Timeline of the Saeed Abedini's ministry, arrest


2001: Naghmeh Panahi leaves her Idaho home to minister in Iran following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks in the United States.

2002: Naghmeh meets Saeed Abedini, a Christian convert, while doing ministry in Iran.

2003: Naghmeh and Saeed are engaged to be married.

2004: The couple is married in Tehran.

2005: Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is elected President of Iran and the persecution of Christians escalates. Saeed, who is influential in the Iranian house-church movement, decides to accompany his family back to the United States for their safety and to protect the established house churches.

2008: Saeed is ordained with the American Evangelistic Association.

2009: The couple, hoping the hostilities toward Christians has waned, return to Iran for ministry work. While there, Saeed is detained and questioned, but told he can remain in Iran as long as he is not involved in the house-church movement. The government invites Saeed to launch a humanitarian effort. The couple decides to open an orphanage on donated land and begins the long process toward building the facility and obtaining security permits. Saeed travels freely between Iran and the United States as the process to open the orphanage continues.

2010: Saeed is granted U.S. citizenship through his American wife.

2012: Saeed returns to Iran in June to finish up the remaining details to open the orphanage when he is detained and placed under house arrest. In September he was arrested by Iran's Revolutionary Guard and imprisoned at the notorious Evin Prison in Tehran.

Jan. 27, 2013: Saeed is sentenced to eight years in prison for undermining national security.

March 3: Saeed tells his family he believes he has internal bleeding after several beatings in prison.

June 4: Naghmeh testifies before the U.N. Human Rights Council, saying her husband was suspected of having internal bleeding from untreated injuries brought on by torture and beatings.

July 20: After several unsuccessful attempts, Saeed finally receives medical treatment at a private hospital. His digestive tracks shows signs of repeated injury.

Aug. 25: Saeed's appeal is rejected.

Sept. 23: Naghmeh unexpectedly crosses paths with Iranian President Hassan Rouhani while both were at the U.N. General Assembly. When she notices his security detail, Naghmeh hands one of his aides a letter she had been carrying around, which her husband had written to Rouhani. The aide vows to give Rouhani the letter.

Sept. 26: More than 100 prayer vigils in 40 states and 15 nations mark the one-year anniversary of Saeed's arrest.

Sept. 27: President Barack Obama asks Iranian President Hassan Rouhani about the fate of Saeed during a rare phone call in which he also broached the topic of the imprisonment of several other Americans, and the country's nuclear program. It was the first call from a U.S. president to an Iranian counterpart since the 1979 hostage crisis.

Oct. 11: The European Parliament issues a resolution calling for Saeed's release.

For more information, visit www.savesaeed.com.