Reshaping the Church

Heart4Iran: Answering the call

Posted April 22, 2024

by Rebekah Orlando

If you could only make one last call, who would you reach out to?

Standing in prison with a death sentence awaiting him, Hossein made a call that would change his life forever. He had seen a MohabatTV program on his phone and knew there was something different — something hopeful about the message shared on the screen.

Taking a step of courage, he waited anxiously as the phone rang. Then, he received an answer from the Heart4Iran Call Center that gave him a transformative message of life.

Heart4Iran is a non-profit Christian organization that reaches Iran and Persian-speaking countries with the Gospel and helps grow the underground church. They do this by providing free resources, such as Bibles, 24/7 satellite broadcasting of MohabatTV which streams Christian-oriented programs and a 24/7 Call Center with trauma care agents. Today, over 300 house churches in Iran have been planted because of their dedication to see the Gospel spread.

Photo by Heart4Iran

“There are currently between 300,000 to one million Christians in Iran, most of whom are part of the underground church,” according to Mission Network News.

Hossein is one of the thousands of individuals who have called seeking Biblical understanding, prayer or someone to listen to them, as they share the wounds of how the current political structure of their country has suffocated their freedoms and violated their safety.

The Call Center not only shares the Gospel but disciples those on the other end.

Nazanin Baghestani, the program response manager with Heart4Iran’s Trauma Care Call Center, said in an interview with Koinesúnē Magazine, “Discipleship is very important for us to keep engaging them in God's Word and making sure they are rooted and they are strong.”

Photo by Heart4Iran

Many who call face persecution after they decide to follow Jesus, according to All Arab News.

“On a regular basis, Christians are arbitrarily detained, arrested, tortured and sentenced to lengthy prison terms,” according to the Family Research Council. “Converts from Islam to Christianity are specifically targeted by the regime and labeled a national security threat.”

Persecution forces many to flee the country, according to Mission News Network.

“If they travel outside Iran and become refugees somewhere else, we follow up with them and disciple them,” Baghestani said.

“The government is just following up and trying to find them in different ways. And once they find, you know, the underground church, they’re raided,” Baghestani said.

While those working with Heart4Iran know of the dangers both they and the Iranians face, they are comforted knowing that God is sovereign.

Photo by Heart4Iran

Matthew 5:10-12 says, “Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven.”

If you feel the Lord tugging on your heart for those who don’t know the love of God or can’t speak of Him, there are a few ways you can help. 

Above all, your prayers for provision and protection are greatly appreciated. 

Aside from prayer, you can donate financially to Heart4Iran on their website here or by calling 330-983-5001.

Over 50,000 lives have been changed because of one call those individuals made to the Call Center. Not only did Hossein surrender his life to Jesus, but he received a Bible from Heart4Iran and now, two years later, is free from prison.

The Lord calls His children in different ways for His ordained purposes. Hossein’s story is just one example of how God’s kingdom work will never be stopped.

So, what is the Lord calling you to do today?

Rebekah is originally from Delaware but now lives in Norfolk, Virginia. She is currently earning her M.A. in Journalism from Regent University. In her free time she enjoys playing piano, singing on the worship team at her church, and hanging with her friends. She hopes to encourage many through her writing and remind them of the truth of the gospel.