International Institute for Religious Freedom


Kay Bascom. Overcomers: God’s deliverance through the Ethopian Revolution as witnessed primarily by the Kale Heywet Church community. Christians under Pressure: Studies in Discrimination and Persecution. Vol. 2. Bonn: Culture and Science Publ. (VKW), 2018. 384 pp. ISBN 978-3-86269-162-3.


God’s deliverance through the Ethiopian Revolution as witnessed primarily by the Kale Heywet Church community

Overcomers bears witness in a time of discrimination and persecution to how God delivers His people. Both from leaders under severe pressure and from ordinary believers caught in the vortex of Marxist re-education and cultural upheaval, these testimonies primarily from the Kale Heywet Church community recount experiences during the Ethiopian Revolution (1974–1991).

In Overcomers, the author Kay Bascom offers of a wealth of information pertaining to a crucial phase in the history of Ethiopia when the nation was suddenly thrust into communism and the church came under fire. The author’s participation as both insider and outsider brings to light authentic stories full of pulsating and detailed accounts of Ethiopian believers’ lives and faith, along with deep reflections related to the existential challenges brought about by the Ethiopian Revolution. The book’s many witnesses demonstrate God’s providential interventions in the persecuted church’s time of critical need – as He is doing currently in Ethiopia – including eye witness accounts and reflections on the horrific nature of the Red Terror. Overcomers advances fresh perspectives on mission and state encounters, and on mission and church relationships during the military rule, an ugly chapter in Ethiopia’s modern political history. Furthermore, the book provides rich and penetrating insights on the general and local history of Ethiopia freshly told, revealing local dynamics within the larger historical and political context of the nation.

Dr. Tibebe Eshete (Professor of African History and Religion, Michigan State University, Author of The Evangelical Movement in Ethiopia)