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Pentecostal and Charismatic Churches in Ethiopia

A selection of the most important pentecostal and charismatic churches and denominations in Ethiopia

Apostolic Church of Ethiopia (የኢትዮጵያ ሐዋርያዊት ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Oneness church, whose founder and present leader (Teklemariam Gezahegne) was one of the evangelists of the early student movement. This church is not recognized by any other church in Ethiopia and operates outside all Christian networks in the country. Also called by its Ethiopian name "Hawariyat Church", it claims a membership of 1-2 Mio. Until recently it was affiliated with the United Pentecostal Church (USA).
Assemblies of God (ኢትዮጵያ ጉባኤ እግዚአብሔር ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
The Assemblies of God were formally established in Ethiopia toward the end of the 1990s (official registration 1997). Prior to that the missionaries from the Assemblies of God worked in different cooperation initiatives with other churches.
Bible Army Church (የመጽሐፍ ቅዱስ ሠራዊት ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Fairly young church with "faith movement" theology. Up until recently named "Faith Army Church".
Emmanuel United Church (እማኑኤል ህብረት ቤተክርስቲያን)
Smaller church that has its origins in different groups of charismatic youths in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. Its beginnings and denominational head quarters lie in Nazareth (about 30 km south-east of Addis Ababa).
Emmanuel Baptist Church (እማኑኤል መጠመቃውያን ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Largely charismatic baptist church, originally founded by American missionaries.
Ethiopian Evangelical Praise Church (የኢትዮጵያ ወንጌላዊት ምስጋና ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Often called Misgana Church, this church has its roots in underground prayer groups in the 1980s. The denomination has over 500 churches in Ethiopia. Its senior pastor also runs an NGO.
Ethiopian Gennet Church (የኢትዮጵያ ገነት ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Based on the work of Finnish Pentecostal missionaries (Free Finnish Foreign Mission), this church became independent in 1977.
Ethiopian Gospel Deliverance Church (የኢትዮጵያ ወንጌላዊት አርነት ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Fairly early split (1974) from the Full Gospel Believer's Church over the issue of "Deliverance". Meanwhile it is well accepted by the other churches, organizationally as well as doctrinally.
Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus (የኢትዮጵያ ወንጌላዊት ቤተ ክርስቲያን መካነ ኢየሱስ)
Lutheran Church, established 1959 as the result of different Lutheran missions in Ethiopia. Charismatic worship and theology play a large role in this church, albeit with considerable local differences in intensity.
Ethiopian Heywet Birhan Church (የኢትዮጵያ ሕይወት ብርሃን ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Based on the work of Swedis Pentecostal missionaries (Swedish Philadelphia Church Mission), it was established as an independent church in 1978.
Ethiopian Kale Heywet Church (ቃለ ሕይወት ወንጌላዊት ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
This church, originating in the work of the Sudan Interior Mission (SIM), is the largest Protestant church in Ethiopia. Despite initial opposition by dispensationalist missionaries, this church is largely charismatic today.
Evangelical Maranata Church (የኢትዮጵያ ወንጌላዊት ማራናታ የቤተ ክርስቲያን ኀብረት)
Founded in 1994 by a formerly Baptist minister, this is a smaller church with about 10,000 members nationwide.
Full Gospel Believer's Church (ሙሉ ወንጌል አማኞች ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Large classical Pentecostal Church (more than 500,000 members), that was founded by the Ethiopian student movement in 1967 and sees itself as the first independent Pentecostal church in Ethiopia. It is often called by its Amharic name (Mulu Wongel).
Harvest Church of God (መከር የእግዚአብሔር ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Founded by the first pastor of the Gennet Church in 1988. It is affiliated with the International Church of God and has 15-20,000 members.
Meserete Kristos Church (መሠረት ክርስቶስ ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Originating in the work of Mennonite missionaries, this church was in contact with the Pentecostal movement very early on, when some of the student movement became members here. In worship and theology Meserete Kristos is a charismatich church.
Winners' Temple (እሸናፊ መቅደስ ቤተ ክርስቲያን)
Smaller faith movement church with contacts to the Nigerian Faith Tabernacle (Winners' Temple).
Contributed by:

Jörg Haustein

Cambridge, UK
University of Cambridge
last modified 2010-05-04 14:28