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More News from Iran

Saudi Arabia

Iran used to be called Persia. The body of water between Iran and Saudi Arabia is commonly known as the Persian Gulf. But most Arab countries call it the Arabian Gulf. In 2010, Iran threatened to ban or seize airplanes of any airline flying over Iran that called the gulf the Arabian Gulf.

Now some Iranians are upset again because the Internet site Google Maps left out the name of the gulf entirely. A government spokesman in Iran said Google is “fabricating lies.”

Lawyer Arrested

Pastor Youcef is a prisoner in Iran because he protested a government rule that said children must study the Quran in school. The Quran is the Muslim holy book. Pastor Youcef, a Christian, did not want his 8 and 9 year old sons to be forced to study the book. (You can read more about Pastor Youcef at

Recently Pastor Youcef’s lawyer was reportedly sentenced to nine years in prison for “acting against national security.” Now other lawyers may be afraid to help Pastor Youcef, fearing they might be imprisoned.

Helpful Animals


In some countries where The Voice of the Martyrs works, the government makes it difficult or impossible to build church buildings. Sometimes Christians in those countries meet secretly in house churches.

VOM friends in one restricted country take church to the people instead of inviting people to the church! They travel from place to place, sharing and teaching the truths of the Bible. They encourage Christians who may never have the opportunity to meet with other Christians.

But police officers at checkpoints might stop cars and find Bibles and other Christian materials, and arrest the traveling Christians. So the Christians pack the materials on the backs of animals! The animals can carry the Christians and their books over mountains and across farmland, away from roads and checkpoints.

Ask a VOM Worker: Strength from the Lord


Question: What advice do you have for kids who might be worried that they are not strong enough to face persecution?

Answer: The kids and adults who have been persecuted probably never thought they’d be strong enough either. But they get thrown into those situations. They act based on the things they’ve learned from the Bible, and the Lord gives them the strength.

Kids in the U.S. shouldn’t look at it like, “I’m not very strong.” They should just act like they are, and start sharing the gospel with their friends and wait for God to help them when they need it.

Children’s Bible for Albania

Albanian kids with children’s Bibles

Albania is near Greece and Turkey. It used to be an atheist country, and no religions were allowed. (An atheist is someone who does not believe God exists.) Since 1990, religions have no longer been against the law.

Muslim countries have spent millions of dollars in Albania trying to convert the people to Islam, the religion of Muslims. Today the majority of the people are Muslims, but many are not serious about their faith.

Albanian children in the photo are receiving copies of a children’s Bible distributed by The Voice of the Martyrs. Pray that all Albanian children will know that Jesus loves them.

More Balloon Messages

Scripture Balloons
Scripture Balloons

Read the previous post, “Balloon Messages,” to find about about tracts that The Voice of the Martyrs has launched into North Korea inside Scripture balloons. The tracts explain the truth about God to North Korean citizens.

Another kind of Scripture balloon includes the words from the Bible Book of Romans, chapters 6 through 8 on one side. The other side has pictures that illustrate the Good News of Jesus.

So far, VOM workers and helpers have launched more than 500,000 Scripture balloons to reach North Koreans for Christ.