What Role Did Catholics Play in Rwandan Genocide?

Saturday, August 21, 2010 \AM\.\Sat\.

  (from anarkismo.net) (photo)

I was watching the documentary “Shake Hands With The Devil:  The Journey of Romeo Dallaire” tonight, and there were disturbing charges made against the Catholic Church concerning the role of Catholics and the local and Vatican Hierarchies in doing little or nothing to reduce the factional tensions.  Here is an article that makes a more direct case against our fellow Catholics  http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2010/mar/29/pope-catholics-rwanda-genocide-church

I am one who believes that the official teachings and the Sacraments of the Catholic Church are the places of security for us as Christian believers, but the administrative decisions and the actions of individual Catholic laity/clergy are not protected from error or sin by the Holy Spirit. So, I would like to know more about the role of my brother and sister Catholics in the lead-up to (and direct actions), during the genocide of 1994.  Was the Catholic Hierarchy in Rwanda (as well the representatives of the Vatican) teaching a vigorous message of non-violence, anti-tribalism, and informing the global community of the scope of the man-made horrors in the attempt to bring in the international community to halt the spread of violence?  I want to know because I often feel that we Catholics are our own worst enemies in what we do and what we fail to do as ambassadors for Christ and His Church.  But I don’t want to jump to hasty conclusions that unfairly charge fellow Catholics with horrible accusations.  So, does anyone know more about all of this? Is there a need to acknowledge some more self-inflicted Catholic damage to the mission of promoting the Good News? Or should we be defending the overall Catholic effect before, during, and after the genocide?

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