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Roman Catholic Leaders Complicit In Rwanda Massacre? Why Weren’t We Told This Before?

Posted by Job on March 15, 2008

ARUSHA, Tanzania – A Rwandan priest has been jailed for life after a U.N. tribunal extended his sentence for ordering militiamen to burn and bulldoze a church with 1,500 people inside. The International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda’s ruling came after Roman
Catholic priest Athanase Seromba appealed his 2006 conviction, a statement posted on the body’s Web site late Wednesday said. He was originally sentenced to 15 years in prison.

The tribunal is trying the alleged masterminds of the 1994 Rwandan genocide in which more than 500,000 minority Tutsis and moderate Hutus were killed by Hutu extremists over a 100-day period. The tribunal said it convicted Seromba for “his role in the destruction of the church in Nyange Parish, and the consequent death of approximately 1,500 Tutsi refugees sheltering inside.”

Seromba was convicted of leading a militia that attacked the people and poured fuel through the roof of the church, while police threw grenades inside. After failing to kill everybody inside the church, Seromba ordered it to be demolished, the tribunal found.

Thousands of Rwandans have turned away from Catholicism, angered and saddened by the complicity of church officials in the genocide. Priests, nuns and followers were implicated in the killings and some churches were sites of notorious massacres.

The Rwanda war crimes tribunal has delivered 32 judgments, including five acquittals, since the U.N. Security Council established it in November 1994. There are 27 trials under way.


10 Responses to “Roman Catholic Leaders Complicit In Rwanda Massacre? Why Weren’t We Told This Before?”

  1. Looks like the cult of Mary is keeping its old “traditions”: The Disappearance Using Vatican Rat Lines

    The real question to be answered is if more than Athanase Seromba knew about this.

  2. Oh this dirt trail is getting longer the more I research it!

    Church ‘hides’ Rwandan priest in Italy

    And how did he get away with working in the cult under a new name?

    Rwandan Priest Sentenced to 15 Years for Allowing Deaths of Tutsi in Church

    After the massacre, Father Seromba fled Rwanda, changed his name to Anastasio Sumba Bura and worked as a priest in two parishes near Florence, Italy. He surrendered to the tribunal on Feb. 6, 2002, and pleaded not guilty to the charges against him.

    I don’t believe just anybody can walk into one of the cult’s buildings, claim to be one of their “priests” and be accepted. There had to be collusion.

  3. Job said


    With this, my issue is not so much that Roman Catholics were involved, but rather that the media never spoke of their involvement. Now we know that the Tutsis were Christian. The question is whether they were Protestant …

  4. Well the media spoke about it, just not very loudly. And it seems the news sources closer to the African continent were more on detailed stories like this than the US press.

  5. Job said


    “Well the media spoke about it, just not very loudly.” Wow, I followed the Rwanda story as closely as I could (albeit mostly through the old media as I was just starting to use the Internet at that time) and in the years thereafter and never heard a hint of this. I only heard about “Hutu power” and the role of colonialism. It is curious that the Christian angle was not explored even though this gave the God haters another excuse to claim “Christianity equals genocide!” Then again, the Christian angle to the Bosnia/Serbia/Kosovo incident was not publicly spoken of by the media either. At the time, everyone even Rush Limbaugh, was supporting the Bosnians and Albanians. Limbaugh even stated that Clinton was weak and bowing to bigotry because of his refusal to arm the Muslims so that they could defend themselves! (I was a Limbaugh fan at the time!) I was particularly pro – Bosnian when I saw the Russian nationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky come out in favor of the Serbs! It wasn’t until I heard a Tallahassee right wing radio talk show host caller explain the religious angle – and the land angle – to it that I found out that the whole “these people have been fighting each other for hundreds of years!” thing was a lie, but rather that it was a recent development of Muslims attempting to overrun another country and then claim a piece of it as their own Muslim state. And guess what … Clinton brought 200,000 of those people that were more than happy to steal someone else’s land into THIS COUNTRY. I saw a Parade Magazine article mentioning how one of them, now 18, was claiming to be so alienated with America because America did not allow him to worship his religion the way that he was supposed to. Meaning of course that his religious worship was being hindered by America not being a Muslim nation of the sort that his people were trying to turn Kosovo into, and apparently have succeeded in doing!

  6. Well it all depends on your definition of “media” and “before”. If by “before” you mean just after it occurred, well then it would depend on what reporters heard about. I’m sure in that mass of killing there are a lot of various stories. If by media you mean all news sources, a BBC article I cited above is dated 2001, when the UN war crimes tribunal was looking for him and discovered he was hiding in Italy.

    I can’t fault the media, because I don’t even know if the media knew back in the 1990’s about this incident. And for a secular media, it was all part of the “mass of bodies” at the time.

    It is curious that the Christian angle was not explored even though this gave the God haters another excuse to claim “Christianity equals genocide!”

    Why do you expect the secular media to do so? They are “secular”. If more of them knew of an opportunity to bash Christianity via confusing it with the cult Mary, they probably would have taken it. But they are secular, so they act as they are.

    You realize Rush is not where you are regarding a walk with Christ, so you should not be surprised at his stance at the time. Even we were not where we are now back then. We are seeing how we have been played for literally much of our lives regarding our faith, but many don’t see it.

    Hey, the US Congress has 2 Muslims now. They have their foothold in US government and are only working to expand it.

  7. Scarlet said

    Now we know that the Tutsis were Christian. The question is whether they were Protestant …

    Rwanda, like most of Belgian’s former colonies, had Catholicism as their main (and in the case of Rwanda-Urundi, only) Christian religion. The RCC was, in fact, the main instigator behind the decision to create the artificial ethnic divide of Tutsi, Hutu, and Twa. The Tutsi monarch Mwami Mutari III became the first Tutsi monarch to convert Catholicism, paving the way for the RCC to establish their brand of Christianity over all others. Hutu Catholic activists were strongly involved in the Tutsi/Hutu civil war (some sources finger them as the actual agitators that escalated the Tutsi/Hutu rivalry), leading up to Belgian’s eventual decision to split Rwanda-Urundi (as it was then known) into the Republic of Rwanda and the Constitutional Monarchy of Burundi in 1962. I don’t think I have to rehash the long, bloody race wars that led to the Rwandan Genocide of 1994. Suffice it to say that the RCC has a lot to answer for regarding its role in that genocide, and somehow I don’t think we’ll be hearing it anytime soon.

  8. Van Glorious said

    The Catholic Church has been involved in most genocides as far as I can tell. From the Nazis in Germany, the Oustachi in Croatia, Rwanda….just up to their old tricks…the lack of media coverage shows the power Rome has

  9. Anonomous said


  10. kingsley said

    What is theology ?

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