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Unique Ethiopia

Posted by addisethiopia on October 21, 2010



For many people around the world, mentioning Ethiopia brings to mind its devastating 1984 famine. The specter of the disaster haunts the country’s international image and still hurts the growth of its fledgling tourism industry.

But here’s the reality that awaits those few adventurous visitors who do make the trip: A high plateau of lush, green hills that’s more like Scotland than the desert; decadent nightlife in Addis Ababa; and historic sites like the island monasteries of Lake Tana and Lalibela, a remarkable complex of 12th-century churches.

In addition, Ethiopia’s wildlife parks are teeming with game, but unlike Kenya, where packs of tourists compete for a glimpse of lions, here you might have the animals all to yourself.

Traveling in Ethiopia, however, can be uniquely disorienting. Ethiopians insist on doing things their own way. They have their own calendar – with 13 months; their own year – it’s currently 2003; and their own time – 6 a.m. is their midnight. The national language, Amharic, has Semitic roots, like Arabic and Hebrew, and a unique alphabet. (Rest assured, English is widely spoken.) Roughly two-thirds of the people are Ethiopian Orthodox – a creed with its own rites, different from those of the Russian or Serbian Orthodox churches – while a third is Muslim.

A trip to Ethiopia, then, is less like a sojourn in Africa than a visit to some far-flung island, where everything is strange and compelling.

You’ll need a couple of weeks to even begin to do justice to this sprawling country – bordered on the north by Sudan, on the south by Kenya and Somalia and on the east by Djibouti and Eritrea, which gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993 after a 30-year guerrilla war.

Roads are generally poor, and it can take long hours or even days to travel several hundred miles overland – particularly in the April-September rainy season. Luckily, Ethiopian Airlines – widely considered Africa’s premier carrier – operates flights from the capital, Addis, to the main must-see sites, including Lalibela.

Addis is a sprawling city of congested thoroughfares and hidden residential neighborhoods with narrow streets that dissolve into thick mud every time it rains, and it can seem a dismal place to start an Ethiopian sojourn. But resist the temptation to flee and the city will open to you, revealing scores of cute cafes, hot nightspots, chill lounges and gourmet restaurants.

Top suggestions include Eyoha or Fasika national restaurants, where remarkably athletic dancers showcase the country’s unique shoulder-shaking traditional dance styles as diners tuck into heaping plates full of local delicacies.

Ethiopian cuisine, which is heavy on sauces and served on spongy crepe-like bread called injera, leaves no one indifferent. You either love it or you hate it. Love it, and you can eat like a king, splurging on multi-dish meals of wot, a sauce of goat or lamb, and kifto, marinated raw meat. Made from an Ethiopian grain called tef, injera is eaten at every meal and also serves as cutlery, used to scoop up the juicy sauces.

Hate it, and you stand a good chance of shedding some serious weight. Besides a dozen top-notch places in Addis, restaurants serving foreign cuisine are few and far between. Order the spaghetti marinara in some provincial town, like I did, and you might find yourself using scraps of injera to scoop up earthworm-sized bits of cold pasta drenched in what appeared to be ketchup.

But there is some decent Italian food to be had if you know where to go. Indeed, the best foreign cuisine in Ethiopia is a result of Italy’s brief occupation of the country in the 1930s. Try Castelli, an Addis institution that has been serving up an antipasti buffet and fresh pasta for generations. Another option is the Ristorante da Bruno, which has won well-deserved acclaimed for its wood-fired pizzas.

Another legacy of the Italian presence are the coffee houses that serve up strong espressos and macchiatos. At Tomoca, you can get vacuum-packed bags of Ethiopian grown beans roasted to perfection in oversized colonial-era machines.

Vegetarians be warned: Ethiopian Orthodox adherents normally go vegetarian twice a week, on Wednesdays and Fridays, and fast for the 56 days preceding Ethiopian Orthodox Easter. But for the month after Easter, so-called “fasting foods,” or meat- and dairy-free dishes, are scarce.

For all-night dancing, try Club Platinum or the Gaslight, at the Sheraton hotel, where the mix of Ethiopian and R&B beats is infectious. Just be aware that at both establishments, as in other clubs across Ethiopia, most of the women on the dance floor are prostitutes.

