Facts About Ethiopia
Following are several facts about Ethiopia that the worldwide family can celebrate:
- Ethiopia is mentioned in the Holy Bible thirty-four (34) times beginning in the second chapter of the first Book of the Bible – Genesis – describing the location of the Garden of Eden.
- History logs The Ethiopian Orthodox Church as being the first Christian church in the world based on the Apostle Phillip’s baptism of the Ethiopian Eunuch on his way home to Ethiopia after worshipping in Jerusalem. When he brought the Gospel of Christ back to his country it was accepted by Queen Candace and the rest of the country.
- The oldest Christian Bible that has been found (dating back to the 6th Century) was an illustrated and bound volume found in a Monastery in Ethiopia. It is written in the ancient language used in the Liturgy of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church – Geez.
- Despite many stories of it being in different locations across the globe, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church has quietly and consistently maintained that the original Ark of the Covenant resides in Ethiopia, presently in the city of Axum.
- The ruins of the palace of the Queen of Sheba continues to be a tourist attraction in Axum, Ethiopia. The Queen, as the Bible records, visited King Solomon in Jerusalem and bore a son with him. Their son was to become Emperor Menelik I, the second in the line of the Solomonic Dynasty of which His Imperial Majesty is the 225th monarch.
- Ethiopia was the first African nation to join the League of Nations
- The oldest known community of Jews – known as beta Israel – was found in Ethiopia.
- When Moses ran away from Egypt after killing the Egyptian slave driver, he went to Ethiopia where he married the daughter of a Priest – Jethro – who, along with Moses’ brother Aaron, were able to remind them about their religion. Jethro can therefore be considered a Rabbi, inferring that the worship of the One True God existed in Ethiopia before the time of Moses, and therefore before the time of Solomon and the Queen of Sheba.
- Ethiopia is acknowledged as the only country in the world that has never been colonized by a foreign power. The country was invaded by the Italians under Mussolini who occupied from 1936 to 1941 but were ousted based on continuous guerilla warfare actions against the invaders by the resolute Ethiopian people, and helped in the final push by the British and South Afriican troops.
- In 2001 Anthropologists in the Hadar region find human remains that were over 5 million years old – 2 million years older than Lucy who was found in decades before.
- Ethiopian distance runner Haile Gebre Selassie set a world record for the marathon in Berlin in 2008, and won Olympic gold medals twice in 1996 and 2000 in the 10,000 meters. Every day, he ran 6 miles (10 km) to school and back as a child. Ethiopians continue to break records and create excitement in long distance races.