Saturday, January 2, 2021

Updated Country Profile - Ethiopia

Click here to access the updated Reaching the Nations country profile for Ethiopia. The Church in Ethiopia experienced slow growth in the 1990s and for most of the 2000s, and again since the mid-2010s. There was a five-year period from the late 2000s to mid-2010s when the Church experienced rapid membership growth and the organization of new congregations. However, these efforts have since dramatically reversed due to problems with local leadership development and disruptions to the continuity of full-time missionary outreach. Ethiopia ranks among the least reached countries of the world by Latter-day Saints among countries with populations of at least 100 million people. In contrast, most missionary-minded Christian groups report steady growth rates that range from moderate to rapid.

See below for the Future Prospects section of this article:

President Hinckley visited members of the Church from Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Tanzania, and Uganda in Nairobi, Kenya in February 1998 and predicted that the Church would grow in Kenya and surrounding countries. He stated, “Here there are now hundreds, there will be thousands, there will be tens of thousands. This gospel is true; it will spread over the earth."

In 2020, this prediction had yet to be fully realized. The small size of the Church in Ethiopia today comes as the result of the large, rapidly growing population of Ethiopia that has been highly underserved as a result of few missionaries assigned to the country, the relatively short time in which the Church has operated in the country, modest membership growth, and stagnant congregational growth that has persisted for more than a decade. The newly organized Ethiopia Addis Ababa Mission was desperately needed given Ethiopia’s large population, high potential for self-sustaining church growth if consistent outreach is extended, long distance from prior mission headquarters, and few mission resources devoted to the country. However, the outlook for growth appears mediocre in the near-term, as the mission will likely utilize its resources to primary strengthen existing membership and leadership and develop more effective teaching approaches, including more formalized Amharic language study for foreign missionaries. More significant growth in the medium term appears likely once there are sustained increases in the number of active members in the three Church centers in the country.


John Pack Lambert said...

Only a minority of those in Ethiopia speak Amheric. More speak Oromo, and due to historical and cultural issues the Oromo overall will probably be more receptive to the gospel. If we want to see growth of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saibts in Ethiopia we should prepare for outreach to the Oromo and other marginalized groups that do not speak Amheric. If we had focused outreach in Nigeia on the ethnic groups in power over the country we would have only a few branches there too.

Eduardo said...

Each prophet has his work to do. So does each member. "Where ere thou art, do thy part."

Oromo speakers has been part of the ethnic tensions recently.

Does Tigray up north speak more Tigrinyan, like Eritrea? That would make sense.