American Presbyterian missionaries first established a presence in Iran in 1834 (then known as Persia) and, as was often the case with Presbyterian mission efforts, quickly went on to launch Presbyterian churches, modern schools and hospitals, clinics and nursing schools, as well as colleges. The Evangelical Presbyterian Church of Iran became independent in 1934 and today the church serves the Christian community through three language-aligned presbyteries: Armenian, Assyrian and Persian.
More Iranians have come to Christ since 1979 than in the previous 13 centuries and the Iranian church is sprinting to keep up with the need to equip more leaders to meet this growth. Through The Outreach Foundation, Peachtree supports a missionary to Iranians who works to equip the leaders of the Iranian church. They hold leadership seminars and record Christian resources in Persian for broadcast into Iran through satellite television. While Christians continue to worship in churches that have existed for hundreds of years, the current growth of the Christian community is largely through house church movements.
As a result of the rapid spread of the gospel in Iran, Christians have increasingly been victims of persecution. Muslim converts and church leaders are particularly vulnerable and many Christians have been imprisoned in recent years.