He Lived for His Lord Jesus Christ
On the 22nd of October, His Excellency Dr. Emmanuel Abraham (103) passed away after a long life of serving his church and his country. The funeral took place on the 27th of October at the Addis Ababa MekaneYesus Church, which is located at Amist Kilo and he was laid to rest at the St. Paul and St. Peter Church graveyard.
The church building was already full of people by the time the family of the decease arrived escorting the coffin. Many had come to pay their last respect to this great man and leader. The family members had arrived from the US the day before, and old friends and representatives of the Ethiopian Evangelical Church MekaneYesus (EECMY) partner organisations, and various institutions had come for this special occasion.
The memorial service was led by EECMY President Rev. Dr.Wakseyoum Idosa and all church leaders as well as synod presidents were present. The former Vice-President of the EECMY, Rev. Dereje Jemberu preached over the texts from Romans 14:7-8 “For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.” Rev. Dereje underlined that H.E. Dr. Emmanuel Abraham had truly his entire life lived for his Lord Jesus Christ. He had lived a life following his Master, and in all things lived for his Lord as well as he had been willing to, at all time, to die for his Lord. His life had been exemplary in both his ministry to his church, EECMY as well as to his country, Ethiopia. The commitment of H.E. Dr. Emmanuel Abraham to live for his Lord Jesus Christ was what kept him strong in the difficult years under the Dergue and throughout his 22 years as President of the EECMY. Rev. Dereje encouraged the attendants of the funeral that they learn from the exemplary life and ministry of this man of God and pray that God raise up more leaders like him within our church and country.
After the preaching several people took to the stage to share statements of memories in the honor of H.E. Dr. Emmanuel Abraham. The first was Mrs. Ruth Abraham, the daughter of the deceased, who spoke on behalf of the family. She shared with us all about the gentle and loving father he had been, and how he purposefully had raised them up to be committed Christians and good citizens. Though times had been tough, he always made sure to have caring and uplifting conversations with the people around him.
Others, who gave memorial speeches were: Mr. Hailu W/Semayat – EECMY YDCS Board Chair Person, Mr. Mesfin Lesanu – former Vice-President of EECMY, Aba Seyoum Fransua – Ethiopian Catholic Church Deputy General Secretary, Mr Mamo Gebremeskel Representative of the Ethiopian kale-Hiwot Church, Pastor Tsadiku Abdo President of the Evangelical Churches Fellowship of Ethiopia, Dr.Negusu Legese – World Council of Churches Africa Desk Secretary, and Rev. ØyvindÅsland – Norwegian Lutheran Mission General Secretary. They all expressed their condolences to the family, who have lost a loved one, and the church who will lay to rest a great leader.
H.E. Dr. Emmanuel Abraham will always be remembered in the history of the EECMY as a faithful and committed minister of the church, but he will also be remembered as a respected servant of his country during the times of Emperor Haile Selassie, when he served as an ambassador, to India, Italy, and Great Britain and later as a Minister for the Government in various Ministerial offices at different times. To show their last respect Mr. Abadula Gamada – Speaker of the House of Representatives, Mr. Lemma Megerssa – President of the Oromia Regional State Government, Mr. Abyi Mohammed, Oromia Regional State head for Urban Development, Ambassadress Genet Zewdie, Negasso Gidada - former President of Ethiopia, Dr. Fasil Nahome – Advisor to the Prime Minister and also Representative of the Office of the President of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia were all present at the memorial service.