Orphan of Genocide

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Orphan of Genocide
RWANDA | November 16
Delphine Uwinez, 25

My parents died in the 1994 genocide in Rwanda. I was one.

My earliest memories were of weeping over the loss of my parents in a Christian orphanage. I repeatedly asked the staff members when I could see my mother.

“You’ll see her,” they assured me.

I thought my mother had gone somewhere and waited for her return. But as time passed, I felt more hopeless.

Among the staff members were women designated as substitute mothers. Mine was a Seventh-day Adventist named Brigitte. My new mother took me to church, and I liked the change of atmosphere. Church members were kind.

But the government closed all orphanages when I was 7, and I was adopted by a family. I expected the family to brighten my life, but the opposite happened.

Initially, the family treated me with affection. They had a daughter named Mutesi who was my age. This added to my happiness because I expected her parents to love me as they loved her. They didn’t.

In the morning, I had to clean the house and fetch water before school. The chores made me late for classes, and the teacher punished me with beatings. Sometimes the teacher ordered me to return home, but I had to wait outside the school building until classes ended to walk home with my adopted sister.

My new mother knew that she was the cause of my problems, but she didn’t do anything about it.

Soon, she began to express her hatred openly. She refused to feed me at mealtime and ordered me to stop calling her mother.

“I’m not your biological mother,” she said.

Mutesi, unlike her mother, loved me. She wept when she saw me being mistreated. She gave me her food and milk, even though her mother scolded her for sharing. Mutesi’s father also loved me.

Everything came to a head at the end of the school year when I was 13. I passed my exams, but Mutesi didn’t. When we returned home that day, Mutesi’s mother threw me out of the house. Fortunately, other families with orphans took pity on me and took me in over the next few years. The government also helped. I never finished high school.

As I grew into a young adult, life seemed increasingly hopeless. I hated everybody, and I was convinced that everybody hated me. I wondered whether God knew me, and I hated Him. I tried to commit suicide by drinking too much alcohol but failed.

One day, I was walking in the street in the town of Nyamata when I heard a preacher’s voice booming over loudspeakers. The preacher, Frederic Musoni, was conducting evangelistic meetings at a Seventh-day Adventist church.

“Do you want to be made whole?” he asked. It sounded as if he were speaking directly to me. I listened for a while. I sensed a voice saying to my heart, “Be of good comfort. I love you.”

When the preacher made an appeal, the voice spoke again to my heart, and I responded. Inside the church, the preacher prayed for me, and I went home filled with joy. That night I slept peacefully for the first time in my life.

I was baptized with about 150 other people at the end of the evangelistic meetings. We were among a record-breaking 110,000 people baptized after three-week meetings at 2,027 sites across Rwanda in May 2016.

When I came out of the baptism waters, I felt peace and freedom in my heart. I began to love others, and I realized that God had never forsaken me. I love Jesus who died for me and I believe He will give me back my parents.

Today, I am 25, and I make and sell handicrafts.

If you are a parent in a comfortable home, please care for a needy child. Avoid saying angry words to a child because, even after growing up, the child will never forget what he or she heard.

If you are suffering, perhaps because you, like me, were not raised by your parents, know that peace lies only in allowing Jesus to be your all in all. Jesus is the true Parent, Comforter and peaceful rest.

Andrew McChesney

Story Tips
Ask a young woman to read this first-hand account.
Know that Delphine was further traumatized by visiting the Kigali Genocide Memorial Site as a high school student. After seeing the horrors of the genocide, she didn’t speak for six months. When she started to speak again, her voice had changed permanently.
Watch a YouTube video of Delphine: bit.ly/Delphine-Uwinez.
Download medium-resolution photos for this story from our Facebook page: bit.ly/fb-mq. Photos are uploaded on Sundays, six days before the mission story is to be presented.
Download high-resolution photos and more from the ADAMS databank: bit.ly/Orphan-of-Genocide
Download high-resolution photos of Thirteenth Sabbath projects from ADAMS: bit.ly/ECD-projects-2019

Fast Facts
Rwanda is a rural country, with about 90 percent of the population engaged in mainly subsistence agriculture.
Rwanda is one of only three countries in Africa where you can visit Mountain Gorillas in the wild. Gorillas are the most common apes in the central African region, which encompasses the western part of Rwanda. Gorilla tourism is a major activity that earns Rwanda millions of dollars a year.


