Saeed Abedini, the Christian preacher and American citizen who was held captive in Iran due to his Christian faith, revealed the hardest thing about his more than three-year detainment during an interview this week with Fox News' Greta Van Susteren.
Abedini said that, in addition to beatings and poor treatment, the "hardest thing" he faced in prison was being kept in the same room for months without books or other activities to occupy himself.
At one point, he said that both he and Amir Mirzaei Hekmati, a former U.S. Marine who was also held in Iran and was released along with Abedini as part of a landmark prisoner swap, were in the same confinement room together.
"That was the hardest thing in prison, especially in solitary like that, because there is nothing to do," Abedini said. "I made a plan that I could talk to [Hekmati], encourage him and, mostly, I was praying."
Saeed Abedini and his wife Nagmeh prior to his arrest (ACLJ)
Abedini said that he would, many times, pray for hours, sometimes finding himself appealing to the Lord for more than 20 hours in one day.
"I just prayed and prayed," he said. "It was wonderful time with the Lord."
The Christian pastor also recounted a troubling moment that stood out in his mind, telling Van Susteren about what happened when he found himself standing before an Iranian judge, who told Abedini, "You know why you are here" to which the pastor responded, "Yeah, I'm here because of my Christian faith."
But the judge insisted that Abedini had been detained because officials believed that he wanted to "use Christianity to remove government" — a charge to which the American pastor repeatedly denied.
"I was like, 'No, I don't want to do that. I just came here to start an orphanage, loving people and share the gospel with people and just that,'" Abedini recounted. But the judge said, "No, you guys are using Christianity to remove the government."
The judge ended up screaming at Abedini and sending him back to prison.
Listen to Abedini share his story below:
As TheBlaze has reported, Abedini was first arrested in 2012 on charges stemming from meetings he had with other Christians inside private homes — an act that is not illegal in Iran.
(H/T: Fox News)
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