Randy and Katy Smelser

Americans living in Germany but citizens of heaven

Persian Awakening

God sometimes works in quiet ways. Something has been happening here in Germany among the Persian refugee population.
It has been reported in „Christianity Today“.


I got to experience it myself. The church of Christ in Cologne asked me to come and preach. The weekend I was to go was also a baptismal Sunday for the Persian. My sermon was from John 3 - The New Birth. It was the first time I had ever been translated into Persian. We sang „Shout to the Lord“ in German and Persian. Afterwards we ate Persian stew with quince and got to talk and I found out a bit of what was happening.
There is a Persian preacher. He lives in a city about an hour from Cologne but is friends with a family that used to live in Cologne and were members of the church there. Through his contacts in the Persian community throughout Germany he has run into a lot of people who are searching. Many are attending any sort of church that they can find but want know more in their mother tongue and to be baptized.
Many churches in Germany do not immerse or do not see the need to fill the baptistry for „just one person“ and so this preacher has come to the church through his friends and asked if he can use the baptistry. Because of the high importance of baptism, the church in Cologne is happy to have him bring people.
On this Sunday 9 were to be baptized and one child blessed but because of sickness only 6 could come. They were from several cities in Germany and many knew each other but not all. They all had the desire to follow Christ (i.e. to become Christians). In the „Christianity Today“ article they report that many Persians are dreaming of Jesus and then go searching for someone to tell them about Him. I have heard of this before but none of them on Sunday reported that. Some may have problems with their families because of converting. Most already have problems with their homeland but now after converting they could face death if they were to return. And yet they come to Christ.
The powers that be in their homeland try to stop Jesus Christ but the more they do their dastardly plans the more God seems to be moving. Besides the awakening here in Germany, we know of Persians coming to the Lord in Turkey.
In the last two year 209 Persians (not only from Iran, Turkey, Irak, Afganistan) have been baptized at the church in Cologne! God is using this small church to build His Kingdom even if this local church does not show numerical growth. Thank God for how he uses small churches in the Persian Awakening