Friday’s gratitude: Niyitegeka Félicité, national heroine

The text (in French) by Mrs Mukundente Ariane

Today’s Friday of gratitude honours Mrs. Félicité Niyitegeka, our national heroine.

Félicité Niyitegeka was born in 1934 in Vumbi, in the former commune of Runyinya, Butare prefecture, now Huye. She attended primary school at Astrida School and continued her secondary education in Save in the nuns. As soon as she finished her studies, she became a teacher and supervisor at the secondary school of Muramba under the aegis of the Auxiliary of the Apostolate.

Coming from a Christian family, she was the first African to join the ranks of the Auxiliaries of the Apostolate, commonly called, in the local language, “Abakobwa ba Musenyeri”. At the same time, Monsignor Aloys Bigirumwami became the first Rwandan bishop of the recently created Vicariate of Nyundo. Mrs. Niyitegeka thus became auxiliary under the Apostolate of Monsignor Bigirumwami.

The latter sent her to a seminar in Lourdes at the World Training Center of the Auxiliaries of the Apostolate. Back in Rwanda, Mrs. Niyitegeka was appointed Manager of Lycée Notre-Dame d’Afrique in Nyundo. In 1963, in charge of other African auxiliaries, she accompanied them to Lourdes and spent six years there. After this long stay in France, she returned to Rwanda and was appointed Director of the Centre Saint Pierre, the diocesan center for trainings and retreat of the Auxiliaries of the Apostolate.

Mrs. Félicité Niyitegeka is a public figure known for heroically refusing to hand over to the militia the people who had taken refuge in her centre during the genocide against the Tutsis in April 1994. She experienced death at their side despite the intervention of her brother who was a soldier,who asked her to save herself. During this difficult period, she was able to serve this God to whom she had dedicated her life, until the ultimate sacrifice.Indeed, the Centre Saint-Pierre was a real refuge for the people who sheltered there. Everyone was welcome, and no one was ever pushed back.

Mrs. Niyitegeka, together with all the other Auxiliaries of the Apostolate, managed to feed the refugees with the products collected in the fields adjoining the Center. The Centre was also receiving many wounded and Ms. Niyitegeka was not afraid to brave the militiamen to get the necessary medicines to provide care.

Mrs. Niyitegeka looked for a way to evacuate as many people as possible to the Congo. By bribing the soldiers at the Gisenyi barrier, she managed to save about forty people. While attempting another evacuation on 20 April, Interahamwe militiamen stormed the Centre. He was ordered to separate from his protégés, but Mrs. Niyitegeka categorically refused to comply and even demanded that she be killed in their place..

Instead, they were loaded into a van that headed for “the Red Commune”, where several people were killed. Knowing that their fate was sealed, Mrs. Niyitegeka sang religious music and prayer. On the way, the militiamen begged her out, but she refused again. At the “Red Commune”, mass graves were already being dug.

Six Auxiliaries of the Apostolate and twenty-four people were coldly shot. Mrs. Niyitegeka was massacred last. After this despicable act, the bodies were all thrown into the pits.

Bravery was in her DNA and a family affair, as she is the older sister of another Friday’s Gratitude hero, Dr. Laurien Ntezimana. What an exceptional family! The latter had great admiration for his sister whom he described in these few words:

 “I venture to speak for the first time of my ‘Blessed’ Felicity. I call her blessed, not because she would have been proclaimed as such by the Catholic Church whom she loved as her Mother and for whom she surrendered herself body and soul, – The Church which will finally recognize her as holy, I have little doubt about it – I call her blessed simply because I consider her to be holy: during her lifetime, I have always seen her pacified and radiant, never dolent or dejected. I was not there at the time of his supreme testimony.

But I am absolutely certain that it was in a sublime moment of oblation, consciously and filled with gratitude, that she offered her life. Offered his life as a sign of refusal to be separated from those who had just been murdered. Offered her life also as a sign of protest against so much waste and to force the killers to become aware of their misdeeds. Did she manage to touch their hardened hearts? Surely, at least for a few who were astonished by so much “naivety” combined with so much fearlessness. »

What more can I say?

Simply: Félicitée Niyitegeka, niyubahwe!


73 thoughts on “Friday’s gratitude: Niyitegeka Félicité, national heroine

  1. Heya excellent website! Does running a blog like this
    take a lot of work? I have absolutely no expertise in programming
    but I had been hoping to start my own blog in the near future.

    Anyways, should you have any suggestions or tips for new blog owners
    please share. I understand this is off subject but I simply had to ask.
    Many thanks!

  2. We are a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme
    in our community. Your site offered us with valuable info to work
    on. You have done a formidable job and our entire community will be grateful to you.

  3. Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as though you
    relied on the video to make your point. You definitely know
    what youre talking about, why waste your intelligence on just posting videos to your site when you
    could be giving us something enlightening to read?

  4. I’ve been exploring for a little bit for any high-quality articles or blog posts on this kind of house .
    Exploring in Yahoo I at last stumbled upon this website.
    Reading this information So i’m satisfied to
    show that I have a very just right uncanny
    feeling I discovered exactly what I needed.
    I most undoubtedly will make sure to do not put out of
    your mind this web site and give it a look on a continuing basis.

  5. You could definitely see your enthusiasm within the article
    you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid
    to say how they believe. All the time go after
    your heart.

  6. Every weekend i used to pay a quick visit this web page,
    because i wish for enjoyment, as this this web page conations in fact pleasant funny material too.