Addis has the best shopping in the country, with a wide range of regional specialty products and styles. Try the area around Piassa for the heavy silver disc earrings from the northern Tigray region and Persian Gulf-inspired necklaces in oversized beads of silver and resin – all sold by the gram.

After a few action-packed days in Addis, you’ll be ready to hit the road.

Most visitors head north to visit Ethiopia’s tourist triumvirate – Bahir Dar, Aksum and Lalibela, the crown jewel. Ethiopian Airlines sells multi-leg tickets from Addis with stops at each site.

A winding complex of 11 churches cut out of the rust-red granite tucked into a wind-swept moonscape, Lalibela is frankly astounding. Legend claims it’s the work of angels but in reality the complex was commissioned by the powerful 12th-century King Lalibela and picked out of the rock with hammers and chisels over decades.

Continue reading…




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The Foxy Young Ethiopian Chick & The Old Fox

Posted by addisethiopia on October 19, 2010

One of the most prolific Frankfurt entrepreneurs, and owner of the famous Henninger brewery, who was married to an Ethiopian model, died at the age of 90. Mr Schubert and his wife are owners of a foundation which gives one of Germany’s most important private environmental awards, worth 100,000 €.

Meharit Kifle, the second wife, is 60 years younger than Mr Schubert.

Bruno H. Schubert died yesterday at his home in Frankfurt. Next Monday, 25 October, he would have turned 91 years old.

R.I.P Bruno


Posted in Ethiopia, Life | Tagged: , , , | 5 Comments »

Enqutatash is Ethiopian New Year

Posted by addisethiopia on September 1, 2010

Enqutatash, Enquan Metash, Babeboch Mehal…Enfineshnesh!

Ethiopian New Year is typically different and unique in the World. Unlike the others, the Ethiopian New Year is closely associated with the nature’s calendar, i.e. phenology of plants.

Enqutatash”, meaning “gift of jewels”, is celebrated each year on September 11 or “Meskerem” 1 according to the Ethiopian Calendar, that fits well with the flowering season of most herbaceous species. Species diversity (richness) and abundance has a direct link to the Ethiopian New Year celebration. Almost all of the species with high social and cultural value are either endemic or indigenous to Ethiopia. We present here the most widely known cultural practices on the Ethiopian New Year using biological resources such as ornamentals, food, drinks and ecosystem services.

The brightly yellow-colored flowers of “Adey Abeba” (Bidens pilosa) are parts and parcels of the New Year celebration in the country. On this New Year, floors of each house in Ethiopia are decorated with fresh grasses, sedges and the deep yellow colored flowers of Adey Abeba.

Other plant species used include bread wheat (Triticum aestivum) for making the traditional bread called “Difo Dabo”, Sorghum (Sorghum bicolor) for “Fendisha”, which is a roasted sorghum used during coffee ceremony, Coffee (Coffea arabica) for drinking and also for its excellent aroma, “Teff” (Eragrostis teff) for making “Injera” and others.

The locally made alcohol called “Tella” is also prepared from different types of cereals including maize (Zea maiz), barley (Hordeum vulgarae), sorghum and Gesho (Rhamnus prinoides). Besides, animals are among the major parts of the New Year celebration. Hen used for making “Doro Wot”, cattle (mostly bulls) for preparing the different types of meat sauces, etc. Other products of biodiversity such as milk, butter, cheese, etc. are also among the most important ingredients in celebrating the New Year.

Micro-organisms also play a significant role in this celebration. To mention only few, the excellent taste of “Difo Dabo” (Bread) and “ergo” (yoghurt ) are the direct contributions of microorganisms. In general, many different types of plants, animals and microorganisms are directly linked to the Ethiopian New Year. It has to be noted that the above lists are much far from complete.

The eagerly awaited Ethiopian New Year is most remembered for the beautiful celebration decorated with flowers as well as for the diverse food types. Ethiopia is among the most diverse countries both biologically and culturally. This diversity has high economic and social value and therefore should be conserved.

Happy 2003!


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Wonderful Ethiopians

Posted by addisethiopia on August 2, 2010

Abune Petros

A very unique and remarkable life history of martyr bishop Abune Petros who became martyr on the 29 th of July 1936, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in the struggle against colonialism and oppression.

Abune Petros was born 1882 in a farmer family in the city of Fiche, which is situated north of Addis Ababa. He got the baptismal name Hailemariam that means power of Maria. As the custom of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church (EOC) tradition he got a special bishop name, that is PETROS with the Ethiopia title for a bishop which is ABUNE. As a young boy Abune Petros was known as clever, helpful and humble disciple in the city and the church in Fiche.

