Logo Cross and CrescentCross and Crescen- Ethiopia as an Example of Religious Coexistence

Sheikhs and Priests

Religious Experts between Text and Practise


The most popular figure in the religious communities of Ethiopia is the Skeikh among the Muslims and the priest (Qes) in the Christian parish. Both are exceptional regarding their level of knowledge and education.

Religious experts and specialists are an inherent feature of both Islam and Christianity. They occupy important positions and functions reflected in various titles. Their pious wisdom emerges due to their religious education, where they learn about the holy scriptures and religious sciences. This knowledge provides them with the authority to serve the community as general advisers in educational and ritual as well as in religious and every-day affairs.


Differences between the two religions could be seen in the notion of hierarchy. While the church embeds the religious difference institutionally, the adherents of the Islamic faith deny such positioning, due to their argument, that all people occupy an egalitarian position before God.

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Goethe Institut Addis Abeba