“JIHAD” – ETOC vs Evangelism: Mine is Right, Yours Wrong?
The reason for this blurb is the four-part video that I have recently watched on http://www.ethiotube.net regarding the war between the Protestant Pastor Dawit and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. For that matter I have chosen to be more secular than anything else as an educator not just to entertain certain illusions. One truth that needs to be clear to anybody is that Religious Radicalism is not any different from poison. It is one’s responsibility to fight such poison in any cross-road of our progress as Global citizens.
As I occasionally do, in addition to publishing my own articles, I share some of the view points about good and bad things the affect our societies/people – the Ethiopian Communities in the Diaspora and also the people of Ethiopia at large.
Recently, I have been reading on the blogosphere about the internal rift within the Protestant Church goers in North America, London etc, fighting for group/individual dominance and influence in relation to finances and property. This has been going on within the Ethiopian Orthodox Church too with most recent conflict taking place in the London St Marry Ethiopian Tewahido Orthodox Church (ETOC). These internal conflicts are additional shake-ups on top of Woyane’s numerous attempts to control the Diaspora religious groups and churches as they have already effectively used the Ethiopian Tewahido Orthodox Church back in Ethiopia. The regime, of course, uses a another pastor by the name of Daniel who is like a messenger from God re-christening everyone thrown into Kaliti prison (no matter whether a Moslem or Christian) so that Melese Zenawi can pardon the inmates later given Pastor Daniel’s blessing even when they haven’t committed any crime.
The internal conflicts have continued to erode the unity of the people as Ethiopian communities for a long time now. While this is a gruesome occurrence on its own, some circles in the so called Protestant or Evangelical pastors have continuously campaigning against the Ethiopian ETOC for supremacy, by attacking the Church’s traditions and cannons in their sermons. The atrocious acts of these Pastors have been levelled by ETOC priest as ‘JIHAD.’ These attacks, in their essence have as their basis, ridiculing the doctrine of ETOC by belittling the cannons of the Orthodox Church and its traditions. I am of the belief that it is individual’s (group’s) right to choose their religion and/or faith, but no one has God given authority to criticise other’s religion in a public setting to promote theirs.
To see the war footing that the two Christian denominations have taken, I would suggest you to watch a four part recent video where the two religious sects are playing tit-for-tat declared war against each other with the Protestant Pastor Dawit playing the attack in a playful (theatrical) and aggressive way, of course this earning him a round of applause from his followers with thousands of ‘AMEN’s.
A point to make here is that Pastor Dawit forgot that the preaching of the words of Jesus doesn’t require a $1000 woollen suit, a 1000-watt speakers and a hall with special colour effect etc. Shall we say that it doesn’t require Kitfo-fed fat bellies either? The bottom line is that Pastor Dawit should ask himself what value his teaching is adding to the lives and productivity of Ethiopians!
In my humble opinion the so called Pastor Dawit sermons are despicable and distasteful, attacking another religion in such a way that he did. Who is this Pastor to behave in such a hysterical way to go this far?
There are questions one asks those people, the likes of Pastor Dawit:
• Who has a morally high ground to criticise other religious doctrines in a public setting creating public anger? Is this a good way of getting attention and be famous? Not quite!!!
• Who does have the key to the door of Heaven, the likes of Pastor Daniel who came to the scene of Protestantism as merchants in the trade?
• Is it not the case that most of today’s Ethiopian Christians’ cultural heritage as it has been case associated with the ETOC, whether we like it or not?
• Is it not true that most of those nation-wide holidays such as Inkutatash, Maskal/ Damara, Timket, etc and also a lot of cultural songs/shows are bonded to the ETOC? Are those re-born Ethiopian Christians going to ignore these traditions!! I think those pastor creatures better appreciate Ethiopia’s unique religious history and groups than trade with just ‘imports’. They can equally make money if they trade with ‘Exports’ too! This is what the Western nations appreciate the most but not the preaching of our home-grown pastors!
If one wants to criticise the Protestant religion and those pastors in particular, one can find numerous notorious rituals ranging from the obvious corrupt practices, paedophile turned pastors, abuse of trust etc to inhumane rituals practiced during Sunday Masses and during the so called fellowship conferences. If one really believes in heavenly God it may not be appropriate to go thus far.
To conclude, religious radicalism isn’t any different from a poison and as such must be stopped before it goes too far and tarnishes the fabric of our society!!
Happy New Year 2011!!
Here is the link for your own judgement (It has generated so many responses in its first day of publishing):