He chose early to study the EOC diakon and priest education. At the age of 24 he took the EOC oath and became a monk. He grew up and became a principled and well-known teacher around the monasteries in Fiche and Wolamo area. In 1918 he was assigned by the EOC as he teacher and priest for the Debre-Menkrat monastery church in the region of Wolamo. Abune Petros continued to teach there when in 1924 he was assigned as the main teacher for the well-known island monastery-church of Mary, which is situated inside Lake Zewai in southern part of Ethiopia. He was well known for his teaching and preaching to the people around the region to seek first the kingdom of God: “To put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.” (Colossians 3:12).

His teachings and preaching were very popular and insightful to the people in the area and the disciples he teaches in the Monastery. In 1928 in connection with the nomination pf Ethiopia bishops in the St.Marks Monastery in Alexandria, he was nominated to one of four bishops of Ethiopia, with the title and name ABUNE PETROS.

Abune Petros was nominated as bishop of the central and eastern part of Ethiopia. Half of his time he stayed in the City of Dessie and the surrounding monasteries, while he rest of his time he spent visiting and teaching in he monasteries around the Wereilu region. To help him in the administration of the churches and monasteries in the two regions, two priests were assigned to him one from each region. He continued to preach the gospel and teach in the churches. He was liked by many for his teaching and exhortation to stand-up for the belief, the truth and follow the example of our lord Jesus Christ: “For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him but also to suffer for His sake.” (Phillippians 1:29). As we read further we will see that Abune Petros exemplified this with his life.

When Italy with the leadership of fascist Mussolini’s army invaded Ethiopia in 1932, Abune Peteros followed with Emperor Haile Selassie and the Ethiopian defence forces to the northern front. He helped the wounded, prayed and consecrated the dead and preached the Gospel. During that time he saw the undiscerning terror and violence of the invading army: He saw how the invading army with the help of nerve gas and technologically advanced weaponry burned down the forest and villages with innocent civilians and at last won the war at Maichew. The patriots retreated and decided to continue guerrilla warfare against the fascist army. Abune Peteros, with all the impressions he got from the war and the burned villages of civilians, returned safely and took refuge in the well-known monastery church of Debre Libanos.

In the monastery he urged the priests and monks to fast. He himself started to fast and prmy for the mercy of God to the people of Ethiopia and prepared himself for the big challenge that is waiting a head for him: “My earnest expectation and hope, is that I will not be put to shame in anything but my lord Jesus Christ will even now as always be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.” (Phillippians 1:20).

During these difficult times he started to question in his preaching. “How a Christian country as Italy could undertake such a hideous terror action of occupation on another peaceful Christian country that is Ethiopia. “For him all Christians were brother and sister pilgrims helping each other in this world on the way to meet God in Heaven. With that he began his crusade against the invading army’s terror and killing machinery. He went further and condemned all the violent actions and killings of civilians by the invading army.

The fascist army was by then committing undiscerning violent actions against innocent civilians because they had suspicion that the people are helping the patriots who were growing in both strength and manpower. During these times there were some EOC priests who out of fear of the terror of the army accepted the Italian leadership in Addis Ababa. Through these priests the fascist army sent letters to win the support of the popular and respected bishop Abune Petros to its camp, to accept the powerful army of Italy as government and stop with his preaching against the violence of the army on civilians and the patriots. If he did this they promised him the best house quarters and a peaceful life in Addis Ababa. Abune Petros saw these letters as a incitement of commit sin against God, his Christian belief and consciousness. With that he refused to accept the offer and stayed in fasting and prayer in the monastery of Debre-Libanos. “Choosing rather to endure ill-treatment with the people of God that to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin” (Hebrews 11:25).

The resistance against the encroachment and violence of the invading army kept on growing like wild fire over the whole of Ethiopia. The patriots began to win battles at different fronts. Abune Petros continued his teachings and preaching to the people to stand-up for their belief and conviction and that God would visit the downtrodden people of Ethiopia soon. He went on further and preached against Italy’s right to occupy Ethiopia with terror and violence. He exhorted the people not to be afraid of the terror and violence from the occupying army. “I say to you, my friends, do not be afraid of those who kill the body and after that have no more that they can do. But I will warm you whom to fear: fear the one who has the power to kill the body and after that has the authority to cast in to hell; yes I tell you fear Him.” (Luke 12:4-5).

