J. Daryl Byler, a Mennonite minister and attorney in Iran talks about his delegation of different American religious leaders’ trip to Iran in an attempt to stave off war, their meetings with various ayatollahs, the Iranian people’s love for Americans, whether or not he’s on a Potemkin tour, and his upcoming meeting with Ahmadinejad.
J. Daryl Byler is director of the Mennonite Central Committee’s Washington Office. He is an ordained Mennonite minister and an attorney. Before taking his current position, he served for six years as pastor of Jubilee Mennonite Church and as a staff attorney with East Mississippi Legal Services, both in Meridian, Miss. Daryl is married to Cynthia Lehman Byler, an elementary school teacher, and they have three children, Jessica and Holden (Eastern Mennonite University students), and Jeremy (a high-school freshman in D.C.). In connection with his current work, Daryl follows and writes about U.S. policy affecting the Middle East, and he has traveled frequently to the region, including visits to Iraq, Iran, Syria, Lebanon and Israel-Palestine. In his spare time, he enjoys reading, retreats and running.