Iranian women to share their story at Milligan College

Published 9:26 am Monday, October 10, 2016

Maryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh

Maryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh

Sharing the word of Christ saw Maryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh jailed in 2009 and imprisoned for over 250 days.
The duo has since been freed and have spanned the country sharing their story in the book, “Captive in Iran,” which they co-authored.
Their story will come to Carter County with Rostampour and Amirizadeh sharing their experience at Milligan College on Tuesday, Oct. 11, at 11 a.m. in the Mary B. Martin Auditorium located inside Seeger Chapel on campus. The event is free and open to the public.
According to their book’s website, Rostampour and Amirizadeh spent 259 days in Evin Prison, noted as “perhaps” the world’s most notorious prison, as many around the world prayed for their release. With international pressure heating up following months of interrogation and abuse inside the facility, they were both freed in November 2009 and cleared of all charges.
Due to the country’s Islamic laws forbidding the two women to share their Christian beliefs, they secretly put New Testaments in the hands of thousands of countrymen for years and started two secret churches.
“Maryam and Marziyeh were recommended by the campus ministry at another school,” said Brad Wallace, Milligan’s campus minister. “Milligan is part of a higher education association called the CCCU (Council for Christian Colleges and Universities), and several of us who do this work at CCCU schools try to network share suggestions for speakers and programs.”
The story of the duo is impactful, according to the minister.
“The compelling part to me about their story is their continued faithfulness and courage in the face of violent persecution,” Wallace said. “Most of us in the American church have little idea what it means to suffer for the sake of the Gospel, certainly not to the degree that believers in many other countries experience regularly. We have an obligation to become aware, and to support our brothers and sisters actively through prayer and involvement. My hope is that hearing Maryam and Marziyeh’s story in person will challenge our campus community to be grateful for the freedoms we take for granted, to have a broader view beyond our own experience, and to take our faith seriously and be more willing to take risks for Christ.”
While the month of October is typically busy on campus, this year has added an extra bit of allure with the 150th celebration of the campus on tap.
“October is normally a busy time at Milligan, and this year it is especially full,” Wallace said. “Maryam and Marziyeh’s visit is part of our annual Missions Emphasis Week, and is made possible by support from our Student Government Association, for which I am very grateful. This sesquicentennial year is a time to reflect on our mission, our reason for existing as a college, and for me, part of the mission always needs to be about pushing us out past the familiar and the known to the wider world, where we find that God is already working in remarkable ways. Doing so always expands our view of the Kingdom which is so much bigger than my own tiny personal narrative, and makes us grateful, humble, and more willing to trust God enough to join Him in His work. Stories are one of the best ways that we do this, so I think this event is a great and timely fit.”
Following the morning event, both authors will be available for a question and answer session, providing a more in-depth look into their story. The session will be held at 7 p.m. inside Hyder Auditorium, Milligan College’s Science Building.

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