I met Chris Rice in 2004 at the Lausanne Movement Conference in Pattaya, Thailand, where he was convenor of the Issue Group on Reconciliation.
He is presently co-director, with Emmanuel Katongole, of the Center for Reconciliation at Duke Divinity School. They have written together the book Reconciling All Things. A Christian Vision for Justice, Peace and Healing.
I highly recommend to those interested in this hot topic Chris’s blog, Reconcilers, that can be found HERE.
In order to get a taste of it, I would like to encourage you to read his post entitled We Think Our Bitterness Is Sweet, the story of Josephine Munyali, a survivor of the Rwandan genocide. Here is a fragment from this article:
As Josephine spoke to about forty of us Tuesday, what struck me most profoundly was the empathy she has come to have for many of the killers. “We think demons come from hell,” she said. “But [the killers] were regretting [as they were killing]. When you are forced to do something you don’t want to do, can you understand that kind of feeling?” Josephine’s own life was saved by one of the killers who went out of his way to protect her because he had met her on market day weeks before. But even while he protected her, he continued to kill others. “If I leave (the group) I’ll be killed” he told her.
Josephine was clear – such empathy is a journey. “I was very bitter,” she said. “There was poison in my heart. I couldn’t see the heart I had.” At a healing workshop “The words of Ezekiel came to me, ‘Comfort my people,’ says the Lord. “We think our bitterness is sweet. We don’t want to give it to God. But for me my bitterness became a burden and I thank God for that. God healed me so I can contribute to the healing of others.”