Story number 2 for 11 Jul 2001

By July 11, 2001

(Ethiopia)–Turning elsewhere, SIM reports that the horror of the AIDS epidemic in Africa has caused a great transformation of the church body. Cultural context has made this issue a complex one for believers to tackle. SIM’s William O’Donovan describes how the dynamics of the problem created some challenges. “Africa is known to be now the epicenter of the AIDS epidemic in the world. In certain countries, such as Ethiopia, the church has not, up until very recently, even addressed this issue because, there is a mentality that the issues that relate to that part of life will not be discussed. It’s a taboo issue.” O’Donovan says the devastation of AIDS opened the eyes and mouths of the evangelical body in Africa. “The church realized they need to teach plainly, and openly, what the Scriptural standards of living and righteousness are; and that this cannot be kept just as a taboo subject any longer. That’s one enormous challenge that is gripping the whole church all over Africa, not just in Ethiopia.”

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