The Ethiopian Orthodox Christians’ church, Debrekuskuam, is located in the Skyway neighborhood of King County’s unincorporated West Hill area, on 7614 South 126th Street, Seattle, WA.

By Goorish Wibneh |

Ethiopian Orthodox Christians in the Seattle area have bought and remodeled the former Skyway Library building into an Ethiopian Orthodox church. The building reopened on March 5, just in time to celebrate the May 1 Ethiopian Easter.  It now hosts two Tabots – replicas of the Ark of the Covenant – signifying two churches, St. Mary and Our Saviour.

Parish Committee members Hirut Dube and Genene Degefu said members of the church conducted a two-year search for a church property. King County listed the library building for sale, and finally sold it to the church in 2015.

Zillow posted the building’s sale amount as exactly $1 million. The church is located in the Skyway neighborhood of King County’s unincorporated West Hill area, on 7614 South 126th Street, just two blocks from Renton Avenue South.

The church’s name is a mouthful: Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church Seattle Debrekuskuam Saint Mary Wedebre Keranio MedhaneAlem. It has served the faithful from a rented space on Rainier Avenue South and South Walker Street for three years, and is presently under the purview of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC), situated in Ethiopia.

Degefu, a nursing assistant at Swedish Hospital who also serves as a treasurer for the Parish Committee of Debrekuskuam, said, “In the last three years, because the church’s service was happening in a good manner and our follower membership grew, we needed to purchase a church building.”

Because it was God’s will and the faithful diligently cooperated, the purchase was made,” he explained, “It was a King County library and now we converted it into a church.”

The postmodern church now attracts diverse followers who speak several East African languages, traveling not only from South Seattle, but all the way from North Seattle, West Seattle, Bellevue and Tukwila.

Continue reading this story on The Seattle Globalist
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