And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, “Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”Luke 2:9-11, 13-14
We wish all our friends and partners a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! We pray for the Lord to give you a blessed and fruitful New Year. We praise God for the Lord’s faithfulness for carrying all of us in 2022 and bringing us this far. We thank you our friends for your continued prayers and partnership with us in our ministry of equipping servants for the Ethiopian Church and beyond. We would like to take this opportunity and give you our seasonal update.
Torah Scroll Gift to ETC by God’s Ancient Library
An organization called God’s Ancient Library based in Minneapolis, Minnesota selected and gave ETC the Torah Scroll. The handing over ceremony was conducted in Minneapolis on September 8-9, 2022. Dr. Frew Tamrat, the principal of ETC, and Dr. Semeon Mulatu, the General Secretary of Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church, were invited to take part in the handing over ceremony.
We are grateful to God and the givers Mr. Ken and Barbera Larson for selecting ETC to be the recipient of this valuable manuscript among the five institutions selected to receive the scroll this year. Dr. Frew carried the scroll from the US to Ethiopia. We will work to find a secure place to put this valuable resource.
ETC Principal Visit to the US
During and after the handing over ceremony of the Torah scroll, Dr. Frew met and visited several of ETC friends and partners. He traveled to the US for the first time after the Covid pandemic. He was able to share about ETC and the progress of the new building construction to ETC friends and partners in the US. In three weeks, he traveled to five Cities in five states, Minneapolis (MN), San Francisco (CA), Atlanta (GO), Grand Rapids (MI), and Washington DC.
The Lord gave him favor before the people he met and was able to explore possibility of partnership with some churches and institutions like Bethel University, Calvin University, Columbia Biblical Seminary and other para-church organizations. He also presented the funding need of ETC and especially for ETC‘s new building. Several people have shown interest to pray and consider supporting ETC.
In his visit to the US, Dr. Frew was also able to visit and spend time with ETC Alumni living in the USA. We are thankful for the fruitful visits and appreciate your continued prayers and commitment to support ETC.
The All Africa Langham Preaching Consultation
ETC in partnership with Langham Preaching Africa and Langham Partnership International conducted the all Africa Langham preaching Consultation from October 1-8, 2022.
The consultation was held in Addis Ababa. Seventy five participants who came from 27 African countries attended the event. In addition to the participants from Africa, Dr. Paul Windsor the International Director for Langham preaching and Mrs. Ruth Slater, the Associate Langham Preaching Director from UK, were present at the consultation. This consultation was the biggest gathering held by Langham Preaching. It took place five years after the 2017 Ghana consultation.
The focus of the consultation was to get to know one another through the fellowship of Langham preaching Africa and to strengthen the Langham preaching movement in the continent.
Seminar on “The Health and Wealth Gospel” in Africa
The ETC Alumni Association together with ETC Administration organized a half day seminar on October 8th, 2022. The topic of the seminar was “The Gospel of Health and Wealth Good or Bad for Africa? Towards Biblical Response”. The keynote speaker was Dr. Femi Adeleye the Director of the Institute for Christian Impact (ICI) and Langham preaching Africa.
He is a well-known author of the book, “Preachers of a Different Gospel”. In his presentation, Dr. Adeleye showed from the Scriptures how the Health and Wealth Gospel is unbiblical and how it has become a great challenge for the spread of the true Gospel in the African Church. He outlined Biblical responses to refute this heretical teaching that is affecting the believers in the church of Africa negatively.
Testimony of ETC Graduate: Declaring the Gospel of Christ Among Unreached People Group in Ethiopia and in A Muslim Nation in Africa
We thought you will relate more with testimony of our student if we present it as he wrote it in first person. Below you will read the testimony of “Barnabas” (a pseudo-name) who graduated from ETC in 2022 from the Master of Arts in Christian- Muslim Relations program.
Trip to Mursi – Southwest Ethiopia
I am the first child in the family. I only have one sister and two brothers. I started going to church when I was 6 years old. When I was in the 11th grade, I had a chance to go to the Mursi along with the church youth group. That was “watershed” moment in my Christian life.
My Mom always told me to read my Bible. That was how she influenced my life. Although I was a follower of Christ, I did not know what being a believer really was, until I went to Mursi and had an encounter with the Lord and that totally changed my life. My concept of God changed my prayer life, and the way I read the Bible.
Joining University & Holy Matrimony
After finishing high school, like most Ethiopians, I was able to attend a university that the government chose on my behalf. There, I was a leader of the student’s fellowship for two years and finished my college with a good grade. The government assigned me to teach at another university in the eastern part of Ethiopia. I also became the leader in Christian fellowship in that university as well. That was where I met my lovely wife, when she came from Dire Dawa to visit her cousin who used to teach at the university with me.
We got married on May 1st 2001 and went to Mursi to visit with a missionary couple who were celebrating their second-year wedding anniversary. They were ministering in Mursi. I used to tell my wife about Mursi and she was excited to see the place that changed my life. The Mursi people are one of the unreached people groups in Ethiopia living in Southwest of the country close to the boarder of South Sudan.
Mission Work in Mursi
We were in Mursi for a month and were also able to help the missionaries in their different activities. On the final day, they showed us a movie about the Kewagu people from the neighboring tribe that the Mursi people considered slaves. It showed how the transformed Mursi believers were willing to reach out to these people with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. They also told us that they were looking for helpers to assist them in the ministry. As it is written in Luke 10 “the harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore, pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers to His harvest.”
After returning to Addis, my wife and I started praying about the ministry in Mursi, and God spoke to us clearly from His Word. After five months of prayer, we asked God “who will support us?” He gave us Psalm 23 and we went to Mursi by faith. We were sent by our church to be missionaries among the Mursi people in the South – Western part of Ethiopia. We served there for five years and the Lord was faithful to us and to the ministry. He blessed us and those who have labored before us with much fruit. As a result, there is an active church for the first time among the Mursi people. We helped in discipling and equipping the believers in that church and encouraged the elders to go out and reach other Mursi people.
The project phased out and our ministry with the Mursi people was over. However, we strongly believe that the Mursi people are now well established to continue the work and reach other Mursi non-believers and the neighboring tribes. This gave us peace and confirmation that the Lord will continue to work among them.
Mission Work in Afar
After serving for five years in Mursi, we returned back to Addis. We sought the Lord’s face for our next endeavor. After a year of seeking the Lord’s face, God led us to work with the Afar people in the North-Eastern part of Ethiopia. We felt that the Lord has equipped us to work among the pastoralist unreached people group of Afar. This helped us to engage well with the Afar people. Afar is highly Muslim dominated area in Ethiopia.
We started our ministry in Afar and by the time we finished our ministry we were able to train and equip 115 church elders and ministers in the Afar region and they were able to mobilize their congregation to reach 20 Afar men and women with the Good News of Jesus Christ. We then took our sabbatical leave after eight years of ministry.
The Director of SIM East Africa Mission Sending office, who was also my first course teacher at ETC, recommended that I take a new MA course in “Christian Muslim Relations” that was launched for the first time at ETC. Through that course, I was able to engage in the world of Islam and found how they are far from the truth.
The New Mission Field
Our mission Director invited us to his office and told us there is an opportunity to work in North Africa but he didn’t tell us where the place was. Soon after that, my wife went for training to Kenya and I went to my friend’s church on that Sunday. An Egyptian Pastor came to preach in that Ethiopian church, and he said, “You Ethiopians you have freedom, and you are enjoying it; when there are many in the Muslim world waiting to hear the truth from you.” I was crying the whole time, I don’t know why, but I knew it was the Holy Spirit tugging at the strings of my heart.
Graduation from ETC and New Beginning
After some time, our Director told us the place we were assigned and we began to get ready. At the beginning of the new semester I told my Department head at the college that I was not going to finish my classes and might be moving to North Africa soon. He encouraged me to do my best until I went to my mission field. By God’s grace, I was able to finish all my courses and graduated from ETC in MA in Christian Muslim Relations on June 18, 2022. The visa we were waiting for three months arrived on June 20th 2022. And we left for North Africa on July 11, 2022.
Since we have been there, God has been so gracious to us and has provided us with a place and we were able to find a school for our children. At present, we are learning the language so that we will be able to reach our brothers and sisters with the message of the Gospel in the language of their heart.
Dear friends of ETC, we thank you for partnering with us to equip students like “Barnabas” who committed their lives to take the gospel of Jesus Christ beyond the borders of Ethiopia. We want to encourage you to continue to invest in equipping more “Barnabas’s” by supporting ETC in prayer and by giving financially especially in season where God gave us the biggest gift, His Son Jesus Christ!
Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!
Financial Donations Information: Please visit the how you can help page.