by Christine Daniel
Kia and Negin, born in Iran and now living in the UK, are passionate about helping people from the Farsi-speaking community. Their story has had its ups and downs, but they’ve seen God’s faithfulness in their lives and ministry.
Negin grew up in a Muslim family in Iran. Her father died when she was thirteen; she was lonely, and life was hard. At twenty-seven she left everything and everyone she knew and went to Germany because of an arranged marriage. After two months of married life, her husband left.
Negin recalls, “I was shocked, deeply rejected, and didn’t know what to do next. My brother who lives in London asked me to come to the UK and claim asylum. I arrived in 2006. I was hopeless, depressed, and lonely for a few months, and then I met some Iranians from Agapé [Cru’s ministry in the UK] on a bus, inviting me to come to church. That was a divine moment, as I was searching for hope and a place for comfort.”
Kia also had a dramatic entry to the UK, travelling illegally underneath a lorry.
“When I arrived in the UK in 1999, I claimed asylum and told lies to the government. I attended a church to gain knowledge about Christianity to support my asylum application, but what I learned changed my life completely.
“In 2000 I received a revelation from Jesus. He asked me to trust in Him fully and said He would set me free from my sin. Through His teaching I understood that I could lie to anyone, but not Him. Jesus was offering me the freedom that I was looking for. His teaching and character changed my life. I repented from my sin and made my decision to follow Him.
“At the end of 2000, I wrote a letter to the government saying that I was a liar. I told them my true life-story and waited for their response. After two weeks they allowed me to stay in the UK as a refugee. That was a miracle. Jesus not only showed me His grace but also gave me a purpose to live.”
Kia joined the staff of Agapé in 2003. He met Negin at church, and they were married in 2010.
Negin has a passion to help families. “God gave me His love and compassion towards women and couples from Iran. I have a desire to introduce Jesus to them. As I experienced hopelessness and rejection in my first marriage, I want to help others to have a godly marriage.”
Kia explains, “Initially we ministered to those who needed help to cope with life in a new country and who needed the Lord Jesus Christ. Now we have seen firsthand the pressures that married life brings. We have seen lots of Iranian couples struggling in their relationship. However, there do not seem to be many people or Farsi resources available to help them.”
Kia and Negin have been busy connecting with people from Farsi-speaking communities, including church leaders. They’ve also been working hard to make FamilyLife UK resources available in Farsi, such as the Together discipleship material for couples. This resource has been printed in an Islamic country as well as in Turkey and the UK last year.
When COVID lockdowns started, Kia and Negin built a recording studio in the dining room of their home, and they are working with Mohabbat TV, which provides biblical teaching and broadcasting services to Farsi speakers internationally. Their gospel-focused relationship ministry is reaching Farsi-speaking homes all over the world. They are currently in discussions to develop a 13-episode series on relationships. This opportunity will provide enormous reach and will be a great launch pad for the Farsi version of Together.
“We want to see each family of Farsi-speaking couples receive this teaching in Farsi and be blessed in their marriage,” Kia and Negin express. “We can see their pains and want to bring Jesus’s healing to them.”