The Italian authorities in Addis Ababa who saw and heard him preach wanted by all means to stop Abune Petros from preaching and inciting people to resistance. However, since he was very popular and respected bishop, many in the Italian authorities would rather win his support to accept the Italian authority in Ethiopia than imprisoning or killing him. In the month of July 1936, the patriots planned and executed an attack on Addis Ababa. During that time one of the day Abune Petros clothed with his bishop garment and the ever – present hand cross rapped in a small blue scarlet cloth went into the capital city and began to preach to the people who were lamenting in the grips of the invading army. The soldiers were given order to arrest the Abune and bring him to court for treason against the Italian occupation. While he was in prison waiting for court appearance, both the priests in the city and the officers of Italy tried to convince him to accept the Italian occupation. And finally have him the following ultimatum: To stop preaching against the occupying army’s violence and terror against civilians and the patriots, accept the Italian authorities in Addis Ababa and finally condemn the patriots as bandits. Otherwise, he was told that he will lose his life. Abune Petros refused to comply to the ultimatum set by his tormentors and through the(Italian) interpreter gave the following answer to the interrogating officers of the invading army: “The cry of my country men who died due to your nerve-gas and terror machinery will never allow my conscious to accept your ultimatum. How can I see my God if I give blind eye to such a crime.” Listen to me you who know righteousness, a people in whose heart is my law, do not fear the reproach of man, nor be dismayed at their revilings. For the moth will eat them like garment…..” (Isaiah 51:7-8). “Blessed are those who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 5:10).

After this a quick assembled court sentenced Abune Petros to death. The news of the death sentence on the popular bishop of Ethiopia spread over he whole country. People begin coming to Addis to say farewell of their beloved bishop who stoop-up for the righteous cause which God have called him, for the right of the people of Ethiopia to freedom and independence and against the terror and violence of the invading army. All this form the pulpit of a church and it the presence of deadly ultimatum upon his head. Due to his popularity the fascist army was afraid of riot and attempts by the patriots to free him from prison, and decided that the execution of the death penalty should be done as soon as possible. He was taken to his execution place where a many people and the fascist army officers and generals were gathered, and were told to say his last speech. We cite the Ethiopia Orthodox Church newspaper Vol.1,No. 8,9,10,1945 for the account: ” When Abune Petros came to the place of execution and was given to say his last words, he took his hand cross and removed the blue cloth that was rapped around it and blessed the people at the four corners of the world and said the following last words: “My country men don not believe if they tell you that the patriots are bandits, the patriots are people who yearn for freedom form the terrors of fascism. Bandits are the soldiers who are standing in front of me and you, who come from afar, terrors and violently occupy a weak and peaceful country: our Ethiopia. May God give he people of Ethiopia the strength to resist and never bow down to the fascist army and its violence. May the Ethiopian earth never accept the invading army’s rule.” After that a swarm of bullets from the execution platoon pierced and killed our beloved bishop Abune Petros.

The fascist army wanted by any means to cover up the crime they did against Abune Petros and Ethiopia by forbidding everybody all writings about his execution. Because of his popularity both inside and outside of Ethiopia they thought it might injure their policy of occupying Ethiopia due to the domestic and international opinion that grew against his act. However hard they tired to stop the publicity, the example of Abune Petros shines in all people who love the truth unto this day. Above all, the fascist army’s lost all credibility from the domestic opinion, many found courage after this to leave the occupying army’s stronghold in the capital city to join the patriots and fight for independence. patriotic resistance grew more in strength and lead o a sooner freedom of the country from the fascist occupation. The poplar Ethiopian Poet-Laureate Tsegaye Gebremedhin has illustrated the last days of Abune Petros life by a theatre play called: “Petros at that Hour”.

A statue of Abune Petros was raised in the capital city Addis Ababa 10 years after his death, as a reminder to coming generations of: his unwavering stand for the truth. His unbending courage to stand up against every form of violence on human rights, his integrity and his commitment not to give in for short term gain or treat. Above all his unwavering conviction and belief that we all one day will sand up and answer for our deeds in his life before God.

