"Before we reach town we run into Brethren Essien and Akpan, who have come down from Ikot Usen to meet us." Boyd Reese (left) speaks with Coolidge Akpan Okon Essien (middle) and J. U. Akpan (right). Essien was the leader of a Nigerian "Restoration Movement" similar to that of American Churches of Christ and Akpan was a preacher and evangelist in the movement. This photograph comes from an album that recounts Eldred Echols and Boyd Reese's visit to Nigeria in 1950. The Lawrence Avenue Church of Christ in Nashville, Texas asked the two missionaries to visit Nigeria and report on an emerging indigenous Christian movement whose leader participated in a Bible correspondence course run by the Tennessee congregation. Upon their arrival, the missionaries found several thousand Christians led by Coolidge Akpan Okon Essien, from the Efik tribe in Eastern Nigeria, whose doctrine and practice were similar to that of American Churches of Christ.
photographic print, 6.5 x 9 cm.
Abilene Christian University Brown Library Milliken Special Collections; Center for Restoration Studies; Wendell Broom
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