  7. Wonderful goods from you, man. I’ve understand your
    stuff previous to and you’re just extremely great.
    I really like what you have acquired here, certainly like what you are stating and the way
    in which you say it. You make it entertaining and you still
    care for to keep it smart. I cant wait to read far more
    from you. This is actually a great web site.

  8. I am not sure where you’re getting your information, but good topic.
    I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more.
    Thanks for fantastic information I was looking for this information for my mission.

  9. Excellent beat ! I would like to apprentice while you amend your site, how can i subscribe for a
    blog web site? The account helped me a acceptable deal.

    I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered bright clear idea

  10. 102680 298655You must participate in a contest for probably the greatest blogs on the web. I will recommend this internet web site! 964237

  11. I do accept as true with all of the ideas you have offered on your post.

    They’re really convincing and can certainly work.
    Nonetheless, the posts are too quick for beginners. May just
    you please lengthen them a little from subsequent time?
    Thank you for the post.

  12. 86986 549702I needs to spend a while learning much more or understanding more. Thank you for fantastic info I was on the lookout for this info for my mission. 989094

  13. Great weblog here! Additionally your web site rather a lot up very
    fast! What host are you using? Can I get your associate link on your host?
    I want my site loaded up as fast as yours lol

  14. Hi there would you mind letting me know which hosting
    company you’re using? I’ve loaded your blog
    in 3 completely different internet browsers and I must say this blog loads a
    lot faster then most. Can you suggest a good internet hosting provider at a fair price?
    Kudos, I appreciate it!

  15. Hey this is kind of of off topic but I was wanting to know if
    blogs use WYSIWYG editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.

    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding expertise so I wanted to get
    guidance from someone with experience. Any help would be enormously appreciated!

  16. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I
    find this topic to be really something which I think I would never
    understand. It seems too complicated and
    very broad for me. I am looking forward for your next post, I’ll try to get the hang
    of it!

  17. When someone writes an piece of writing he/she retains the thought
    of a user in his/her brain that how a user can be aware of it.
    Thus that’s why this paragraph is outstdanding. Thanks!

  18. Howdy! Do you know if they make any plugins to help with Search Engine Optimization? I’m trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I’m not
    seeing very good success. If you know of any please share.

  19. Thanks for your marvelous posting! I actually enjoyed reading it,
    you may be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and will often come back
    sometime soon. I want to encourage yourself to
    continue your great posts, have a nice afternoon!

  20. You actually make it seem so easy with your presentation but I in finding this topic to be
    really one thing which I believe I might by no means understand.
    It sort of feels too complex and extremely wide for
    me. I am looking ahead on your next put up, I will try to get the cling of

  21. When I initially left a comment I seem to have clicked on the -Notify
    me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on whenever a
    comment is added I recieve four emails with the exact same
    comment. Is there a means you can remove me from that
    service? Thank you!

  22. Howdy just wanted to give you a quick heads up. The words
    in your post seem to be running off the screen in Safari.
    I’m not sure if this is a formatting issue or something to do with
    internet browser compatibility but I figured I’d post to let you know.
    The style and design look great though! Hope you get the problem solved soon. Many thanks

  23. 892633 733214brilliantly insightful post. If only it was as straightforward to implement some with the solutions as it was to read and nod my head at each of your points 793384

  24. I think that everything composed made a bunch of sense.
    But, think about this, suppose you typed a catchier post title?
    I mean, I don’t wish to tell you how to run your blog, however suppose you added something to possibly get people’s attention? I mean Friday’s gratitude:
    Niyitegeka Félicité, national heroine – Afriquela1ère is kinda vanilla.
    You ought to glance at Yahoo’s front page and
    see how they create news titles to grab viewers interested.
    You might add a video or a picture or two to get readers excited
    about what you’ve got to say. Just my opinion, it might bring your posts a little livelier.

  25. Кроме непрерывного выхода, в списке основных плюсов
    предоставленного приложения
    – обход разблокировки со стороны провайдера.

  26. I do not even know how I finished up here, but I assumed this post was once great.

    I don’t recognize who you might be however definitely you are going to a
    well-known blogger if you aren’t already. Cheers!

  27. I just couldn’t leave your website before suggesting that I actually loved the standard information a person provide on your visitors?
    Is gonna be back often to investigate cross-check new posts

  28. I am really impressed with your writing skills as well as
    with the layout on your blog. Is this a paid
    theme or did you customize it yourself? Either way keep up the excellent quality
    writing, it’s rare to see a nice blog like this one these days.

  29. I really like your blog.. very nice colors & theme.
    Did you design this website yourself or did you hire someone to
    do it for you? Plz reply as I’m looking to construct my own blog and would like
    to find out where u got this from. thanks a lot

  30. It’s actually a great and useful piece of information. I
    am happy that you just shared this useful info with us.
    Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

  31. My relatives always say that I am killing
    my time here at net, but I know I am getting knowledge all the time by reading
    such pleasant articles or reviews.

  32. Nice blog right here! Additionally your web site so much up fast!
    What host are you using? Can I get your associate link in your host?
    I wish my website loaded up as fast as yours lol

  33. Thank you for any other informative web site. The place else may I am getting that kind of information written in such a perfect approach?

    I have a mission that I am just now running on, and I’ve been on the
    glance out for such info.

  34. Hey! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any problems with
    hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and
    I ended up losing many months of hard work due to no backup.

    Do you have any methods to stop hackers?

  35. Have you ever considered about adding a little bit more than just your articles?
    I mean, what you say is fundamental and everything.
    However think about if you added some great images or video clips to give your posts
    more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but with pics and clips, this blog could certainly be one of the best in its field.
    Fantastic blog!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *