In EECMY, many evangelists and ministers are serving faithfully years after years. Some time ago the Missiology teacher at TEC, Zinabu Mekonnen was invited to Arba Minch to conduct a training session for the outreach evangelists who are serving the Church in the southernmost parts of Ethiopia.
29 evangelists came to the training. They mainly serve among the people of South Omo like Dassenech, Hamer, Tsamakko, Bunna, Erbore and others. The evangelists serve across cultural borders and it is a big challenge to adopt to the new cultures. But some of the evangelists have been serving for many years and are well adopted to the culture, speaking the local language and communicating the gospel culturally in relevant ways. It takes long time to learn the culture and language of the people of South Omo.
The majority of the evangelists are from other parts of Ehiopia, but there are also evangelists from among their own people. We hope to see more indigenous evangelists serving in South Omo.
Zinabu Mekonnen was given the topic on “Cross Cultural Evangelism” He says that “To be effective across cultural borders the evangelist must know himself and his position in Christ. He should also know the Bible, especially the different cultural and litterary contexts of the Bible. Thirdly the evangelist also need to know the worldview, customs and culture of the people they serve.”
Zinabu also drew on his own experience, and he underlines that they have to love the people and identify themselves with them. This involves taking their livestyle, eating their food and share their living conditions. The evangelist must go not only to teach, but also to learn from the people.Most of the people in South Omo have been nomads, and the evangelist have to move togheter with the people.
Now the situation in South Omo is changing as the government encourages the nomads to settle down. The government facilitate this settlement in different ways as providing irrigation for agriculture and water for their cattle. Most of the people settle down by their own will.
Zinabu concludes by encouraging everybody to pray for the evangelists serving in South Omo as they are facing many differnet challenges as they are sharing the gospel with the unreached peoples of South Omo.
Tabor Evangelical College has competent and motivated staff that serve the EECMY Church in many different ways. The staff are invited to teach and preach different places. Please contact us, if you would like some of teachers to participate at a workshop, conference or other things.
TEC offer Certificate, Diploma and Degree program in Mission, but also short term training for evangelists and others. Please contact us for further information.