Liberia was founded in the early 19th century by the American Colonization Society, for liberated slaves returning from the USA. The territory was inhabited by the Mandingo and other groups. During the 1930s, it was discovered that slavery continued in Liberia, leading to a new American-Liberian government that abolished slavery, but continued to withhold rights from the indigenous peoples. It was overthrown in 1980 in a bloody coup, which brought into power a corrupt regime. From 1989 to 2003 Liberia was devastated by a civil war. Many people were killed, others were displaced or fled to neighbouring countries, and the economy was destroyed. A transitional government was formed in 2003, for a period of two years, and a UN mission put in place. Liberia's economy was mainly based on the production and export of timber and rubber, and farming. In 2005, recovery was still slow, and the security situation remained difficult. The main Protestant churches in Liberia are the Methodists, the Lutherans, and the Baptists. There are also some large Pentecostal and indigenous churches. Besides the Lutheran and Presbyterian churches, the Methodists (part of the United Methodist Church), the Church of the Lord (Aladura, headquartered in Nigeria), and the Anglicans (part of the Province of West Africa) are WCC members. The churches have played an important role in peace and rehabilitation, through the Liberian Council of Churches, and in inter-faith cooperation with the Muslimcommunity. The Association of Evangelicals of Liberia is affiliated with the WEA.
More on Liberia:
Ecumenical solidarity visit to Liberia and Sierra Leone
An international ecumenical delegation sent by the World Council of Churches (WCC) visited Liberia and Sierra Leone from 2 - 8 November 2008. The Living Letters visit to the two West African countries focused on learning how these nations cope with the memories of war.