Pastor Benham Irani
While Christians around the world continue to pray for imprisoned Iranian American Pastor Saeed Abedini, another Iranian pastor has been imprisoned for a longer period and is in urgent need of prayer.
We've told you previously in this blog and at CBN News about Pastor Benham Irani. Let's not forget him, he's gravely ill. Our friends at Present Truth Ministries are asking that Christians remember to pray for him and his family as well as Pastor Abidini.
Imprisoned for nearly two years, the 41-year-old Benham is still suffering from a bleeding intestinal ulcer. His family and friends worry he could die in prison because the Iranian authorities have yet to provide him with proper medical treatment.
Beham was arrested twice--in December 2006 and April 2010. In January 2011 he was tried and convicted of crimes against national security. He's considered a national security risk in Iran because he's leading Muslims to Christ; apparently the ayatollah's feel threatened.
When the first verdict against Benham was handed down in 2008, an appellate court recommended a death sentence against him because he was considered to be an apostate. He came to Christ in 1992 and began serving as a pastor 10 years later.
Prayer can make a difference. Just ask Pastor Yousef Nadarkhani. Prayers and pressure were instrumental in securing his release from prison last year. I'm confident Pastor Abedini will eventually be freed from prison as well.
While these two courageous Iranian Christians have gotten much media and prayer attention, let's not forget Pastor Benham. He still sits with 34 others--mostly drug dealers and convicted murderers--in a 40 x 40 foot cell. Pray for his healing and encouragement, pray he'll be reunited soon with his Armenian Christian wife Christine, 10-year-old daughter Rebecca, and 3-year-old son Adriel.
Watch this video of Pastor Benham's arrest.