The rest of the world often forgets that there are Christian churches dotted across the Muslim world and some of those communities date back to the earliest years of the faith. Fredrik Dahl and Reza Derakhshi from our Tehran bureau recently visited a remote medieval outpost of the Armenian Apostolic Church in the Islamic Republic of Iran. Their report says:
The last priest left the Black Church more than half a century ago and now the picture on the wall of a former monk’s cell is of the Islamic Republic’s founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, not Jesus.
But Iran says this medieval Armenian Christian retreat in a mountainous region close to Turkey and Armenia shows it is observing the rights of other faiths.
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Dahl interviewed Sebouh Sarkissian, the Armenian archbishop of Tehran, for the feature. As a FaithWorld extra, here is the Q&A of their talk:
Armenians make up the largest Christian minority in Iran, their presence dating back to the time of the ancient Persian empire, but their numbers have declined since the 1979 Islamic revolution.