Thursday, May 21, 2009

Rwanda On My Mind

My sweet friend Sarah is on mission trip to Rwanda this week and next, so I've been praying for her a lot these past few days (and of course the Pat Green/Texas On My Mind reference is in her honor!). I even made an "Africa" playlist on my Pod to listen to while she's away! I'm especially excited about her time in Rwanda because that's where my Food for the Hungry sponsored child, Nishimwe, lives! (You can find out more about Nishimwe and FH's ministry here.) Look for more of Sarah's stories from the road when she returns...

As if my heart weren't a little bit in Rwanda this week anyway (because of Sarah and Nishimwe), my roommate told me last night about the coolest story I've heard in a long time. A Furman grad she knows from college has made a documentary called As We Forgive that's playing tonight in Nashville and this weekend in Franklin about the aftermath of the Rwanda racial genocide. Apparently, the government has released roughly 50,000 Hutu war criminals because of insufficient funds to continue paying for their incarceration. But where are these men--who are responsible for the brutal rape and murder of hundreds of thousands of Tutsi citizens-- supposed to live? Among the family members of their victims, in the villages where they lived before the genocide. It is a horrific thing, but in the midst of such terrible circumstances, Tutsis are choosing to forgive. It's an End of the Spear kind of story, except instead of four families, it's many families. Reconcilliation is healing Rwanda. You can learn more about the film and its makers (and the accompanying book by the same title) here.

Immediately after I read the Furman alumni magazine's article on As We Forgive last night, I received an e-mail from my second cousin, Karen. She and her husband are in the process of adopting a precious little girl from China, and she informed me that they are considering a second adoption through a program in Rwanda! This is exciting news because I've never heard of anyone adoptiong from the war ravaged country...I think it has probably been pretty difficult in the past, so I'm encouraged to learn that perhaps God is making a way--and that my family members will be part of the process of Rwandan healing! You can read Karen's blog here.

And here's another cool tidbit: DailyCandy, an e-mail service that alerts subscribers to great deals and fun things to do in various large cities, sent a plug for Blue Marble ice cream. The NY based ice creamery is planning to open a philanthropic shop in Rwanda, of all places! Read more and donate here. (You may have to register your e-mail before you can view the link, but the e-mails are amazing, so it's worth it!)

The way God brings things to our attention is so profound to me. I'm praying for Rwanda, for His Spirit to be made known there more and more, and for eyes to see how I'm called to be a part of what He's doing.


mowens said...

Funny that you think of Pat Green/Texas on my mind. My first thought was James Taylor/Carolina OMM, then Ray Charles/Georgia/OMM.

Chelsea said...

haha, Sarah listened to that song a lot the year before she moved to Waco! So I associate it with her being in Texas :)

Sarah said...

Chelsea, I meant to comment on this I long time ago and I realized I never did. I was so touched by it! I love you!