Posted in Ethiopia | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Fr. Feodor Konyukhov to Ride Camels in Ethiopia

Posted by addisethiopia on July 10, 2010

Renowned Russian traveler and deacon of the Russian Orthodox Church Feodor Konyukhov will start his new expedition in August, this time he is to visit Ethiopia.

The Ethiopian government asked the traveler to come and lay a convenient route that can be useful for tourist organizations, Ukrainian Segodnya paper reported.

Seven people will accompany the cleric. They will travel on camels and change animals for automobiles in the mountainous and stony localities.

Fr. Feodor also plans to visit the motherland of poet Pushkin’s predecessors, holy for Orthodox believers places and hold talks with local government so that it allots land in the country’s capital Addis Ababa for building an Orthodox church there.

The renowned traveler was consecrated a deacon on May 23 and told he would quit traveling to devote his time to prayer, however years-long passion for exploring new places corrected Fr. Feodor’s plans.

Source: Interfax


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Pure African Christians

Posted by addisethiopia on April 9, 2010

The Spanish art photographer, Luis López ‘Gabú’,  shows his great work under the title, ‘Pure African Christians’ in the city of Santiago de Compostela – with a very intimate photographic vision and pictorial on the Christians of the highlands of Ethiopia and Eritrea, who have their origin in the era of Jesus, unlike Christians in other parts of Africa whose faith was imposed by European colonization.

Photo Gallery


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Biblical Plagues Really Happened say Scientists

Posted by addisethiopia on March 29, 2010

The Biblical plagues that devastated Ancient Egypt in the Old Testament were the result of global warming and a volcanic eruption, scientists have claimed.

Researchers believe they have found evidence of real natural disasters on which the ten plagues of Egypt, which led to Moses freeing the Israelites from slavery in the Book of Exodus in the Bible, were based.

But rather than explaining them as the wrathful act of a vengeful God, the scientists claim the plagues can be attributed to a chain of natural phenomena triggered by changes in the climate and environmental disasters that happened hundreds of miles away.

They have compiled compelling evidence that offers new explanations for the Biblical plagues, which will be outlined in a new series to be broadcast on the National Geographical Channel on Easter Sunday.

Archaeologists now widely believe the plagues occurred at an ancient city of Pi-Rameses on the Nile Delta, which was the capital of Egypt during the reign of Pharaoh Rameses the Second, who ruled between 1279BC and 1213BC.

The city appears to have been abandoned around 3,000 years ago and scientists claim the plagues could offer an explanation.

Climatologists studying the ancient climate at the time have discovered a dramatic shift in the climate in the area occurred towards the end of Rameses the Second’s reign.

By studying stalagmites in Egyptian caves they have been able to rebuild a record of the weather patterns using traces of radioactive elements contained within the rock.

They found that Rameses reign coincided with a warm, wet climate, but then the climate switched to a dry period.

Professor Augusto Magini, a paleoclimatologist at Heidelberg University’s institute for environmental physics, said: “Pharaoh Rameses II reigned during a very favourable climatic period.

“There was plenty of rain and his country flourished. However, this wet period only lasted a few decades. After Rameses’ reign, the climate curve goes sharply downwards.

“There is a dry period which would certainly have had serious consequences.”

The scientists believe this switch in the climate was the trigger for the first of the plagues.

The rising temperatures could have caused the river Nile to dry up, turning the fast flowing river that was Egypt’s lifeline into a slow moving and muddy watercourse.

These conditions would have been perfect for the arrival of the first plague, which in the Bible is described as the Nile turning to blood.

Dr Stephan Pflugmacher, a biologist at the Leibniz Institute for Water Ecology and Inland Fisheries in Berlin, believes this description could have been the result of a toxic fresh water algae.

He said the bacterium, known as Burgundy Blood algae or Oscillatoria rubescens, is known to have existed 3,000 years ago and still causes similar effects today.

He said: “It multiplies massively in slow-moving warm waters with high levels of nutrition. And as it dies, it stains the water red.”

The scientists also claim the arrival of this algae set in motion the events that led to the second, third and forth plagues – frogs, lice and flies.

Frogs development from tadpoles into fully formed adults is governed by hormones that can speed up their development in times of stress.

The arrival of the toxic algae would have triggered such a transformation and forced the frogs to leave the water where they lived.

But as the frogs died, it would have meant that mosquitoes, flies and other insects would have flourished without the predators to keep their numbers under control.

