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The Ethiopian Evangelical Lutheran Church (EELC) was formed in 1960. EELC has been associated with Swedish Mission Bibeltrogna Vänner (SMBV). The SMBV is now known as Evangelisk Luthersk Mission – Bibeltrogna Vänner [Evangelical Lutheran Mission – Bible-True Friends].
The BV disassociated from Evangeliska Fosterlandsstiftelsen (SEM) in 1911 due to conflicts over biblical interpretation and leadership. Theologically, BV has been more conservative than SEM. In terms of leadership, BV favors decentralized and low-church structures.
Bibeltrogna Vänner began its ministry in Ethiopia in 1921. Addis Ababa, Harar and Dire Dawa as well as the Arsi (Oromo) region were the first places of work.
The eminent Ethiopian coworkers during the early times included
- Araya Selassie Verreta (his sons and daugthers formed the Araya family choir)
- Kifle-Egzy Yihdeggo (father of Abeba Kifle-Egzy)
BV missionaries involved in translating and co-editing songs for the Amharic hymnal Səbhat läʼamlak:
- 1925 edition: Josef Svensson (Rev.)
- 1935 edition: Simon Röstin (Rev.)
History and ministry of Addis Ababa EELC Choirs
Details of establishment, etc.?
The Addis Ababa EELC choir sings Səbhat läʼamlak hymns to this day (see videos below).
» Follow EELC on Facebook
» Visit Addis Ababa EELC’s YouTube channel
» Visit ELM Bibeltrogna Vänner website on Ethiopia (Swedish)
published in 2020:
Full service (with liturgy)
Hjort, Bengt; Mekonnen Gerremew, and Rune Imberg. Joint Endeavour in the Work for the Gospel: The Background, Formation and Development of the Ethiopian Evangelical Lutheran Church. Part 1: The Pioneer Period 1921 – 1935. Stockholm: Books on Demand, 2022. [Read sample on Amazon.com (Kindle)]