Praying for Persian New Year

The most widely celebrated holiday among Persian people, both inside the country and for Persians worldwide, is called Nowruz. In Farsi, Nowruz literally means “new day.” One might be surprised to learn that this celebration predates Islam. Some believe it even goes back to the biblical time of King Cyrus the Great.

At various times of the year, many cultures have a New Year’s celebration. For Persians, this celebration usually takes place around the first day of spring and is celebrated for 14 days. This holiday is so interesting to those of us praying for the Persian world, and Muslims worldwide, because of what it represents as it is being celebrated.

After the Islamic Revolution of 1979 in Iran, hardliners attempted to suppress this holiday in an effort to “Islamize” the country. Iranians were quick to succumb to many new or increased Islamic rules, but Nouruz was one thing they were not willing to give up. Why is this interesting? It is a yearly reminder that the people of Iran are holding on to roots that are not Islamic. Their rebellion speaks volumes to the true heart of the nation—a longing for something greater. The ancient Persian empire still stands as a source of pride to the people, which distances them from the current leadership.


There are many traditions Persians have, which you can read about here, but what about Persian believers? This is a special time of year similarly to how Christmas is celebrated in the United States. It is as if the whole country closes down—schools, banks, etc. Nowruz is a national holiday for 14 days. It is time where people travel, vacation, visit family, and have parties. For Persian believers this makes for a great time to retreat, rest, seek God, and fellowship with one another. Not only during Nowruz are Persians hospitable, but this holiday gives an excuse to visit those who you may not always have access to. People will travel in or out of the country to be with their closest family and friends.

Praying During Persian New Year

Nowruz is a special time to pray for Persians worldwide. We would like to encourage you to pray with Persian ministries and those reaching Muslims worldwide during this time—March 20 to April 3. Click below to get a prayer guide from 24:14.

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We believe the Scriptures, both the Old and New Testaments, are inspired by God and are the revelation of God to man, the infallible, authoritative rule of faith and conduct. (2 Timothy 3:15-17, 1 Peter 1:21)

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We believe in the deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, in His virgin birth, in His sinless life, in His miracles, in His atoning death through His shed blood, in His bodily resurrection, in His ascension to the right hand of the Father where He intercedes for us, in His present rule as Head of the Church, and in His personal return in power and glory. (Matthew 1:23, Luke 1:31)

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We believe in the resurrection of both the saved and the lost; the saved unto the resurrection of eternal life in the presence of our Lord, and the lost unto the resurrection of damnation and eternal punishment. (Matthew 25:46, Mark 9:43-48)

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We believe in upholding the ordinances of the church of water baptism and holy communion.

The ordinance of baptism by immersion is commanded by the Scriptures. All who repent and believe in Christ as Savior and Lord are to be baptized. Thus, they declare to the world that they have died with Christ and that they also have been raised with Him to walk in newness of life. (Matthew 28:19, Mark 16:16, Acts 10:47,48, Romans 6:4)

The Lord’s Supper, consisting of the elements—bread and the fruit of the vine—, is the symbol expressing our sharing the divine nature of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:4), a memorial of His suffering and death (1 Corinthians 11:26), and a prophecy of His second coming (1 Corinthians 11:26), and is enjoined on all believers “till He comes!”