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My name is Naghmeh Abedini and I am writing to invite you to participate in a national day of prayer for my husband, Saeed Abedini, who is currently being held in a dangerous Iranian prison because of his Christian faith. Remember His Chains day of prayer and solidarity for Saeed will take place on the 13th anniversary of Saeed’s salvation and I hope to gather in prayer with hundreds of thousands of Christians around the world united in prayer for Saeed on that day.
When: May 19, 2013.
The Vision to Share: What if thousands of church congregations took steps to “remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison” (Hebrews 13:3) by making a focused, unified effort to support Saeed and remember other persecuted Christians?
How you can participate:
· Read the paragraph below on May 19, 2013, telling Pastor Saeed’s story:
In July of 2012, a Christian pastor named Saeed Abedini left the United States for what was supposed to be several weeks as he continued his efforts to establish an orphanage in Rasht, Iran. As he was about to return home, he was pulled off of a bus by the Iranian Revolutionary Guard and placed under house arrest. He remained under house arrest until September, when he was taken without warning to one of Iran’s most notorious prisons, where he has now been imprisoned for 236 days. He has broken no law, but has been charged for peacefully gathering with other Christians, a crime for which he has been sentenced to eight years in prison. For the last eight months, he has suffered beatings, threats, and torturous interrogations as Iranian authorities try to get him to renounce his faith in Jesus Christ. Pastor Saeed has stated in a letter from prison that they will never get this from him, and has described the joy that he has experienced as God gives him strength even through these intense sufferings. His wife, Naghmeh, remains in the United States with their two children and has invited churches around the nation to take a united stand in prayer and to call on God for his release.
· Share a 3-minute narration of Saeed’s inspiring and encouraging letter from prison with your congregations. A link to the video is provided here.
· Pray for Pastor Saeed and his family. Pastor Saeed’s wife, Naghmeh, has asked that we pray for the following three things in particular:
1. Saeed's health. That the Lord would heal him from the internal bleeding and protect him from those who seek his life.
2. That Saeed would continue to shine the light of Jesus in prison. Ephesians 6:18-20 : “praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—and for me, that utterance may be given to me, that I may open my mouth boldly to make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”
3. Prayer for our family. The Lord would give us continued peace and Grace as we trust Him with what the future holds.
4. Prayer that the Lord would use this to bring salvation to many, including the Muslims in the middle east.
· Promote #savesaeed and @savesaeed.org using social media. When Pastor Saeed found out about #savesaeed, he was deeply encouraged by the Church’s support. At www.savesaeed.org, please add your voices to the hundreds of thousands of people who have already signed the petition calling for his release.
· Spread the news of Saeed’s plight by having church members share his story with three friends or family members.
Will you and your affiliated congregations join us in a unified effort to support Saeed on May 19th? In order to effect the most widespread participation possible, please also consider inviting at least 3 other pastors of different congregations to join you in this effort.
When Paul was a prisoner for the gospel, he asked the church to “remember his chains” (Colossians 4:18). As a church body, let’s do the same for Saeed, whose unwavering devotion to the gospel of Christ has resulted in his bearing those same chains. We must pray for Saeed and the millions of Christians who are persecuted for the gospel all around the world.
To our faithful God be the glory,