Over the last three decades, there has been a growing international recognition of the nexus between conflict, peace and development. Violent conflict hinders economic and human development, perpetuating chronic poverty among the large population of poor countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, whereas deplorable conditions in such poverty-stricken countries make them more unstable, and thus susceptible to violent conflict.
Participants Attending the Workshop
The challenges of preventing violent conflict, ensuring sustainable development, and building a durable peace are inextricably interwoven.
Recognizing the critical importance of these interlinked challenges in Rwanda and the Great Lakes Region (GLR), the community of Protestant Churches in Rwanda has established the Department of Peace and Conflict Studies as one of the departments hosted in the Faculty of Development Studies (FDS) at Protestant Institute of Arts and Social Sciences (PIASS).
In collaboration with Mercy Ministries International (MMI), this Department of Peace and Conflict Studies (DPCS organized a workshop on "Healing the Wound of Conflict" on May 2 -4 at its main campus in Huye. Thanks to very experienced facilitators from MMI, 30 participants, mainly from the DPCS and the Faculty of Theology and Religious Studies had great learning and healing experiences during the 3-day workshop.
The workshop aimed to help participants to:
- Explore beliefs and prejudices that have arisen from personal and secondary experiences and their role in destroying communities;
- Increase his/her awareness and understanding of positive aspects of diversity and ethnicity, the emotional and psychological effects of trauma, and the benefits of healing, forgiveness, and restored relationships; and
- Experience deeper healing.
The participants agreed that all Rwandans are wounded in many different ways and this kind of healing ministry must be expanded as an essential support to the people who are continuing their journey towards reconciliation.
Appreciation by one of the workshop participants
RUTEGIBIGENI Daniel (Level 5 theology student)
“During this workshop we learned many lesson related to the healing of the wounded people. The workshop helped me to remember what happened in my family and in my life in the past. Some of my wounds were healed. I was especially helped by those concepts that we have discussed which were about forgiveness and repentance as the way of reconciliation. I came to deeply understand that the journey towards reconciliation requires working together. Everyone needs another person to be healed. I have also learned that a person who is your offender is always attached to you unless you detach him from yourself by forgiving him and praying. The key is to put all that you have as burdens to the cross of Jesus Christ”
This workshop is very crucial for and relevant to our society which experienced Genocide, which caused deep wounds in the hearts of numerous Rwandans. So we need to spread this kind of training in our society in order to promote healing and reconciliation.
Would you have a question on such a topic? a comment or suggestion?
Please, feel free to contact Dr Kazuyuki Sasaki, the head of department of Peace and Conflicts Studies within PIASS, via ksasaHYPERLINK "mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org"email@example.com