History of Macaafa Qulqulluu

The translation of some books of the Bible in Oromo and later complete Macaafa Qulqullu, first in Sabean and later in Latin script/qubee, have been in circulation since the 1870s.

  1. Dr. Johannes L. Krapf 1810-1881.
      Rev. John L. Krapf
    • Psalms (farsotaa mootiin dawiid) Published by the British and Foreign Bible-Society in London, printed at the Mission Press at St. Chrishona, near Basel, Switzerland,  1871
    • The Gospel according to St, John ( Wangeelii Yohanis).Published by the British and Foreign Bible Society in London, printed.at the Mission Press  at St. Chrishona , near  Basel, Switzerland, 1871
    • The New Testament (Qulqulootaa Maxaafotaa Kakuu Harawaa, Yoonaniittii gara afaan Oromoottii kan hiike Yohanis Luwis Krapf,) Assisted by Aleqa Zenabe of Ethiopia and the Oromos. Ruufoo, Shoolaan, Waareen and Jagan}. Published by the British and Foreign Bible Society in London. 1876.
    • The Second Book of Moses, Exodus (Oriitiin kan Bayu, kan hiikamte Ajajamaa Mootii Minilik kan Itoophiyaa. Kan afaan   sidaamaa  Afaan Oromootii. Kan Itoophiyaa Zanbitu xaafe. Kan hiikes Gebre Maaraamii Ilmiidaraa, kan qajeelche kan walqixxeesse Luwiis Krapf afaan ibraayixiitii). Published by the British and Foreign Bible-Society in London. Printed at the Mission Press. St. Chrishona, near Basel, Switzerland. 1877
  2. Onesmos Nasib 1865-1931 (Asisted by Aster Gannoo and the work coordinated by Nils Hylander)
      Onesimos Nesib
    • The New Testament of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, translated into the Galla/Oromo language by Onesimos Nasib (Kakuu haaraa, qulqulluu wangeelaa Gooftaa keenyaa Yesus Kristos, macaafota ergamoota isaas, afaan Oromootti, kan hiike Onesimos nama biyya Oromooti).  Printed at the Swedish Mission Press in Moneulln near Massowa, Eritrea. 1893.
    • The Oromo Bible translation was completed and published by the British Foreign Bible Society, printed at St. Chrishona Press, Switzerland, 1899.  The first print copies was 2000 and New Testament 5000.copies.
  3. New Translation by the Ethiopian Evangelical Church Mekane Yesus. Western Synod
      Rev. Dr. Tasgaraa Hirphoo
    • Translators: Rev. Manfred Zach, Mr. Tewofilos Qana’aa, Rev. Gobu Bonga, Rev. Tasgara Hirphoo, Mrs. Almut Tasgara-Tumat, Rev. Jabeessaa. Mrs. Babulish Daqa typist
    • New translation started in Bojjii Oromia Region in 1975 and was completed in 1993.
    • The Gospel of Luke was printed in Finfinnee /Addis Ababa in 1976
    • The New Testament was printed in Finfinnee/ Addis Ababa 1979, 2000 copies.
    • The New Testament (pocket size) was again published by the Ethiopian Bible Society (EBS) and printed in Hong.
    • Psalms was printed in Finfinnee / Addis Ababa in 1981, 10000 copies.
    • The New Testament & Psalms in Sabean scripts together was published by EBS and printed in Korea 6000 copies, 1992.
    • The whole Oromo Bible in Sabean scripts was published by EBS and was printed in Korea in 1993, 25000 copies.
  4. Second New Translation in Latin script (qubee)
    • By Rev/Dr/ Tasgaraa Hirphoo assisted by Rev.Henning Uzar
    • New Testament & Psalms published by EBS and printed in Seoul, Korea 1995, 66000 copies.
    • The whole Oromo Bible was paid by EECMY and printed in Seoul, Korea 1997, 100.000 copies.
    • econd edition paid by EECMY and printed in Seoul, Korea 2007, 102.000 copies.
  5. Digitalization of Oromo Bible.
    • Rev. Tasgaraa Hirphoo, assisted by. Rev. Hartmut Schoenherr and Mr. Robsan   Mako.

Today there are over ten million Oromo Evangelical Christians who make use the Macaafa Qulqulluu. Besides, many Oromo Christians of the Ethiopian Tewahido Orthodox, the Ethiopian Catholic, and the Ethiopian Seventh-day Churches in most cases use Macaafa Qulqulu are not less than ten million. But when we compare the numbers of Oromo Bibles received into the Country in the last twenty years, which was all together not more than six hundred thousand that one can understand what unfortunate differences it is. This means that there are at least over nineteen million Oromo Christians who are without Macaafa Qulqulu today in their hands. in Ethiopia. What a shortage if not crises for our Churches that gather those Christians who are not being natured on the Word of God.

Therefore the major reason among others that demanded the establishment of OBS was this unfortunate situation which is not acceptable by any reason to any believers who nurture on the Word of God and know what it means to him/her life in this world and beyond. It is believed that if an independent organization takes up the task of publishing the Oromo Bibles and other related translations the problems can be responsibly addressed vigorously and the needs can be easily addressed progressively.  To address this dire need of ours, it is believed that the Oromo speaking Christians, being motivated by the legacy of our for runners legacy established OBiS  to translate, publish and print Oromo Bible as declared above by its Founders.

Other Contributors of Macaafa Qulqulluu

Mr. Paulos Ruffo

Mr. Paulos Ruffo (1848/49 -1871)

Contributor in translation of New Testament in Oromo language

Aleqa Zenebe

Assist Rev. John L. Krapf with Mr. Paulos Ruffo

Aster Gano Salban

Aster Gano Salban (1872-1964)

She assist Onesimos Nesib in translating Oromo Bible

Rev. Gobbuu Bongaa

Rev. Gobbuu Bongaa

Worked as translator from 1975-1993

Mr. Teoflos Qana'aa

Mr. Teoflos Qana’aa

Worked as translator from 1975-1991

Rev. Jabeessaa Moggasa

Rev. Jabeessaa Moggasa

Worked as translator of new Oromo translations

Babulish Daqa

Mrs. Babulish Daqa

Worked as typist from 1975-1993

Rev. Manfred Zach

Rev. Manfred Zach 1975-1981

A team leader and explained the Hebrew and Greek texts

-Rev. Manfred Zach (1932 -2020)

Mrs. Almut Tasgara

Mrs. Almut Tasgara

Took over the work from Rev. M. Zach and worked from 1981-1993

Rev. Henning Uzar

Rev. Henning Uzar

Helped transcription of the Oromo Bible from Sabean (Amharic) script into Latin script from 1993-1997

Rev. Hartmut Schonherr

Rev. Hartmut Schonherr

Helped digitalizing the whole Oromo Bible from 2011-2013

Robsan Mako

Mr. Robsan Mako

Assisted digitalizing the whole Oromo Bible