One Widow in Rwanda Rebuilt her Life on God’s Word

After losing her husband in the 1994 genocide, a woman in Rwanda found hope for her life through the Bible.

More than 20 years have passed since a horrific genocide took the lives of 800,000 people in Rwanda. But for the 12 million Rwandans who live in the country now, scars from that traumatic massacre often hurt as painfully today as they did in 1994.

For one Rwandan woman named Ngwena, the genocide didn’t simply change her life forever; it sent her life into a tailspin. Ngwena’s husband was killed in the genocide. In the dark days that followed, Ngwena turned to a life of promiscuity as she attempted to cope with the loss of her husband. She felt devastated and hopeless.

All of that changed when Ngwena received her very first Bible. She discovered the good news of Jesus Christ and turned her broken life over to God. After providing Ngwena with the Bible, one worker from Bible Society of Rwanda noticed something rather odd: Ngwena held her new Bible tightly to her body in a warm hug.

When the Bible Society representative asked Ngwena why she hugged her Bible like this, Ngwena simply responded, “This is my new husband.” Through the transforming power of God’s Word, Ngwena had discovered a relationship with the Lord that filled her future with hope. Her new devotion to God opened up the possibility of healing from the tragic loss that altered her life all those years ago.

With support from partners like American Bible Society, Rwanda Bible Society reaches hurting Rwandans like Ngwena with God’s Word. “There is a great demand for Bibles,” says Rwanda Bible Society General Secretary Emmanuel Kayijuka, reflecting on the spiritual climate in Rwanda. He says that with God’s help, they have helped launch more than 1,000 New Testament reading groups in Rwanda.

Attendees say that Bible reading group helps them understand the Bible in a whole new way and equips them to share God’s Word with others. And as Ngwena can attest, the power of Scripture is changing lives in Rwanda, turning even the most painful stories into narratives of healing and hope. 

Thanks to the support of our faithful financial partners, American Bible Society has been engaging people with the life-changing message of God’s Word for more than 200 years.

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