Serving in Africa

Congregation Beth Yeshua Ethiopia

Gondar / Bahir Dar / Merawi,  Ethiopia

About Our Congregations

In late 2019 Rabbi Hershberg was introduced to the movie, The Red Sea Diving Resort. The plight of the Ethiopian Jews, known as Beta Israel, brought him to tears, and he resolved to do what he could for them. Beta Israel is a sect of Ethiopian Jews.
In October 2019 Rabbi Hershberg met with Rabbi Kokeb Gedamu in Ethiopia, and out of that meeting CBY Ethiopia was birthed in Gondar, and Bahir Dar, Ethiopia.

Rabbi Gedamu will serve as the overseer of the Ethiopian congregations. He is ordained by the International Alliance of Messianic Congregations & Synagogues (IAMCS), and served as Regional Director for Africa, as well as the director of the board of operations for Tikvah/Hope, a humanitarian aid project of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA).

Rabbi Kokeb Gedamu - Overseer of Ethiopian Congregations

I was raised in Ethiopia where I met and married my wife, Menalu, in Gondar, Ethiopia. Gondar is the home of the Beta Yisrael community.  During the communist uprising in Ethiopia, we fled the country making a difficult and perilous journey through the desert of Sudan. We encountered many hardships, even fearing for our lives, but God protected and delivered us.

Below is a timeline of our journey through the years.

  • 1987-1993 We lived in Sudan where our first child, Ruhama, was born in 1990. I served as an Elder in a congregation of Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees in Khartoum, the Capital of Sudan. There I taught Bible school, led prayer groups, and tried to encourage those living in less than ideal conditions.
  • 1993-1994 I served as an Elder at the Maranatha Refuge Ethiopian Church in Cairo, Egypt. It was there that our second child, Ebenezer, was born in 1993.
  • 1994-2000 We made Aliyah (immigration to Israel) where our last child, Tsiona, was born in 1996. While in Israel, I served as Senior Pastor of six Ethiopian Messianic Jewish Congregations until I was called to further my education in Canada in 2000. There I was ordained as a pastor at the Open Bible Faith Fellowship of Canada.

Serving in Ethiopia

Reaching the Beta Israel Jews

Gondar / Bahir Dar / Merawi,  Ethiopia

About Our Congregations

I was born in 1969 in Gondar, Ethiopia, and grew up in Azezo. Azezo is a village in northern Ethiopia south of the city of Gondar. After finishing high school I served four years in the Ethiopian military during the reign of the Derg (Socialist Communist) government.

Because life was so difficult, I moved to the Khartoum, the Capital of Sudan, in October 1989 where I lived for one year.

In November 1990 I became a born again Christian, and served at Khartoum Bethel church as a choir and worship leader.

In February 1997 I returned to Gondar where I met and married Banchamlak Adera in July. Shortly afterwards, we moved to Bahir Dar. Banchamlak works with me as the leader of the prayer team at the Bahi Dar congregation, and is the organizer of the El-Al prayer ministry.

We have two children, a son, Metebek, born in 1998, and a daughter, Metsinanat, born in 2001.

In October 2019, I was introduced to Rabbi Greg Hershberg of Beth Yeshua International during his visit with Rabbi Kokeb Gedamu. At that time he established two congregations under Beth Yeshua. I was appointed congregational leader of these congregations—CBY Ethiopia (Gondar), and CBY Ethiopia (Bahir Dar), with Rabbi Kokeb Gedamu as the overseer. A third congregation has been added — CBY Ethiopia (Merawi)

Thank you and God bless you!

~ Desalegn Amsalu
Congregational Leader
[email protected]

If you wish to support CBY Ethiopia, donations can be sent to Beth Yeshua International. Visit BYI’s giving page for more information.

On the Map

CBY Ethiopia currently has three Congregations.

  • Gondar – Gondar is a city in northern Ethiopia.
  • Bahir Dar – Bahir Dar is the capital city of the Amhara region in northern Ethiopia.
  • Merawi – Merawi is a city administration located 30 kilometers south of Bahir Dar, Amhara Region’s capital in north-western Ethiopia.
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…Let Ethiopia stretch out its hands to God.

– Psalm 68:31b