June 26, 2009: The Patriarch of the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church, Abune Paulos, apparently backed off from an announcement made on Jun 24 that he would reveal the Ark of the Covenant - which he claimed to have seen and which allegedly resides in a church in Ethiopia - to the world. The Patriarch, who was in Italy to meet with Pope Benedict XVI, said:
"Soon the world will be able to admire the Ark of the Covenant described in the Bible as the container of the tablets of the law that God delivered to Moses and the center of searches and studies for centuries."
- From Israel to Egypt, where it resided on the island of Elephantine for several centuries
- From there to Lake Tana in Ethiopia, where it stayed on the island of Tana Qirqos for 800 years.
- From there to Axum (also in Ethiopia), where it has resided to this day.
Furthermore, according to Cornuke the ark has a guardian who lives in the church where the ark resides and who never leaves and worships in front of the ark for 13 hours every day.
Apparently, Ethiopians and the Ethiopian church were as surprised by the statements of the patriarch as the rest of the world - many being angry at the patriarch, as they see the ark as a holy object that should only be seen or touched by the most senior of priests.
Furthermore, Grant Jeffrey, who spoke extensively with Robert Thompson, a former adviser to Emperor Haile Selassie I of Ethiopia, claims that Ethiopia doesn't have the ark any more. According to Thompson, the Ark of the Covenant had been taken to Ethiopia by Menelik, the son of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon, because King Solomon was slipping into apostasy. Furthermore, Thompson alleges that after the Ethiopian civil war Israel sent a team of commandos from the tribe of Levi to retrieve the ark in 1991. Now the religious leaders of Israel allegedly wait for a sign from God to rebuild the Temple of Jerusalem.
Game and Story Use
- The Roman Catholic Church has more than its share of conspiracy theories surrounding it. Given that the patriarch was visiting the Pope while making this announcement, what was their role in all this?
- The reversal is suspicious. What are THEY trying to desperately conceal, and what hold do they have over the patriarch?
- Is the Ark an alien artifact?
- Levite Commandos on a mission to steal the Ark in the middle of a civil war? Sounds like game material to me!