The Etche people are of a very large population with about 200 towns and villages put together. Etche people are a major ethnic group inhabiting parts of the north-eastern region of Rivers State. The land covers an area of approximately 984 square kilometers. The people are predominantly farmers. They produce yams, cassava, corn, plantain etc as food crops. They also produce cash crops, which include palm produce and rubber. They are also traders and hunters.
About 5% of the populations are Christians. The rest are nominal Christians. A great percentage of the people practice syncretism. Yet there are many who practice traditional religion. There are lots of Churches all over the land but some of the so-called Churches are occultic.
The vision to reach the people of Etche for Christ was the brainchild of the late Rev. R. A. Oteh who in the early seventies, together with the then Ikwerre Baptist Association, sent preachers there. In 1993, the Home and Foreign Mission Board of the Nigerian Baptist Convention declared Etche a home mission field, and Rev. and Mrs. M. O. Akpobome were the pioneer missionaries.
There are several ministry opportunities that can be helpful in reaching the people. Some of them are medical missions, church planting in remote areas and reaching the youths for Christ.
People Groups on Focus: Etche People, other Nigerians in Diaspora
- Regular Outreach programmes such as Film, medical, one to one witnessing, etc, at least twice in a month.
- To make sure regular Discipleship programmes and literacy classes are run in all the Churches.
- Strengthening all the Existing Churches through impactful seminars and other Church growth methods.
- Planting of at least 10 Churches in villages where there are converts and acceptability of the gospel (especially where there are no Churches. )
- Establishment of a viable clinic to cater for the health challenges of the people and also to introduce mobile clinic to far villages at least once a month combined with outreach programmes.
How can you be Involved
- There is the need for Mobility for the Missionary
- We need Discipleship Materials (follow the master, serve the master etc)
- There is the need for the adoption of Churches and Pastors
- Evangelism equipment like projector, generator, amplifiers and cone speakers are needed
- We need Cameras (video and photo)
- We need support for the completion of the Mission house
- Training of indigenes in the theological institutions