This, according to the scientists, could have led in turn to the fifth and sixth plagues – diseased livestock and boils

Professor Werner Kloas, a biologist at the Leibniz Institute, said: “We know insects often carry diseases like malaria, so the next step in the chain reaction is the outbreak of epidemics, causing the human population to fall ill.”

Another major natural disaster more than 400 miles away is now also thought to be responsible for triggering the seventh, eighth and ninth plagues that bring hail, locusts and darkness to Egypt.

One of the biggest volcanic eruptions in human history occurred when Thera, a volcano that was part of the Mediterranean islands of Santorini, just north of Crete, exploded around 3,500 year ago, spewing billions of tons of volcanic ash into the atmosphere.

Nadine von Blohm, from the Institute for Atmospheric Physics in Germany, has been conducting experiments on how hailstorms form and believes that the volcanic ash could have clashed with thunderstorms above Egypt to produce dramatic hail storms.

Dr Siro Trevisanato, a Canadian biologist who has written a book about the plagues, said the locusts could also be explained by the volcanic fall out from the ash.

He said: “The ash fall out caused weather anomalies, which translates into higher precipitations, higher humidity. And that’s exactly what fosters the presence of the locusts.”

The volcanic ash could also have blocked out the sunlight causing the stories of a plague of darkness.

Scientists have found pumice, stone made from cooled volcanic lava, during excavations of Egyptian ruins despite there not being any volcanoes in Egypt.

Analysis of the rock shows that it came from the Santorini volcano, providing physical evidence that the ash fallout from the eruption at Santorini reached Egyptian shores.

The cause of the final plague, the death of the first borns of Egypt, has been suggested as being caused by a fungus that may have poisoned the grain supplies, of which male first born would have had first pickings and so been first to fall victim.

But Dr Robert Miller, associate professor of the Old Testament, from the Catholic University of America, said: “I’m reluctant to come up with natural causes for all of the plagues.

The problem with the naturalistic explanations, is that they lose the whole point.

“And the whole point was that you didn’t come out of Egypt by natural causes, you came out by the hand of God.”

Source: The Daily Telegraph

National Geographic TV Schedule


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O Mighty Cross

Posted by addisethiopia on March 19, 2010

The Ethiopian Cross, like the one in the picture, usually has an elaborate design, baroque style or filigree, reflecting the richness of the hearts of people in the Ethiopian Church.

The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church celebrates the appearance of the Glorious Life-Giving Cross of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ twice during the Liturgical year. The First celebration is held on the Seventeenth day of Meskerem (Ethiopian calendar) Twenty-seven day of September (Western calendar). The Second celebration of the Glorious Life-Giving Cross is celebrated on the Tenth day of Megabit, the Nineteenth of March.

The First and “Major” celebration celebrates the Finding of the Holy Cross by St. Helen, the mother of the Roman Emperor Constantine. St. Helen having been a Christian for most of her life (long before her son accepted the Faith) had made a vow to go to Jerusalem. After her son became Emperor and put an end to the persecution against Christians (the Edict of Milan 312 A.D.) he arranged for his mother to fulfill her desire to visit the Holy Land.

When St. Helen arrived in Jerusalem with her traveling companions and a company of soldiers, she inquired about the “Holy Places” of Our Lord’s Passion and Death, particularly the place of His Crucifixion. After a long search she found the place where The Cross of The Lord had been buried by the Jews. She ordered them to clear out the site of Golgotha where they found three Crosses and that was in the year 326 A.D. However, they did not know which of the three Crosses found was that upon which Our Lord Christ was crucified.

It happened at that time that there was a funeral procession passing the site at which these three Crosses where found. St. Helen had the funeral procession stopped. They lay upon the deceased man one of the Crosses and then the other but he did not rise up but when they laid the third Cross upon him he rose up immediately. They realized that this was “The Cross” of Our Lord Jesus Christ. The Empress and all the believers kneeled down before The Holy Cross; after the Empress sent a piece of the True Cross and the nails which pierced Our Lord’s hands and feet to her son The Emperor, at Constantinople.

The Second celebration (which is celebrated today – Megabit 10 – March 19) commemorates the recovery of the Holy Cross by the Christian Roman Emperor Heraclius in 627 A.D.

