Last night I spent some time researching some different things about Ethiopia such as the language, culture, and church history. I've determined that this is something that I need to do a whole lot more of before I leave. I would like to get a head start on learning the language, if only to know the common greetings and questions. This seems as though it's going to be a lot harder that I had originally though... but doable. 

As far as the culture and church history goes, there is a lot I have to learn. I knew that the country of Ethiopia is about 50% Christian, so I though that I would be entering a pretty safe environment. But it turns out that this per cent is predominantly composed of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church which is actuality hostile to the evangelical church in Ethiopia. Here's a link to an article documenting such hostility published by the CIC (Christians in Crisis). From what I've read the relationship between the churches seems a lot like the relationship between the Pharisaical Jews and the early church in the New Testament times. This is both exciting and scary considering there might be persecution which means that God is working and the Christians are doing something right. Besides, persecution is one of God’s many promises to us. It’s to be expected if where doing things right.

I will definitely keep up my research. It’s good to have a better understanding to the environment that I will be entering. Plus I've been finding some cool things like this Church. It is a monolithic building, which means that it is carved out of a single rock.

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The Church of St. George in Lalibela, Ethiopia
Kim Diebolt
6/9/2009

Hey Steve, this is pretty cool, I didn't know that about Ethiopia either. And that church is amazing, I was just looking at more info on it and the town it's in. It's almost hard to believe they cut and carved so many churches out of solid rock! Will you be able to see those churches? If so that would be a site to see. Well you are in my prayer and keep the updates coming.

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