Do you know Immaculee?

If you haven’t heard of this woman or read this book you must. Immaculee Ilibagiza survived the Rwandan holocaust hidden in a bathroom for 91 days with 7 other women. I describe this book as the most beautiful and the most terrifying story I’ve ever read. You will fall in love with Immaculee and be inspired by her faith and grace in spite of the horrors she witnessed and lived through. All but one other member of her family was brutally murdered during the killing spree that was largely ignored by the rest of the world. On it’s face, her survival story would be enough. Try standing in a 3 x 4 foot bathroom by yourself. Then imagine standing there with 7 other people. Then imagine living there for nearly 3 months-all while trying to stay quiet so the rest of the household or the the killers who were still looking for you couldn’t hear you. But the survival isn’t the beginning or the end of her story.(Google Immaculee and click “images” you’ll see a picture of her sitting in the bathroom where she was hidden-not sure about copyrights so I didn’t copy it here) Clearly, God had other plans for her. Her faith, in particular-praying the rosary, is responsible for her survival and ultimate forgiveness of those who committed the atrocities. Miracles happened in that bathroom and afterward when she was liberated but still not safe.

I have to admit that I’m embarrassed that I didn’t even know what was going on at the time. The genocide happened in the spring of 1994. I was an adult working for a federal judge. How did I not know that people were being brutally murdered by their neighbors with machetes? It’s a powerful testimony for the effectiveness of propaganda and vitriole. I’m convinced it could happen anywhere. Just think how hateful and ugly people get when they talk about health care or taxes or the price of gas- let alone race and poverty and their rights!
Immaculee is a treasure and her story will change you.

If you do decided to buy her book, consider ordering it from her website because proceeds go to her foundation which helps Rwandan orphans.

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