Area: 1,106,000 sq km
Fertile, mountain plateau surrounded by the drought-prone lowlands and deserts of the Red Sea coast; borders on Eritrea, Somalia, Kenya and Sudan. Landlocked since the secession of Eritrea.
Population: 84,975,606 Annual Growth: 2.62%
Capital: Addis Ababa
Official language: Amharic; majority of the population are able to speak it; English widely taught. Regional languages are very important Languages: 88 All languages
Largest Religion: Christian
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Leadership training is identified as a major reason that the churches potential is unfulfilled. The majority of church leaders have one year or less of training. Leadership is not meeting the demands (neither in numbers nor in quality) placed on it by such rapid church growth. Pray for the following:
a) Post-graduate training at the Ethiopian Graduate School of Theology in Addis Ababa. Pray for the provision of theologians and teachers who are godly and steeped in the Scriptures. Pray for provision for students who wish to pursue studies.
b) Degree-level training the Evangelical Theological College (KHC and SIM), Mekane Yesu Theological Seminary, Meserete Kristos College, the Pentecostal Bible College, Berhane Wongel Theological College, Trinity College and St. Pauls (both Orthodox).
c) The numerous Bible schools across the country run by denominations, such as the 127 Amharic Bible schools (KHC) and Mekane Yesu with many more.
d) The network of evening and short-term Bible schools and TEE programmes around the country where many thousands of local leaders and evangelists are trained. The Berhan Media Ministry runs a widespread Bible Correspondence Course. Bible Training Centres for Pastors trains nearly 1,500 students as part of a TEE programme. Poverty and long distances make these programmes all the more essential.
The less evangelized. ECFE and DAWN cooperated on studies that established the need for further mission research, and identified 30 unevangelized peoples accounting for 25 million people, mostly away from the centre of the nation. There are Ethiopians working among all of these:
a) The largely Muslim Somali, Harari and Afar regions in the east. Many thousands of Somalis have crossed into Ethiopia, fleeing the violence at home. Ethiopian ethnic Somalis number 4.5 million and are one of Africas least reached peoples. The number of Christians is growing, but ministry to these people comes at great risk and personal cost to those sharing.
b) Many sections of Oromia, especially in the east and south, are strongly Muslim and increasingly assertive within the federal framework. A number of agencies, foreign and national, reach out despite some hostility toward Christianity. Intertribal Oromi warfare has disrupted much work but gives opportunity to show compassion.
c) The many peoples of the southwest, bordering on Sudan, are isolated and smaller in numbers; some are nomadic. Nearly all are now engaged by evangelists and missionaries. Pray for healthy churches to be planted through pioneering work among the Aari, Bench, Bodi (5,000), Bumi (40,000), Hamer-Banna, Daasenach, Dime (15,000), Ebore (5,000), Karo (5,000), Meen, Mali (39,000), Mursi (5,000), Tarra (15,000), Tsamai (20,000) and Wata (5,000).
For an additional 10 Challenges for Prayer see Operation World book, CD-ROM, or DVD-ROM.
The Operation World book, CD-ROM, and DVD-ROM provide far more information and fuel for prayer for the people of Ethiopia.