He was tall, handsome, educated and strong. And yet he was unable to save their lives. I was early to meet the team at Quay 4, a restaurant in Cape Town, South Africa, so he and I began talking.
His name is Germain. I’ve written about him before. His family was murdered in the Democratic Republic of Congo--a country with supposed peace after five years of Civil War. Unfortunately, even after the signing of several peace treaties and cease-fires, tensions still exist. Homes are ransacked. Women and their daughters are raped. People are being killed.
Germain’s wife and two little girls are only three of the hundreds upon hundreds of people killed.
My friend Hilaire is from DRC, and he’s managed to get out and enroll in a PhD program in Canada. His life was threatened constantly when he was there. Financial supporters and friends were able to get him out of danger. Unfortunately, his family was not able to get away. They are still there being harassed, attacked and threatened.
I pray that Hilaire does not have to adopt Germain’s story. I pray that his family is able to find asylum somewhere. Anywhere but there.
Learn more about DRC.
Photograph of the Peace Pole was taken at Regina Mundi Church in Soweto, a beautiful place of grace and reconciliation. This church played a strong role in the anti-apartheid movement even after police fired mercilessly on a group of students gathered in the church for sanctuary and conversations about the movement. The church is a sign that peace is possible.