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Lori on Ethiopia


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Lori's dentist son went on a trip to Ethiopia to provide dental care to impoverished areas. She concluded with this sanctimonious bit of righteousness:

lorialexander.blogspot.com/2013/12/finally-out-of-pain.html

Oh, the things we take for granted. Dentists, for instance. We can easily go to the dentist and get our teeth fixed. Water. We go to our faucet and get clean water to drink.

However, the most valuable thing of all that we have is Jesus. He is readily available to all. With Him, we have freedom from sin, eternal life, saved from the wrath to come, hope, a future, etc. Even though these Ethiopians are extremely poor, as soon as they meet Jesus, they are rich. But my God shall supply all your need, according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus. {Philippians 4:19}

So, yes, Steven filled an urgent need in Ethiopia but he also went to share the love of Jesus with these people. Teeth may only last a lifetime, but Jesus lasts forever.

I'm guessing that Lori is not aware that Ethiopia was one of the first countries to adopt Christianity as the state religion, and Christians make up 62.8% of the population.

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Lori's dentist son went on a trip to Ethiopia to provide dental care to impoverished areas. She concluded with this sanctimonious bit of righteousness:

lorialexander.blogspot.com/2013/12/finally-out-of-pain.html

I'm guessing that Lori is not aware that Ethiopia was one of the first countries to adopt Christianity as the state religion, and Christians make up 62.8% of the population.

Of course she's not. That would require her to...well, think. Plus, they're the wrong kind, you know, us heathens with icons and such.

The ignorance, it burns.

We had several Ethiopian families that came to our Orthodox church years ago, in Indianapolis, before they had a priest and their own parish. Once for Nativity they brought the drums and sang after the Liturgy, it was phenomenal. Not to mention the food (lord have mercy I love Ethiopian food).

ETA: Ethiopian liturgies last 3+ hours. Hundreds of people stand outside the church all that time. None of these namby-pamby fundies would make it through the first half hour.

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I hope this is just Lori's twist on it and Stephen really didn't go distributing Bibles while he was providing dental care.

I think what he did was great, ending people's pain is a wonderful thing to do. But taking advantage of their desperate state to shove a Bible at them. .. not so great.

I kind of like Stephen. . . he went to a university with gay (!) professors and now lives as far as possible from Lori (upstate NY, I believe). So I am going to imagine the conversation went like this:

Stephen: Mom, I just got back from Ethiopia where I was able to help a lot of people.

Lori: You mean you showed them the light of Jesus?

Stephen: Well, no, I pulled a lot of teeth and ended some really bad infections that could have caused cardiac damage. ..

Lori: You did share Jesus with them, too, didn't you? I imagine people in Africa have never heard of Jesus, right? Till you came along? [shouts submissively] Ken, listen to this! Stephen was able to share Jesus with thousands of people!

[to Stephen] You must have felt really good about that, honey!

Stephen: Huh? Yeah, sure, mom.

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I would never presume to go to a country and recruit for Jesus! I travel because I want to see new places!

That's how most people r unless its a mission trip.

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I hope this is just Lori's twist on it and Stephen really didn't go distributing Bibles while he was providing dental care.

I think what he did was great, ending people's pain is a wonderful thing to do. But taking advantage of their desperate state to shove a Bible at them. .. not so great.

I kind of like Stephen. . . he went to a university with gay (!) professors and now lives as far as possible from Lori (upstate NY, I believe). So I am going to imagine the conversation went like this:

Stephen: Mom, I just got back from Ethiopia where I was able to help a lot of people.

Lori: You mean you showed them the light of Jesus?

Stephen: Well, no, I pulled a lot of teeth and ended some really bad infections that could have caused cardiac damage. ..

Lori: You did share Jesus with them, too, didn't you? I imagine people in Africa have never heard of Jesus, right? Till you came along? [shouts submissively] Ken, listen to this! Stephen was able to share Jesus with thousands of people!

[to Stephen] You must have felt really good about that, honey!

Stephen: Huh? Yeah, sure, mom.

I hope so too. Stephen might end up being the one kid to leave the fundie lite lifestyle.

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But! Evangelicals don't consider Orthodox to be actually Christian. Or at least, not Christian enough. Therefore, they still need missionaries. That is how it works, you know. :roll:

Even many Ethiopian evangelicals themselves are quite negative towards the Orthodox faith. And unfortunately with Orthodox being the majority with political power to boot and evangelical being a tiny, tiny minority, tensions tend to lead to evangelicals suffering (including being jailed and having their churches destroyed), perpetuating their negative views of the Orthodox.

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But! Evangelicals don't consider Orthodox to be actually Christian. Or at least, not Christian enough. Therefore, they still need missionaries. That is how it works, you know. :roll:

Even many Ethiopian evangelicals themselves are quite negative towards the Orthodox faith. And unfortunately with Orthodox being the majority with political power to boot and evangelical being a tiny, tiny minority, tensions tend to lead to evangelicals suffering (including being jailed and having their churches destroyed), perpetuating their negative views of the Orthodox.

