Rodén, Karl Gustaf (Rev)

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Life and ministry

Karl Gustaf Rodén lived from 1860-1943.

He was married to Emelie Rodén (née Nilsson); the couple arrived in Imkullu (Massawa) in 1884. They served with SEM in

  • Massawa (1884-86),
  • Arkiko (1887-88),
  • and in Geleb for more than two decades (1889-1911, 1913-20)

Rev. Rodén translated numerous hymns into Tigre.

Songs in hymn books


Därus Ṣəyon, 1902

  • 30 of the 43 hymns were translated by Rodén

Därus Ṣəyon, 1913

  • 106 of the 185 hymns were translated by Rodén

Därus Ṣəyon, 1931

  • 116 of the 310 hymns werde translated by Rodén


Emelie & Karl Gustaf Rodén (Rev)
(adapted from a photograph at the SEM Archives)

Further reading

Selected Sources

Rodén, Karl Gustaf & Emelie. Several letters to SEM and articles in the mission’s journal (Missions-Tidning). [Check SEM Archives online]

Rodén, Karl Gustaf [et al.], tr. Il Nuovo Testamento in Tigrè [The New Testament in Tigrean language]. Asmara: Swedish Mission Press, 1902.

—. Le Tribù dei Mensa: Storia, Legge e Costumi [The Mensa Tribe: History, Law and Customs]; vol. A: Tigré text; vol. B: Italian translation. Asmara: Swedish Mission Press; Stockholm: EFS, 1913.


Arén, Gustav. Evangelical Pioneers in Ethiopia: Origins of the Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus. Stockholm: EFS; Addis Ababa: The Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus, 1978. [esp. p. 353-57]

Hylander, Nils. Morgonljus: Femtioårigt missionsarbete på natthöljd jord, 1865–1916 [Morning Light: Fifty Years of Missionary Work on Night-Shrouded Land, 1865–1916]. Stockholm: EFS, 1917. [esp. p. 87–88, 94, 105]

Lundström, Karl Johan, edited by Ezra Gebremedhin. Kenisha: The Roots and Development of The Evangelical Church of Eritrea (EC) 1866-1935. Trenton, NJ; etc.: The Red Sea Press, 2011. [see index, p. 514]

Senai W. Andemariam. “The Story of the Translation of the Bible into Tǝgre”, ITYOP̣IS 2 (2012), 62-88. [Online version]