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U.S., Rwanda Civil Wars

A letter from Kay Day in the U.S., on Interpretation Assignment from Rwanda

September 2016

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Dear Friends and Family,

On September 26 I will return to Rwanda for four more years. This is an answer to prayer. Since April I have been visiting with many of you and sharing stories of what God is doing in Rwanda through you and your support for the ministry there. I have been blessed by times of fellowship and laughter, times of deep reflection together. Thank you. This month I will focus most of my visits in Kiskiminetas Presbytery, a partner with Gitarama Presbytery in Rwanda, and in saying goodbye and thank you to several of you who have been close to me these last six months.

Antietam, site of the bloodiest day of the U.S. Civil War

Antietam, site of the bloodiest day of the U.S. Civil War

August afforded some time for family visits and for a few days of relaxation and reflecting. I spent two days on Civil War battlefields, a passion of mine. As I walked some of the Antietam and Gettysburg battlegrounds, I was struck by some of the similarities of what I know of the genocide in Rwanda. Both conflicts were civil wars, and both found relatives fighting on different sides, friends divided by a conflict of values, of allegiances, and of local identities. Both split their countries and left scars, not only on the landscapes, but deep within the people. The ground has healed. The landscapes are green and peaceful in both countries. While one conflict was over 150 years ago and the other a mere 22 years ago, the memory is still deep in those places where lives were lost. The haunting sense of those who died remains at memorials to the victims of both conflicts. Their spirits seem to cry out to those who visit to remember the dead, to remember the pain of the conflict and to not repeat it. It is the crying out to learn from the pain and the loss that struck me most during these

Land surrounding Murambi Memorial in Rwanda

Land surrounding Murambi Memorial in Rwanda

visits. I had that same sense in Rwanda when I visited the National Genocide Memorial in Kigali and the Murambi Memorial. Over the spirit of the dead I heard the words of the apostle Paul calling us to be ambassadors for Christ, to be agents of reconciliation where there was once division (2 Cor. 5). There are still so many situations in both countries that cry out for reconciliation. I sensed that so strongly, standing amid the spirits of the past battles. I think it is a call to all who will listen.

Pray with me for God’s direction for each of us so that we might bring peace instead of division to the situations of our lives. Pray, too, for me during these last weeks before I return, that I may make the most of the time I have. I want to thank those of you who have committed to continue to partner with me in the ministry in Rwanda with finances and with prayers. I still have a good amount of my financial support to gather, so please pray with me for that, too. I pray September brings renewed clarity of mission to you as it has to me.

Yours in Christ,
Kay (Cathie to the family)

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