Quite a while ago now, I read a web page about Christchurch, and was startled to read the following small story, written about something that happened to a NZ man working in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Read it, and you will be surprised too !
The IFA People…. After reading this, I made some investigations on the web, and was able to track down Frank. He is based in Sweden, and works for a charitable organisation called “Industries for Africa” or IFA or IFAF. Here is a picture of Frank.
Frank is a Project Engineer for IFA and makes regular trips to Africa.
I talked with Frank on the phone several times, explaining how good I thought his story was, and one time, I awoke him too early in the morning, when he was in Tangier. Tangier is the main port of entry to North Africa from Europe. Frank told me, as he rubbed his eyes that he had been held up there in Tangier for about a week, awaiting his load of used lathes and machines to be cleared by the Moroccan customs. He was really bored as hell. There was some standoff as the customs men were after baksheesh. His destination was somewhere in West Africa, I forget exactly where, but probably near Nigeria. They were driving a small convoy of heavily loaded trucks, and I did not envy their rough journey ahead.
Anyway, my talks with Frank were allowing me to get closer to information about the church, and the “pastor” that had talked to Frank. I was doing all this as I really wanted to get some publicity about this out to the streets of Christchurch !
The aim being to make the CPT Anglicans look more foolish and more self serving than they already appeared to be !
Andrea is one of the two leaders of IFA and was conveniently in Addis when Frank was in Tangier. I called her and encouraged her to go and do some simple investigating for me. She was able to do this, but unfortunately was not able to track down the pastor. This is not surprising, as that was a long shot anyway. But, here are the photos she took.
The Church in Addis…. This is the street corner of the nearby main road. The church is down the side road from here, as indicated by the sign. The church is called “Ethiopian Full Gospel Believers’ Church”. Notice how they have the correct plural punctuation of “Believers” in the title. However, this is let down by the incorrect spelling of Believer. Never mind. English is only their second language.
Above: The church on the right, as you can tell by the cross, and the bread shop with the small “hole” is across the corner. You can see people going to get the bread, just as Frank did in early 2012 or late 2011.
Above.. A peek inside the church doorway. The drying umbrella tells us it has just rained.
As you can see, the church is made from corrugated iron. These people are devout and resourceful. They will do whatever they can to make their church, even though they are not rich. When you think about it, this is not so different from what the early settlers did to build the Cathedrals in Christchurch, is it ? Ethiopia is an ancient Christian nation, and has never been colonised. I think the style of Christianity comes directly from Israel or Rome, not via Western Europe. It is similar to how the Greek and Russians worship in their “orthodox” style. In common with many African nations though, there are many “revival” type churches sprouting up everywhere. I think this church is one of these.
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