Your Majesty

Port of Adal

Home of Imam Mahfuzh Arab Slave Dealer

Aqueduct

Ethiopia

Ancient Architecture

Lalibela

Invasion

Proselytism by Vatican and Mussolini

Susneyos

Susneyos

Castle


Introduction of Christianity into Ethiopia

The introduction of Christianity into Ethiopia took place in the beginning of the first century A.D. 34, about four months after the death and resurrection of Christ, when St. Philip baptized the Ethiopian Eunuch as he was returning from the Passover feast in Jerusalem. This history is narrated in the Acts of the Apostles 8:26-39. The history of Saint Philip the Apostle baptizing the Ethiopian Eunuch is of great significance. The Eunuch was a man of high rank in Ethiopia, the finance minister of Candace, queen of Ethiopia.
St. Philip and Eunuch
Upon his return he preached the doctrine of Christ among his countrymen. He was the first to bring the news, although he was not called an Apostle as he deserved. Eusebius speaks of him as the first fruit of the faithful in the whole world. Further at that time Saint Mathew the Apostle preached the Gospel to the Ethiopians he won some converts to the new doctrine and then left the country.(The Ethiopian Tewahedo Church, yesehaq p.13) The Eunuch baptized Queen Candace in the first century A.D and since then Ethiopia has been ruled and governed by Christians.

Western historians and writers state that Ezana who reigned in Ethiopia about A.D. 320-356 was the first African King who became Christian and made Christianity the official religion of his empire. This is purosely done to make it seem that Rome was first and this would make Ethiopia Christendom’s second state after Constantine declared Rome a Christian state, but this is not so. The declaration of the doctrine of Christ by King Ezana in the fourth century was not done as a new introduction to the people but was done by the Emperor to prove himself as the true Christian leader of the nation and to make Christianity more effective throughout the nation.


Lalibela

Abba Selama – First Bishop of Ethiopia

The Book of the Contendings of St. Tekle Haimanot and the Fetha Negast state that in the beginning of the fourth century after Christ there came to Ethiopia a certain stranger/pilgrim to Ethiopia from Jerusalem with two young men, Frumentius and Sidrakos. They were welcomed to the home of Anbaram and were received graciously. That same night the pilgrim became ill with fever and after a few days he died. The two young men grew up in the house of Anbaram and learned the Old Testament and the custom and lifestyle of Ethiopia, including the language and traditional music. Frumentius was impressed by the devotion of the Ethiopian people to their God.

One day he said to Anbaram "My Lord, I admire the life and culture of the people. You Ethiopians practice circumcision and confess the Lord Eyesus Kristos, but you do not practice Baptism, neither do you receive communion." Anbaram replied; "Our Father the Levites, brought us circumcision and the finance minister of Queen Candace, the Eunuch, brought us the faith of Christ, yet we do not have an Apostle who can administer the rite of Baptism and the Eucharist. So would you please go to Alexandria and be consecrated for this position?" Frumentius said to him, "I will obey the words, O my Lord." Then Anbaram gave him much gold and silver for his journey and gifts for the patriarch.

The Eunuch had administered the rite of Baptism and the Eucharist in the beginning of the first century after Christ but this had been discontinued after a while. Thus the people had been left without a Christian Apostle to teach them the New Testament and to administer the Sacrament and were still offering sacrifices to God in accordance to the Law of Orit, the ancient Jewish tradition. Anbaram himself was not baptized. He was simply a priest after the order of the Judaic tradition, yet he saw the salvation of the New Testament. Frumentius departed and came to Alexandria where he found out that The Patriarch Alexander was in Nicaea.

Frumentius continued his journey and arrived at the end of the council. He met with the Patriarch and told him "There is a country which has accepted Christianity without an Apostle." In turn Alexander informed the council and was given responsibility to deal with the matter. Alexander died before he could deal with the issue and was succeeded by Athanasius. Frumentius informed Athanasius about his mission.

When the new Patriarch heard the news he greatly rejoiced and immediately consecrated Frumentius and sent him back to Axum, the capital of Ethiopia. As Bishop of the Ethiopian Church Frumentius was called Abba Selama – Father of Peace. He arrived in Axum in the days of the two brother kings Abreha (Ezana) and Asbeha (Shaiazana). Frumentius first came to Anbaram and baptized him and ordained him a deacon. The following day he ordained him a priest and gave him a new name, Hezbe Kades.

He commanded him to "baptize and sanctify men" and gave him authority and permission with the understanding that he would be inferior only to Frumentius and that Anbaram would be titled Bishop. From that time Anbaram was known as bishop under the jurisdiction of Abba Selama. Upon receiving authority, Anbaram preached the Gospel Of Christ throughout the country and baptized thousands of men and women.
The Book of the Saint explains further that the people of Noba (Nubia), Saba (Sabaean), Nagran, (in South Yemen south of Ethiopia), Tigre (north of Ethiopia), Angot, Amhara, Kueta, and Zaba Guedar were baptized by Anbaram.

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