“အစုလိုက္သတ္ျဖတ္ရာမွမိဘမဲ့၊ဖတဆိုး၊မိတဆိုးမ်ား၏အေျခအေန”

ႏိုဝင္ဘာလ(၁၆)ရက္၊ ေရးသားသူ-Delphine Uwinez(၂၅)ႏွစ္၊ရြင္းဒါႏိုင္ငံ၊

ရြင္းဒါႏိုင္ငံမွာ၊၁၉၉၄ လူမ်ိဳးတစ္မ်ိဳးလံုးအစုလိုက္အၿပံဳလိုက္သတ္ျဖတ္ရာတြင္ကြ်န္မရဲ႕
မိဘေတြဟာေသဆံုးခဲ့ရပါတယ္။ မိဘမဲ့ေက်ာင္းတစ္ေက်ာင္းမွာ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕မိဘေတြကိုလြမ္းလြန္း
လို႔ငိုခဲ့ရတဲ့အခ်ိန္ေတြကိုျပန္လည္သတိရမိပါတယ္။ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕ မိဘေတြကိုဘယ္ေတာ့ေတြ႕ရမလဲလို႔
မိဘမဲ့ေက်ာင္းမွဝန္ထမ္းေတြကို ဆက္ကာဆက္ကာကြ်န္မေမးခဲ့ပါတယ္။

“တစ္ေန႔က်ရင္ သူမကိုျပန္ေတြ႕ရမွာပါ”လို႔သူတို႔ကကြ်န္မကိုအားေပးခဲ့ၾကပါတယ္။
ကြ်န္မရဲ႕အေမဟာ တစ္ေနရာရာမွာသြားခဲ့တယ္လို႔ထင္ခဲ့ျပီး၊ သူမျပန္လာမွာကိုေစာင့္
ေမွ်ာ္ေနခဲ့ပါတယ္။ ဒါေပမယ့္၊အခ်ိန္ဟာကုန္လြန္သြားသလို ကြ်န္မလည္းေမွ်ာ္လင့္ခ်က္ကင္းမဲ့စြာ
ျဖင့္ပိုျပီးခံစားလာခဲ့ရပါတယ္။

ဝန္ထမ္းေတြထဲမွအမ်ိဳးသမီးတစ္ခ်ိဳ႕ဟာ မိခင္မဲ့သူေတြေနရာမွာအစားထိုးျပီးမိခင္တာ
ဝန္ကိုထမ္းေဆာင္ခဲ့ၾကပါတယ္။ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕အစားထိုးမိခင္ကေတာ့၊ေျမာ္လင့္ျခင္းအသင္းသူႀမငါငငအန
ျဖစ္ျပီး၊ကြ်န္မကိုဘုရားေက်ာင္းသို႔ေခၚခဲ့ပါတယ္။ အသင္းသားေတြဟာသနားၾကင္နာတတ္လို႔အဲဒီ
အသင္းေတာ္မွာ ကြ်န္မေပ်ာ္ရႊင္ခဲ့မိပါတယ္။

ဒါေပမဲ့၊ကြ်န္မ(၇)ႏွစ္အရြယ္မွာအစိုးရကေန မိဘမဲ့ေက်ာင္းအားလံုးကိုပိတ္ခဲ့ျပီး၊ကြ်န္မကို
မိသားစုတစ္စုကေမြးစားခဲ့ပါတယ္။ အဲဒီမိသားစုဟာ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕အနာဂတ္ကိုပိုမိုဖြံ႕ျဖိဳးတိုးတက္ေအာင္
ကူညီမယ္လို႔ေမွ်ာ္လင့္ခဲ့ေပမဲ့၊တျခားစီျဖစ္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။

အစပိုင္းမွာေတာ့၊သူတို႔မိသားစုက ခ်င္ခင္ၾကင္နာစြာနဲ႔ဆက္ဆံခဲ့ၾကပါတယ္။သူတို႔မွာ
ကြ်န္မအရြယ္ေလာက္ရွိတဲ့ Mutesi လို႔ေခၚတဲ့သမီးတစ္ဦးရွိပါတယ္။သူတို႔ရဲ႕သမီးကိုမိဘေတြက
ခ်စ္သလို၊ကြ်န္မကိုလည္းခ်စ္မယ္လို႔ေမွ်ာ္လင့္ခဲ့ေပမယ့္၊ကြ်န္မကိုသူတို႔မခ်စ္ၾကပါဘူး။

မနက္ပိုင္းမွာကြ်န္မက အိမ္သန္႔ရွင္းေရးလုပ္ရျပီး၊ေက်ာင္းမသြားခင္မွာေရခပ္ခဲ့ရပါတယ္။
အိမ္မႈကိစၥေတြေၾကာင့္ ေက်ာင္းစာသင္ခန္းကိုေရာက္တာေနာက္က်လို႔ ဆရာမကကြ်န္မကိုတုတ္နဲ႕
႐ိုက္ႏွက္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။ တစ္ခါတေလ၊ဆရာမကကြ်န္မကိုအိမ္ျပန္ခိုင္းခဲ့ပါတယ္။ ဒါေပမဲ့၊ကြ်န္မကို
ေမြးစားတဲ့ညီမနဲ႔အတူ အိမ္ျပန္ရမွာမို႔လို႔ေက်ာင္းဆင္းတဲ့အထိေက်ာင္းရဲ႕ အျပင္မွာပဲေစာင့္ရမွာ
ျဖစ္ပါတယ္။

