayer Points * Pray for the harvest of the Persian people, which is strong in the Lord's heart.
* Pray for a way for churches to meet legally and for religious freedom in their country.
* Pray for the believers in Iran, that they would be safe and grow in their relationship with Jesus.
* Pray the Lord would meet them in supernatural ways where missionaries cannot go.