Evangelicals don't understand the level of disgust their activities are viewed with in Orthodox Christian countries. :evil-eye: Evangelicals are looked upon as loathsome proselytizers, who only offer help in order to "poach" native Christians. It's not just in Ethiopia. Greece was flooded with British missionaries after the war of independence in 1821, because independence was seen as a sign from God that the time had come to go win people over from the "relic church" to a "true practice" of Christianity. Not much has changed in the ensuing 200 years. If there is an area of the world that is in crisis that has a native Orthodox or Catholic population, it is almost always targeted by Protestant missionaries trying to "bring them Jesus". Russia, Romania, Ethiopia, Haiti....they are seen as mission opportunities, not simply people who need medical care, infrastructure, help with remodeling governance, etc.

The term I grew up hearing in reference to evangelical aid was "Protestant wankery". ;)

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Despite being raised by assholes, young Stephen sounds like a giving, generous and decent man. I'm so happy he was able to use his skills and talents to help others. Good for him. I hope he continues to do this good work.

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But! Evangelicals don't consider Orthodox to be actually Christian. Or at least, not Christian enough. Therefore, they still need missionaries. That is how it works, you know. :roll:

Even many Ethiopian evangelicals themselves are quite negative towards the Orthodox faith. And unfortunately with Orthodox being the majority with political power to boot and evangelical being a tiny, tiny minority, tensions tend to lead to evangelicals suffering (including being jailed and having their churches destroyed), perpetuating their negative views of the Orthodox.

Huh? I really don't quite get what you are trying to say here.

Ethiopia has had a long Christian heritage. Much longer than Europe and certainly very much longer than the USA.

Ethiopian Coptic (I'd not call it Orthodox but that is hair splitting) Christianity dates back to the Ist Century AD. Ethiopia has long been resistant to white missionaries, because their Ethiopian ancestors were "Christian" when the white missionary's ancestors were still painting themselves with woad.

Yeah, some white "evangelicals" have made inroads into Ethiopia and been slapped down. And yes, some Evangelical Missionaries in Ethiopia have had their tenure cut short because they did not respect a religious tradition that was older than their pontifications. Why are they trying to convert Ethiopian Christians when they could be harassing and converting the Ethiopian minority - Muslims, Jews and other religions? Not that I think they should.

"Evangelical Christians" are still trying to force their particular type of Christianity everywhere. And claim persecution when they are told to F the F off.

Meh, some people want to evangelize, convert, and suffer for their faith in a way that I will never understand. I reserve the right to tell them to fuck off.

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Ethiopian Coptic (I'd not call it Orthodox but that is hair splitting)

You're right, Coptic is more accurate. :embarrassed: They tend to refer to themselves as "Orthodox" in my area when asked what kind of Christians they are, as do Egyptian Copts, so I sometimes mix up the terms.

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Palimpset, I was referring to ethiopian evangelicals, not evangelical missionaries. I married an Ethiopian evangelical, and thus got to hear all about it from that perspective. I wasnt justifying the attitude, just pointing out why evangelicals consider most of Ethiopia "unreached"

I'm well aware of the long Christian history in Ethiopia. One of many points of contention in my marriage, as he doesnt see Catholic, orthodox, or coptic as Christian and I thought that was utterly ridiculous.

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Evangelicals attempts to convert Coptic, Catholic and Orthodox Christians in other countries is one of the things I find most offensive about the fundy lite world. When I worked at a fundy lite school, one church was taking a group to Mexico and was very proud of being the first of their particular denomination to go. They were actually looking to convert former Catholics from the other evangelical denominations that got to them first. It is all utterly absurd.

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Palimpset, I was referring to ethiopian evangelicals, not evangelical missionaries. I married an Ethiopian evangelical, and thus got to hear all about it from that perspective. I wasnt justifying the attitude, just pointing out why evangelicals consider most of Ethiopia "unreached"

I'm well aware of the long Christian history in Ethiopia. One of many points of contention in my marriage, as he doesnt see Catholic, orthodox, or coptic as Christian and I thought that was utterly ridiculous.

Ah, that is a lot clearer. Thanks, and my apologies for my knee-jerk reaction.

Not to be too nosy, but does your Evangelical husband identify with any denomination? When I lived in Ethiopia (a very long time ago when Haile Selassie was still Emperor) there was one largish Ethiopian Evangelical Church, Mekane Yesus. I think it was Lutheran and had been well established for about 100 years. Other than that, I can think of a very few small Baptist or Presbyterian churches. Of course, there were a lot of foreign Missions, but they tended to keep evangelizing very low key. They were only allowed in for medical, agricultural and educational etc. purposes, and would have been kicked out if they did much obvious proselytizing back then. There was nothing like a John Shrader type of White American evangelizing to the "unreached."

I can easily believe that Ethiopian Evangelicals are persecuted in Ethiopia today.

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No problem. :)

For the life of me I can't remember the name of his denomination. I remember him talking about Mekane Yesus. His denomination is another one, maybe they are more in the South? He explained to me which Ethiopian denominations were related to which but the names escape me now. I think most denominations we know now have churches in Ethiopia. In his town there were several mainstream denominations but Adventists and Jehovah's Witnesses had found their way there too by that point. And then the pentecostal churches are a whole 'nother layer of religious tension.

AFAIK, all the missionaries there have to come in on some other basis and can get in trouble for actually proseletizing.

Some of them are doing amazing work. One is developing accessible maternity care and overall women's health programs in areas where there has never been anything like that. But some of the others I met there were certifiably cray-cray. :(

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