Endure for Saeed 5K run and walk to benefit Iranian refugees

A 5k run and walk will be held 8:30 a.m. Saturday at Northfield Church, 2933 N. 15th St., for Iranian-American pastor Saeed Abedini, who has been held in an Iranian prison since September 2012.

Jailed for his Christian faith, the U.S. citizen and Boise, Idaho, minister faces a sentence of eight years in Iran’s Evin prison. Charged with “undermining the national security of Iran” because of his involvement with Christian house churches, Saeed has faced beatings from Iranian Revolutionary Guards, and until recently, was refused medical treatment for injuries sustained in prison.

The event will also feature a message from Abedini’s wife, Naghmeh Abedini.

The run will benefit other Iranians who have had to flee for their lives from their home country to seek refuge in Turkey because of their Christian beliefs.

Turkish law prohibits refugees from working, and because the cost of living is so high in Turkey, the refugees and their families need support to provide for their day-to-day basic needs and necessities.

Registration for the event is $15 for individuals and $40 for families (regardless of the size of family).

For more details, information and to register online, visit www.endureforsaeed.org, or call Oakhill Baptist Church, Humboldt, 332-1058.

Abedini became a Christian in 2000 and began starting house churches in Iran. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 2010 through marriage.

He traveled to and from Iran safely eight times to build a government-approved orphanage, but was arrested while on a trip to approve the orphanage’s board members.

In August, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry called on Iran to work cooperatively to release Saeed and other Americans jailed in Iran.

Abedini also has two children who live in Boise, Idaho.