Against Great Odds
Against Great Odds tells the Meserete Kristos Church (MKC) story, during the 1982 - 1992 decade of the Mengistu Haile Mariam's Marxist/Leninist regime. Missionaries were expelled from the country in the early 1980s and the MKC was forced underground. Church buildings and properties were expropriated and used for the communist revolution. In spite of the persecution the church grew from 5,000 to 50,000 members, something the MKC leaders and members attribute to prayer.
This production was first scheduled for 1991 during the time of the communist regime. A carnet was prepared and production permits were secured from the Ethiopian Ministry of Information. Extensive communication with the MKC leadership along with a pre-production trip were carried out in preparation for production. The revolution which eventually let to the deposing of the communist regime was something no one could have prepared for. Days before departure, the production was delayed for what ended up being one year.
The "bare-bones" production crew arrived just weeks after the revolutionaries claimed victory as the church started to receive the return of buildings and properties. It was a time of great jubilation. Even so, the story captured in this production reflects the underground church experience, still fresh in living memory.