Does this sound like a guy whose family has been slaughtered by his own rampaging countrymen?
“People think God is far away from us. He’s not! Jesus is one of us, not just among us — connected to you and to me. We have a saying: ‘God is watching us through the roof.’
“When they used to build houses with grass roofs they used to leave a little hole on top of the house so God could keep watching us. They did this even before they knew Christianity.”
You think you got troubles.
He’s Father Pascal Bigirimana, administrator of Saints Peter and Paul RC Parish on Chicago’s South Side, who lost his parents and three brothers and two of his three sisters and their spouses and children in genocidal killing in Rwanda in the ‘90s.
He hid under floorboards for a week while Hutus searched for him, a Tutsi. A Hutu nun said he had fled and was probably dead, and they left.
“Eventually the bishop came with some soldiers and took me to his residence. That’s how I escaped. It was a miracle. I thought I was already dead.”
The rest is at the excellent “5 Mins. with Father” Catholic New World feature, where the talk, crisply delivered, is more often about growing up in big families and being ordained and being a pastor. This time it’s about war and death and faith.