Emmanuel was a Sunday school baby, the son of a preacher, who grew up in the church, sang in the choir, and read scriptures for the services. His father’s church in Rwanda was 80% Hutu, 20%Tutsi, but his father never talked about the division; he served the whole community. The day the killers came to their home, Emmanuel grabbed his baby sister and ran for his life. Driven from the refuge he finally found, exhausted and faint with hunger, he had to take a chance; he knocked on the door of an old friend, a Hutu, not knowing if she was still a friend or had become another one of the enemies.
I Am My Story Live is a production of the award-winning nonprofit The Immigrant Story. The stories were presented live at First Congregational Church of Christ, Portland, OR on Saturday, April 1, 2022. With a focus on powerful voices of survival and soothing musical accompaniment, I Am My Story Live provided a space for storytelling, cultural exchange and empathy.
Organized as a part of Genocide Awareness Month, this free event is made possible by a generous contribution from the Zidell Family Foundation. This project is supported in part by a grant from the Oregon Heritage Commission, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. Additional funding was provided by a grant from Oregon Humanities (OH), a statewide nonprofit organization and an independent affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, which funds OH’s grant program.