Questions for CAPTIVE IN IRAN by Maryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh

  1. Have you been to Iran or any Muslim country?
  2. When the girls’ flat was first ransacked, what stood out as a warning sign for their future treatment?
  3. The testimonies of these two Christian girls were described early in their story. What part of the girls’ testimonies had the most impact on you?
  4. The first time the interview/interrogation occurred with Mr Rasti he accused them of reading a distorted version of the Bible. He mentioned another ‘correct’ version was on sale in Iran. Have you heard this sort of objection before?
  5. What sort of women were in prison in Evin Jail and how was it run?
  6. How would you describe the legal proceedings in the girls’ case? What processes were deployed to deny the girls freedom?
  7. The book is dedicated to a girl called Shirin. Why was she in jail and what happened to her?
  8. A question as to whether God could see the plight of the prisoners, and why he seemed to do nothing about it was raised to the girls. How did they answer this?
  9. What privileges were the girls denied while in prison? How did they respond?
  10. What or who sustained the girls in one of the darkest, most dangerous places in the world?  How did the girls react when they found out the world was praying for them and agitating for their release?  Are there any lasting lessons for us to learn from these girls’ endurance and faith?
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CAPTIVE IN IRAN BY Maryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh

Captive in Iran.pngMaryam Rostampour and Marziyeh Amirizadeh knew they were putting their lives on the line. Islamic laws in Iran forbade them from sharing their Christian beliefs, but in three years, they’d covertly put New Testaments into the hands of twenty thousand of their countrymen and started two secret house churches.

In 2009, they were finally arrested and held in the notorious Evin Prison in Tehran, a place where inmates are routinely tortured and executions are commonplace. In the face of ruthless interrogations, persecution, and a death sentence, Maryam and Marziyeh chose to take the radical―and dangerous―step of sharing their faith inside the very walls of the government stronghold that was meant to silence them. In Captive in Iran, two courageous Iranian women recount how God used their 259 days in Evin Prison to shine His light into one of the world’s darkest places, giving hope to those who had lost everything and showing love to those in despair.

Bookclub questions for ’50 women’

  1. What do you think is the reason Michelle DeRusha wrote this book and what criteria do you think she has used for choosing the women, and the details of their lives, she has included?
  2. Which story is your favourite and why?
  3. Is there someone included that you knew nothing about but found her life story challenging?
  4. What surprised you about the women of the 17th and 18th century who spoke up despite prejudice?
  5. Did any of these short summaries inspire you to read more about a particular woman?
  6. Are there any women you think should not have been included?
  7. How many ways did God meet these women? – give a few examples.
  8. Many of the women suffered for their obedience to God’s call. Can you give an example and how it challenged you in your ministry?
  9. Is there a phrase that stands out or comes to mind when considering the work of these women?
  10. Having read about these women, are you inspired to spend more time with God, and to seek his direction for your life?