ranians Flocking to Christian Television

By

Sze Leng Chan
Christian Post Correspondent
Fri, Sep. 21 2007 12:51 PM ET
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A
Christian satellite TV network has reported “spectacular church
growth” in Iran and noted the importance of media in
strengthening the churches there as well as in reaching out to Muslims.

SAT-7
is “receiving a lot of reports on people watching this channel
more than almost any other channel in Iran,” Debbie Brink, the
network’s executive director, reported recently to Mission
Network News (MNN).

She said SAT-7 had deliberately chosen not to tackle political issues and focuses instead on the message of hope and peace.

“I
think we attract viewers in these times, because they’re looking for an
alternative message. They’re tired of all the conflict and the war, and
they do see opportunities for learning more about God’s love, His
forgiveness, reconciliation and peace,” she stated.

In recent
years, an increasing number of Muslims throughout the Middle East have
converted to Christianity through watching Christian satellite
television programming.

Satellite TV has emerged as an important
and effective evangelism tool to share the Gospel with Muslims in
closed Islamic states.

Muslims watching the shows have confessed
that the message of hope and love is a stark contrast to the oppressive
Islamic message conveyed by their government and on Islamic TV programs.

“The
house church movement has seen spectacular growth,” reported
Stefan De Groot, Open Doors Middle East field worker, in a recent
report on the growth of Christianity in Iran.

“This is not
happening just because of dreams and miracles,” he said, as is
common among Muslims. “The majority of people now come to faith
through the multimedia, and especially satellite-TV. Nobody can control
which programs Iranians watch.”

SAT-7 is the first Arabic
language Christian satellite channel to broadcast successfully in the
Middle East and claims a viewership of 8-10 million in the Middle East
and North Africa.

It also broadcasts 24-hours-a-day in Farsi and
Turkish through SAT-7 Pars, which takes its name from the Farsi word
that embodies the Persian culture.

Christian Post reporter Michelle Vu contributed to this report.

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