Ethiopian ecclesiastical titles


Ethiopian ecclesiastical titles

Important offices of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahido Church were:
*Patriarch we Re'ese Liqane Papasat -Patriarch and First of the Archbishop, meaning Catholicos. Since 1959, the title of the head of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church is Patriarch Catholicos of Ethiopia. The first Patriarch, Abuna Basilios was enthroned by the Coptic Orthodox Pope Cyril VI in 1959, and so the Patriarchs of Ethiopia are part of the Apostolic succession of the Holy See of St. Mark. The Ethiopian Patriarchate combined the old offices of Abuna and Ichege (see below). In 2001, the title of Archbishop of Axum was added to the titles of the Patriarch after Axum was elevated to the rank of an Archdiocese by the Holy Synod.
* Abuna -- Metropolitan Archbishop of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church. From the 4th Century until the middle of the 20th century he was a Coptic monk appointed by the Coptic Orthodox Pope of Alexandria and Patriarch of All Africa to serve as its leader. However as time progressed, the authority of the Abuna was reduced to little more than a figurehead largely because the incumbents spoke little Ge'ez or Amharic. In 1948, the Coptic Orthodox Pope Joseph II appointed the then Ichage (see below) as the first Ethiopian born Archbishop, Abune Basilios, and granted the Ethiopian church autocephaly. His successor as Coptic Orthodox Pope, Cyril VI, elevated Abune Basilios to the exalted rank of Patriarch in 1959. The title of Abuna is now held by all the numerous Archbishops and Bishops of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
* Ichege -- the abbot of the monastery of Debre Libanos, who served as the second highest ecclesiastic of the Ethiopian church, and was often the "de facto" head of that church. Beginning in the mid-17th century, the Ichage lived at Gondar while the capital was in that city. The Ichage followed the capital when it moved to Debre Tabor, Mekele and ultimately Addis Ababa.
*Sebate --Administrator of the Debre Libanos Monastery and deputy to the Ichage.
* Aqabe sa'at ("Guardian of the Church hours") -- Chaplain to the Emperor. Until the mid-17th century was second only to the Abuna; James Bruce in the late 18th century describes him as the third highest ecclesiastic.
*Qomos --Archimandrite
*Lique Siltanat' --"Arch-hierarch" title originally granted only to the Dean of Holy Trinity Cathedral in Addis Ababa, but today is granted to the deans of most of Ethiopia's cathedrals.
*Lique Liqawint --"Arch-scholar", a title granted to the Dean and Abbot of the Ba'eta Le Mariam Monastery, the mausoleum church on the grounds of Addis Ababa's Imperial Palace, where Emperor Menelik II and Empress Zewditu are buried.
*Lique Diaqon -Archdeacon
*Diaqon -Deacon

ee also

*Ethiopian aristocratic and court titles


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