ကြ်န္မရဲ႕ျပႆနာဟာ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕အေမအသစ္ေၾကာင့္ျဖစ္ေပမယ့္၊ဘာမွျပဳျပင္ျခင္းမလုပ္
ခဲ့ပါဘူး။

သူမရဲ႕အမွားကိုျပဳျပင္မယ့္အစား၊ကြ်န္မကိုမုန္းတီးေၾကာင္းပြင့္ပြင့္လင္းလင္းေျပာခဲ့ပါ
ေတာ့တယ္။ ကြ်န္မကိုအစာမေကြ်းေတာ့တဲ့အျပင္၊အေမလို႔မေခၚဖို႔လည္းအမိန္႔ေပးခဲ့ပါေတာ့တယ္။

“ကြ်န္မဟာသင့္ရဲ႕မိခင္အရင္းမဟုတ္ဘူး”လို႔ေျပာလာပါေတာ့တယ္။

သူတို႔ရဲ႕သမီးMutesi ကေတာ့၊သူ႔အေမလိုမဟုတ္ပဲကြ်န္ကိုခ်စ္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။ကြ်န္မဟာ
ႏွိပ္စက္ျခင္းကိုခံရတဲ့အခါတိုင္းမွာ၊Mutesiဟာငိုျပီးသူမရဲ႕အစားအစာနဲ႔ႏြားႏို႔ကိုအေမကမေဝမွ်
ေပးဖို႔ဆူပူၾကိမ္းေမာင္းေပမဲ့ ေဝမွ်ေပးခဲ့ပါတယ္။ Mutesiရဲ႕အေဖကလည္းကြ်န္ကိုမခ်စ္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။

ကြ်န္မ(၁၃)ႏွစ္အရြယ္မွာ၊ကြ်န္မစာေမးပြဲကိုေအာင္ခဲ့ေပမယ့္Mutesi ဟာက်ခဲ့လို႔အေမက
ကြ်န္မကိုအိမ္ကေမာင္းထုတ္ခဲ့ပါေတာ့တယ္။ ကံေကာင္းလို႔မိဘမဲ့ကေလးေတြကိုျပဳစုေကြ်းေမြးတဲ့
အျခားမိသားစုက ကြ်န္မကိုသနားျပီးသံုးႏွစ္ေလာက္ေကြ်းေမြးျပဳစုခဲ့ၾကတဲ့အျပင္၊အစိုးရကေနလည္း
ကူညီပံ့ပိုးခဲ့ပါတယ္။ အထက္တန္းေက်ာင္းကိုဘယ္ေသာအခါမွ် ကြ်န္မ မေအာင္ႏိုင္ခဲ့ေတာ့ပါ။

ကြ်န္မလူလတ္အ႐ြယ္ေရာက္လာေပမဲ့၊ ပိုျပီးေတာ့မွေမွ်ာ္လင့္ခ်က္ကင္းမဲ့သလိုျဖစ္ခဲ့ပါ
တယ္။ ကြ်န္မကလူတိုင္းကိုမုန္းသလိုလူတိုင္းကကြ်န္မကိုလည္း မုန္းၾကတယ္လို႔ယံုၾကည္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။
ဘုရားသခင္က ကြ်န္မကို တကယ္သိပါ့မလားဆိုျပီး မုန္းခဲ့ပါတယ္။ မိမိကိုယ္ကိုသတ္ေသဖို႔
အရက္ကိုအလြန္အကြ်ံေသာက္ခဲ့ေပမယ့္လည္း မေအာင္ျမင္ခဲ့ပါဘူး။

တစ္ေန႔က်ေတာ့၊ နီယာမာတာ ျမိဳ႕ငယ္ရဲ႕လမ္းမၾကီးေပၚမွာလမ္းေလွ်ာက္ေနခ်ိန္၊အသံခ်ဲ႕
စက္ကေနတရားေဟာဆရာရဲ႕တရားေဟာသံကိုၾကားခဲ့ရပါတယ္။ တရားေဟာဆရာFrederic
Musoniဟာ၊ေျမာ္လင့္ျခင္းအသင္းေတာ္ဘုရားေက်ာင္းမွာ တရားပြဲျပဳလုပ္က်င္းပခဲ့ပါတယ္။

