From 1894 to 1899 the country was a protectorate of South Africa, and in 1902 came under the British. In 1968 it achieved its independence from Britain. King Mswati III took the throne in 1986. Swaziland is economically dependent on South Africa for most of its goods. About half the country is engaged in subsistence agriculture and herding. AIDS has reached catastrophic proportions with over 33 percent of the population infected. The average life expectancy at birth has dropped to 38 years. Methodist remains the largest Protestant denomination after being invited by the Swazi king in 1825. Most of the Christian population belongs to indigenous Zionist and other independent churches. The Council of Swaziland Churches is an ecumenical organization founded in 1976 and includes the Roman Catholic Church, the Lutheran Church of Africa, Anglicans, Mennonites, and the African Methodist Episcopal Church. There are no WCC member churches based in this country.