Two days before we left Rwanda, we visited Bukonya. Bukonya is one of our Community Trade partner villages and the first community where Land of a Thousand Hills built a coffee wash station.
At Bukonya, Pastor Ildephonse had organized for us to meet Seraphine, a widow, a genocide survivor, and head of the local reconciliation group. By her side sat Onesphore - one of the very men that took the lives of innocent people in Bukonya during the 1994 genocide.
Onesphore went to prison for 15 years for his part in the genocide. When he was released, he returned to the site of his murders and begged forgives from Seraphine and the community. Incredibly they forgive him. How?
Seraphine, holding back her tears, told us how first and foremost she was called by God to forgive Onesphore and men like him. She told us how she felt sorry for him, that even though she had lost everything - he too returned from jail to find that everything he valued had been taken from him.
Today Seraphine and Onesphore work together in the village community farm, in peace - helping each other heal.
I asked Seraphine, what should we learn from their story. She reminded me that America has people of all colors and cultures, but what we look like is not important - first and foremost we are all children of God.