Tennessee pastor returns home after long detention in India

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee pastor Bryan Nerren returned to the U.S. on May 19 after being detained in India for seven months.

Indian authorities first arrested Nerren in October 2019 and imprisoned him for six days for allegedly violating India’s customs laws. News reports said Nerren, pastor of International House of Prayer in Shelbyville, Tennessee, had $40,000 to pay expenses for Sunday School training conferences he was leading in India and Nepal. According to the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ), who provided Nerren’s legal counsel, Nerren had led these conferences for 17 years. After Nerren’s prison release, an Indian judge confiscated Nerren’s passport and banned his travel.

Since coming to power in 2014, the Bharatiya Janata Party (founded on Hindu ideology) has increasingly targeted Christians, according to International Christian Concern.

India is No. 10 on Open Door’s 2020 World Watch List of countries where persecution of Christians is highest. (Compiled from news sources)