The UK director of Aid to the Church in Need is appealing for prayer and action to spare the life of an Iranian pastor who faces execution for refusing to renounce his Christian faith.
Neville Kyrke-Smith called for Christians to “speak up and pray out loud” as a decision is awaited following the retrial of Yusuf Nadarkhani.
Mr Nadarkhani, 35, who is married with two children, was sentenced to death in September 2010 when he was found guilty of apostasy.
An appeal was subsequently lodged and, despite upholding the original sentence, the Supreme Court agreed that the case be re-opened.
A verdict is expected imminently after last week’s four-day trial.
Mr Kyrke-Smith said: “There needs to be a voice for the silent and suffering Church – and for over 60 years Aid to the Church in Need has spoken out when others have feared to do so.
“Now is the time to speak up and pray out loud for Christians placed in a stranglehold by oppression.
“The decision to execute Pastor Nadarkhani is not justifiable in the name of any religion, it is a totalitarian act – one man’s life being ended to dissuade others from opposing the political regime.
“All who love God – whatever their faith – must join in prayer that this decision be overturned.
“The Catholic community must not be struck dumb as such suffering goes on.”Please read his story at Aid to the Church in Need HERE.