Rick Warren’s hosting of Rwandan president criticized
David Rogers | Staff Writer
California megachurch Saddleback has been criticized for its decision to host the Rwandan president in its church services.
Activists have questioned the church’s decision, led by Rick Warren, pictured above, to invite president Paul Kagame to speak. The church stated, “Join us as we join our Rwandan brothers and sisters in remembering the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi and thank God together for the renewal the country has experienced over the last 25 years.”
Activists are upset over the reports that the president has been blamed for denying Rwandans basic human rights.
Aristide Rwigara’s sister, Diane, ran against Kagame for president and was imprisoned along with her mother and sister after he came to power.
Rwigara told the Los Angeles Times: “Why would he give attention to someone who has closed thousands of churches and who has consistently denied human rights to his own people?
“This cannot go unchallenged. Warren is a global figure, and if you want to wear the mantle of spiritual leadership, why would you do this?
“I used to think he was the real deal, and then I found out that he backed the government — a government that stifles all manner of opposition, that has no humanity.”
Saddleback Church is a Baptist evangelical Christian megachurch located in Lake Forest, California, situated in southern Orange County. The church is affiliated with the Southern Baptist Convention. The church has several campuses in California and around the world. Weekly church attendance averages over 22,000 people.
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