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Today is:
Sun, Apr 30, 2017
Rwanda Today: Stories Doing What Guns Can't

Presented by Carl Wilkens

About Carl Wilkens
The only American witness to the 1994 genocide is back from a recent visit to Rwanda and sharing stories of the tiny country's incredible recovery.

As a humanitarian aid worker with the Adventist Church, Carl Wilkens moved his young family to Rwanda in the spring of 1990. When the genocide was launched in April 1994, Wilkens refused to leave, even when urged to do so by close friends, his church and the United States government. He was the only American to remain in the country, though thousands of expatriates evacuated and the United Nations pulled out most of their troops. Venturing out each day into streets crackling with mortars and gunfire, Wilkens worked his way through roadblocks of angry, bloodstained soldiers and civilians armed with machetes and assault rifles in order to bring food, water, and medicines to groups of orphans trapped around the city. His actions saved the lives of 100's.

In January 2008, with no end in sight to the ongoing genocide in Darfur, Wilkens left his job in Oregon to dedicate himself full time to inspiring and equipping people to stand up against hatred, prejudice and genocide. He and his wife Teresa have since formed an educational non-profit "World Outside My Shoes" to facilitate this work.

This year, Wilkens released his first book titled "I'm Not Leaving," which is based largely on tapes he made to his wife and children during the genocide, not knowing if he would ever see them again.

RSVP to or 630-844-6864.

Location: Crimi Auditorium in the Institute for Collaboration
Sponsor: Wackerlin Center for Faith and Action
Contact: E-Mail