It’s crazy to think that the church that I worship at and work for, despite it’s size (less than 100 people), has a ministry to Iranians! But we do, and that’s where I was this evening; at Iranian Alpha.
We’ve just started our second Alpha Course. Last time, on our first Iranian Alpha, 9 people were baptised after making professions of faith. We’re really expectant of what God is going to do with this second course. This week was our first proper session, Who is Jesus?
When I have doubts about the Christian faith (and we all do at times!) I’ve found that going back to basics has been the best way of combatting them. Forget complex theology, arguments and dogmas. Back to basics does it for me every time.
And it was a absolute pleasure to lead the session on Jesus’ identity. It was even more a pleasure because, for once, I wasn’t dealing with your bog standard British atheist (even though you’re all great!), I was dealing with people who’d grown up in Iran as Muslims, amidst all the political pressures and the intertwining of Islam with the State (more so than Christianity is with the British government!). They had insights that I’d never thought of, and experiences which would never come my way.
God is doing an amazing thing with the Iranian people and I’m very happy to be a part of that ministry. We’re currently working on what to do next in terms of our ‘Iranian Ministry’. An idea has been going around in my head to have a section of our church website in Iranian, which I think would go a long way. However, I’d love to translate all our liturgy into Iranian and have translations for all the worship songs for Sunday mornings. I wonder whether there’s a pot of money in the Church in Wales for such ministries? Who knows, but we’re going to minister whether there’s money there or not.
We have two guys in our church who are Iranian Christians and therefore translate for us, which is brilliant. However, I think I’d like to have a go at a bit of Farsi myself.
I think I shall post more updates on this evolving ministry on the blog in the near future. Please pray for the guys, many of them seeking asylum, that they would know God’s special presence with them through this course. Pray also that we’d minister effectively through reliance on the Spirit in everything we do and say.
Do you think it’s a bit presumptuous to get the Baptism pool ready?! 😛
Dean is a Minister in the Anglican Church. Currently he is Curate in the parishes of Bedwas, Machen, Michaelston-y-Fedw and Rudry in South Wales. He was born and bred in Wales, is married to Megan, and has two dogs called Taliesin and Melyn, and two cats named Sinsir and Hâf. He graduated from Cardiff University with a BA Hons. in Theology & Religious Studies, and has studied for an MA in Theology, Ministry & Mission at Trinity College Bristol. He also holds a Cert.RSCM from the Royal School of Church Music. He loves playing music, walking, reading, blogging and horse riding as well as going to the cinema and theatre.
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