The Covenant with God
In Ethiopia, the traditional rites of Coptic Christianity are based around worshipping and venerating the Ark of the Covenant. According to the Ethiopians, the Ark is held in the Chapel of Saint Mary of Zion, in Aksum. This sacred object would have been brought from Jerusalem some 3000 years ago by King Menelik I, the first Ethiopian emperor and son of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon. No-one is allowed to see it and common belief is that it could kill anyone who should do so. Only the high priest of the Orthodox Church, who remains enclosed within the chapel and its fenced-in terrain, is allowed to guard, contemplate and worship it.
Just like the Jews, the Ethiopians believe that the presence of the Almighty resonates from this object and that it is His agency on Earth. It is the covenant or pact with God.