Art And Culture

Imam Reza (AS) Shrine Host to Religious Conversions

Imam Reza (AS) Shrine Host to Religious ConversionsImam Reza (AS) Shrine Host to Religious Conversions

Over the current Iranian year (ending March 20), twelve foreign Christian tourists embraced Islam when visiting Imam Reza (AS) holy shrine.

Among the tourists aged between 21 and 51, there are eight women from Germany, Sweden, Belarus, Poland, America, Denmark and Russia, while four men are from Norway, Cameron, Netherland and Ireland, director of non-Iranian pilgrims’ affairs office of Astan Quds Razavi, Seyyed Mohamad-Javad Hasheminejad, mentioned.

“All are educated and decided to convert to Islam due to personal interest, reading Islamic books, curiosity to understand Islam, familiarity with Muslim friends, or being affected by the spiritual atmosphere of the Imam Reza (AS) holy shrine,” IRNA quoted him as saying.

Noting that as three of them have Iranian spouses, they had another motivation factor as well, Hasheminejad said.


Over the current year, 4.5 million foreign tourists visited the shrine which suggests the number has increased by 30 percent compared with last year, he underlined. “While the highest number of pilgrims were Arabs specially Iraqis, two percent of them were non-Muslim.”

Pointing to the fact that people from across the world are welcome to visit the shrine, he said, “on average, 15,000 tourists with different religions of European, African and Asian countries travel to Mashhad annually to visit the shrine.”

Special programs are also envisaged for the pilgrims, namely workshops, meetings, and conferences with the aim of providing the tourists with knowledge and information about Islamic issues, he stated.

Imam Reza (AS) shrine in the city of Mashhad, in Khorasan Razavi Province, is the largest of its kind in the world by dimension and the second largest by capacity. Within the complex, there are mosques, libraries, tombs, shrines, a museum and more. The shrine is annually host to over 25 million pilgrims.

Astan Quds Razavi is an autonomous charitable foundation in Mashhad, which manages the shrine and its various institutions. The office of non-Iranian pilgrims’ affairs is in charge of holding rituals for those embracing Islam.