“လံုးလံုးလ်ားလ်ား ေျပာင္းလဲခ်င္ပါသလား”လို႔ လူတိုင္းကိုေမးခဲ့ပါေတာ့တယ္။
ကြ်န္မကို တရားေဟာဆရာက တိုက္႐ိုက္ေမးသလိုခံစားခဲ့ရပါတယ္။ ကြ်န္မခဏတျဖဳတ္
ရပ္ျပီးနားေထာင္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။ ကြ်န္မႏွလံုးသားထဲမွာ၊”သက္ေတာင့္သက္သာရွိပါေစ။ သင့္ကိုငါ
ခ်စ္ပါတယ္” ဆိုတဲ့စကားသံကိုၾကားေယာင္ေနမိခဲ့ပါတယ္။

တရားေဟာဆရာက ဆံုးျဖတ္ခ်က္ကိုေတာင္းခံတဲ့အခါ ကြ်န္မလည္းလက္ေထာင္ခဲ့ပါ
တယ္။ ဘုရားေက်ာင္းထဲမွာပဲ တရားေဟာဆရာကဆုေတာင္းေပးခဲ့တဲ့အတြက္ဝမ္းေျမာက္ဝမ္းသာ
စြာျဖင့္အိမ္သို႔ျပန္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။ ကြ်န္မရဲ႕အသက္တာမွာအဲဒီညမွာ ပထမဆံုးအၾကိမ္ ျငိမ္းခ်မ္းစြာ
အိပ္ေပ်ာ္ႏိုင္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။

တရားပြဲအဆံုးမွာ အျခားလူ(၁၅၀)နဲ႔အတူကြ်န္မေရႏွစ္ျခင္းခံယူခဲ့ပါတယ္။ ၂၀၁၆ခုႏွစ္၊
ေမလမွာ ႐ြင္းဒါႏိုင္ငံတစ္ႏိုင္ငံလံုးရဲ႕ ေနရာေပါင္း၂၀၁၇ေနရာမွာ၊သီတင္းသံုးပတ္တရားပြဲအျပီး
ေရႏွစ္ျခင္းခံသူအမ်ားဆံုးျဖစ္တဲ့အေယာက္ (၁၁၀ဝ၀ဝ) ထဲမွာကြ်န္မတို႔ပါဝင္ခဲ့ပါတယ္။

ကြ်န္မဟာ ေရထဲကေနထြက္လာတဲ့အခါ၊ ကြ်န္မႏွလံုးသားထဲမွာျငိမ္းခ်မ္းမႈနဲ႔လြတ္လပ္
မႈကိုခံစားခဲ့ရပါတယ္။ သူတစ္ပါးကို ကြ်န္မခ်စ္တတ္လာျပီး၊ဘုရားသခင္ဟာကြ်န္မကိုဘယ္ေသာ
အခါမွ်မစြန္႔လႊတ္ေၾကာင္း နားလည္သေဘာေပါက္လာခဲ့ပါတယ္။

ယေန႔၊ကြ်န္မဟာအသက္(၂၅)ႏွစ္ရွိျပီး၊ကြ်န္မလက္နဲ႔လုပ္တဲ့အရာေတြကိုေရာင္းခ်ခဲ့
ပါတယ္။

ႏွစ္သိမ့္ေစတဲ့အိမ္မွာေနထိုင္တဲ့ မိဘေတြျဖစ္ပါကဆင္းရဲတဲ့ကေလးေတြကိုေက်းဇူးျပဳ
ျပီး၊ၾကည့္႐ႈေစာင့္ေ႐ွာက္ပါ။ ေဒါသထြက္တဲ့စကားေတြကိုကေလးေတြအားမေျပာပါနဲ႔။ ဘာလို႔လဲဆို
ေတာ့၊အ႐ြယ္ေရာက္ျပီးေနာက္မွာလည္း သူၾကားခဲ့ရတဲ့စကားေတြကိုဘယ္ေတာ့မွမမွတ္မိဘဲေနမွာ
မဟုတ္ပါဘူး။

ကြ်န္မလိုပဲမိမိရဲ႕မိဘေတြက မၾကည့္႐ႈမေစာင့္ေ႐ွာက္ပါပဲ သင္တို႔ဟာဒုကၡေဝဒနာနဲ႔
ရင္ဆိုင္ေနရပါက၊သင့္ရဲ႕အသက္တာတစ္ေလွ်ာက္လံုးမွာခရစ္ေတာ္ကိုဦးေဆာင္လမ္းျပခိုင္းမွသာ
ျငိမ္းခ်မ္းမႈရရွိမယ္ဆိုတာကို သိရွိနားလည္ၾကပါ။ သခင္ေယ႐ႈဟာမွန္တဲ့မိဘ၊ႏွစ္သိမ့္ေပးသူနဲ႔ျငိမ္း
ခ်မ္းစြာအနားယူရာျဖစ္ပါတယ္။ ဒီအပတ္Delphine ရဲ႕သက္ေသခံခ်က္ေလးကဒီေလာက္ပါဘဲ။
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