Iran “one of the fastest-growing churches  in the  world: ICC report

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By  our  Special  Correspondent

Vatican City, Jan 23  (IVC)    The  Islamic  Republic of Iran  has become “one of  the fastest-growing churches  in the  world” despite worst  persecutions   , The 2023 “The Persecutors of  the  Year”  report released  recently  here said.

                The  new  report  from  a Christian   advocacy group said  that  Christianity  continued  to thrive  and  grow despite  brutal  repressions and  attempts  by  governments, groups and  individuals  across the  world to  quash the  faith.

                The report was  brought  out by  the  advocacy  group  International Christian Concern (ICC).  “Christians  currently  make  up  only a  small minority in Iran, numbering  somewhere in between five  lakh and eight lakh, according to ICC’s  report.

                Though  the  government ruled by  Grand  Ayatollah Ali  Khamenei  enforced   strict  adherence to Sharia law , ICC’s  report revealed  that hundreds  of  thousands of  Iranians “from all different kinds of walks of  life” have  converted to  Christianity. In China , the  report  said  that  the  Chinese  Communist  Party  (CCP) “requires  that its  citizens  worship the  state, co-opting  every  religious  structure  possible into  a  mouthpiece of CCP propaganda”.

                Under  the  leadership  of Chinese President Xi Jinping, the  penalties  for  living  out  one’s  Christian  faith  have  continued  to rise.  Amid persecution,  the  report  pointed out  that there  are now 70 million to  100 million “underground  Christians” who  have  refused  to  follow the CCP’s mandate  to “worship  the state”, choosing instead to  risk  their  lives  by following Jesus  Christ.

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