Rev. Carl Wilkens
By Jessica Stewart, Courier Editor-in-Chief
Pastor Carl Wilkens will be visiting Logan next Tuesday to speak to students about his experiences during the Rwandan Genocide of 1994, his recent trip back to Rwanda, and his thoughts on the genocide in Darfur. It will be Wilkens’ second visit to Logan to speak on this topic.
Pastor Wilkens was the only American who stayed in Rwanda after the American Embassy sent everybody else back home. In an interview with Frontline for the documentary, “Ghosts of Rwanda”, Carl talked about his choice to remain. He said, “This sadness just kind of came over me, because now, if people in Rwanda ever needed help […] now was the time; and everybody's leaving.”
Wilkens’ choice to remain put him in danger. He could hear people being murdered and see houses being looted right outside his front door. He was fortunate enough to have kind neighbors who interceded with some looters who planned on killing Wilkens, his family and the employees they were harboring.
When asked about remembering the genocide, Carl said, “It reminds me that one person can make a difference, and it reminds us to look outside of ourselves and to reach outside.” Carl himself contributed to the survival of 400 Rwandan orphans.
Pastor Wilkens is only recently returned from another visit to Rwanda, and he will be going back again later in the year for the genocide’s 15th anniversary.
Carl will be speaking at Logan next Tuesday in the Little Theater during 2nd and 3rd periods and 6th and 7th periods. Permission slips for attendance are available from Ms. Papas in room 444 afterschool.