Sierra Leone, officially the Republic of Sierra Leone, is a country in West Africa. It is bordered by Guinea to the north and east, Liberia to the southeast, and the Atlantic Ocean to the west and southwest. Orthodox Christianity came to Sierra Leone in the latter part of the twentieth century.
As in most sub-saharan Africa, Christianity came late to Sierra Leone. During the last decades of the eighteenth century freed slaves, who had been introduced to Christianity by their owners in North America and the West Indies, returned to the area that is now Sierra Leone, an area that has had a Muslim presence from at least the sixteenth century.
White Christian Protestant missionaries arrived early in the nineteenth century, followed in mid-century by Roman Catholics. It wasn't until late in the twentieth century that Orthodox Christian missionaries arrived in Sierra Leone. Missionary efforts by the Church of Alexandria in West Africa began in 1983. In 1997, the Diocese of Ghana was established with jurisdiction over much of West Africa including Sierra Leone.
In the year 2000, Archimandrite Themistocles (Adamopoulo) arrived in Kenya, in east Africa, to preach and serve at the Kenyan Orthodox parishes and establish a series of schools. In early 2008, Fr. Themistocles moved to Sierra Leone where he involved himself in activities similar to those he had begun in Kenya. During the following years Fr. Themistocles expanded the Orthodox missionary presence to include a missionary residence and three churches as well as setting up feeding programs for the hungry that has been recognized by the Sierra Leone government. He also started two schools.
In October 2009, the Church of Alexandria elevated the Diocese of Ghana to an archdiocese with a new name, the Archdiocese of Accra, and established the Diocese of Sierra Leone. At the November 21, 2012 Fall meeting of the Holy Synod of the Church of Alexandria the Diocese of Sierra Leone was elevated to and renamed the Archdiocese of Conakry and Guinea.
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