This photo was taken in Axum, northern Ethiopia in November 2019. On the first seven days of each of the 13 months of the Ethiopian calendar, a replica of the Ark of the Covenant is paraded around the streets of the town in the very early hours of the morning, followed by a candlelit procession of thousands of devotees, chanting in a request to God for forgiveness of the sins of the world, and peace for humanity everywhere. The route of the procession follows the route reputedly taken by Menelik I when, having displaced the Ark of the Covenant from Jerusalem, his people brought it to Ethiopia some 3,000 years ago where, the Ethiopian church maintains, it remains. The displacement of such a meaningful object, and its power to unite such a huge body of people in movement and the simplicity of prayer for the whole world is truly stirring.
2020 Global Law Photography Competition: Prayer for peace , photo from Edward Saunders, Associate at Mayer Brown International LLP in London.
by Laura Vosper | Apr 6, 2020