Clerics launch campaign against preaching hatred

Religious leaders have started a campaign to fight ethnically based hatred in Rwanda. The clergy disclosed this early this week, while preaching to thousands of Rwandans who had turned up to mourn their beloved ones, who died during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwamagana and Kayonza districts.

Religious leaders have started a campaign to fight ethnically based hatred in Rwanda.

The clergy disclosed this early this week, while preaching to thousands of Rwandans who had turned up to mourn their beloved ones, who died during the 1994 Genocide against the Tutsi in Rwamagana and Kayonza districts.

The clergy said during the Genocide, many Tutsis were massacred in and around places of worship, including Churches.

Pastor Constant Gasore said that it was a great paradox that churches in a country  that is predominantly Christian participated or remained passive as the Genocide occurred.

He noted that if religious leaders had been united and played their role in preaching peace, the Genocide wouldn’t have happened.

“Genocide is morally hideous, an evil expressed in forgetting God, and hence a form of atheism. We are committed to reverse the trend. We preach love and not hatred,” he said.

The stereotypes used by the Genocide regime to dehumanise Tutsi, were also spread by some influential clergymen, bishops and priests, before the Genocide.

According to Sheikh Hamdoun Nyiringabo, the only way to overcome the ruined history was to show Rwandans how valuable they are, in the presence of God.

He urged all religious leaders to participate in solving the country’s problems, including poverty, genocide ideology and family planning.

“We can’t change what happened in 1994, it is a bad history recorded... but we can determine a better future. When there is hatred, the present is doubtful and the future is doomed. The good thing is that pastors and sheikhs have vowed to carry the burden of restoring peace,” he said.

Jean Bosco Mugabo, a resident of Kayonza district, applauded the clergymen’s initiative, and reiterated the need for the church to preach peace.

“The religious leaders are on the right track...it is in the minds that the idea of hatred was hatched, we should use the mind again to reverse the evil thinking. We should support them,” he said.

Subscribe to The New Times E-Paper


You want to chat directly with us? Send us a message on WhatsApp at +250 788 310 999    

 

Follow The New Times on Google News