The Persian Empire had long been at war with the Roman Empire. At that time another decisive battle occurred at which the Persians were defeated by the Roman Emperor Heraclius. As these defeated Persian’s retreated from Egypt to their country, they passed through Jerusalem. A Persian Prince entered the Church of the Holy Cross, which had been built by Empress St. Helen. He saw a great light shinning from a piece of wood located on a place decorated with gold. He thrust his hand to it and there went forth from it fire which burned his fingers. The Christians told him that this is the base of the Holy Cross and they told him how it was discovered and no one was able to touch it except a Christian. This Persian Prince deceived the two Deacons who were standing to guard it and gave them much money so they would carry this piece and go with it with him to his country. They took it and put it in a box and went with him to his country along with those whom he too as captives from the city of Jerusalem.

When Emperor Heraclius heard that, he went with his army to Persia, fought with them and slew many of them. He traveled about this country searching for this piece of The Holy Cross but he could not find it, for the Persian Prince had dug a hole in his garden and ordered the two Deacons to put the box in it and buried it and then he killed them.

One of the captives of that Persian Prince, which was the daughter of one of the Deacons, was looking out of the window by chance and saw what happened. She went to the Emperor and told him what she saw. He went with the Bishops, Priests, Deacons and the Soldiers. They dug there and found the box, which they removed from the hole. Upon opening it, the piece of the True Cross shone – this was in 628 A.D.

The Emperor provided costly silks and cloth of gold and a chest made from gold encrusted with gem stones. The Bishops wrapped this piece of The True Cross in these costly silks and cloth of gold fabrics and placed into the Gold gem encrusted Reliquary. The Emperor then took it back to the city of Constantinople where it was placed in the Basilica of The Holy Cross.

Note: No wonder Muslim raiders from the Arab peninsula defeated Persians in 632 A.D — four years after the true Cross was rescued from Persia. This particular event probably paved the way for the Islamic conquest of the once great Persia.



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Pilot Error, Not The Cause For Ethiopian Plane Crash

Posted by addisethiopia on March 2, 2010

It was unlikely that pilot error was the single cause of the incident, Canadian aviation expert Max Vermij told reporters Monday in a news conference with US legal firm Ribbeck Law.

The loss of control in flight is nearly always initiated by a mechanical failure of the aircraft … pilot error is not the primary cause in those kind of crashes. This crash is a loss of control in flight,” said Vermij, who has over 30 years experience in investigating air disasters.

He added that the evidence so far obtained on the flight was “not in line with any type of pilot error that I have experienced.”

Continue reading…

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Happy Valentine’s Day

Posted by addisethiopia on February 15, 2010

This Sunday, the Seventh of Yekatit, on the Western calendar the Fourteenth of February, thousands upon thousands, maybe millions upon millions of people around the world will exchange “Valentine Day” cards, flowers, box candy etc., as an expression of love. While the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church does not “Commemorate” St. Valentine tomorrow, we here at the Monastery thought it might be good to share with the readers of the Monastery Webpage the facts concern the “Man behind the Day.”

Firstly, there was a man, a Priest in fact, named Abba Valentine. He served the Church in Rome during the middle to last Third Century. He was an Orthodox Tewahedo Christian. He is noted for helping those imprisoned and facing martyrdom; he would bring them the Holy Mysteries – The Sacraments, Read the Sacred Scriptures – Gospels to those imprisoned and comfort those who were soon to be martyred for their faith in Christ Jesus. Eventually Abba Valentine was apprehended and sent by the Roman Emperor Claudius II to the Prefect of the City of Rome, who tried by making Father Valentine renounce his faith in Christ Jesus with many promises. Abba Valentine refused to renounce his faith in Christ and was beaten with clubs as his punishment for “refusing” the Emperors wishes. Continuing to proclaim Jesus Christ as the Saviour of the world, the Emperor had Abba Valentine beheaded. He received the “Crown of Martyrdom” on February 14, about the year 270 A.D. Archaeologists working in ancient Rome unearthed a Catacomb and an ancient Church dedicated to Abba Saint Valentine. This Church was originally built by the Archbishop of Rome, Julius I.

So while the majority of our secular society will be exchanging their cards, flowers, box candy, etc, it only right and proper that we remember the “Man behind the Day” and more importantly the conviction of his Faith in Jesus Christ the Lord! May God grant to each of us that strong faith and may Abba Saint Valentine intercede us all too the Lord.

Source: Nine Saints Ethiopian Orthodox Monastery


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