Some people ask what is the religious make up of Rwanda. These pictures below are from a parade this past Friday of a Roman Catholic parade, for a youth conference. They serve as a reminder that Rwanda is still a very Roman Catholic country.
According to the latest Operation World (a great book, by the way), 45 % of Rwandans are Roman Catholic, 36% Protestant, and 5 % Muslim. Bahai, Jehovah’s Witness, ethnoreligions,unaffiliated and other groups make up the rest. Rwanda was settled by the Belgians, after a brief period of German colonization, and with the Belgians came a very strong affiliation with the Roman Catholic church; it was the state church, in effect. The RC church fell into some disrepute due to their heavy involvement in the genocide, though no denomination was exempt. We appreciate the care that the Roman Catholic church gives to the poor and the handicapped. Several of the handicapped students we support attend Roman Catholic schools.We pray for our Roman brothers and sisters, that we may be united in knowing the love of Christ and the price he paid for us, once and for all, on the Cross.
Here are a few pictures of the Newborn Intensive Care Unit at Ruhengeri Hospital. I happened to take them for a grant we are applying for and I’d like to share them. Rwanda has made great strides in decreasing childhood mortality, but has found the newborn (first 28 days of life) mortality more difficult to decrease. We pray for the human and financial resources and spiritual changes that are needed to help these little ones live. (Why spiritual resources? I’ll answer that in a future blog!)