Changed Lives Through Trauma Healing

These are leaders who were recently trained and now conduct local trauma healing workshops in their communities. Dr. Harriet Hill is pictured right of center wearing sunglasses and a blue and green dress. (Photo by Frederick Barasa.)

“I was ‘blind'...I have been a pastor for so many years and didn't realize that I was traumatized.” So said Pastor Samuel Muhemwa from Bukavu, DRC, while he was attending the first five-day trauma healing session in February.

As senior research analyst with Global Scripture Impact, I also attended the workshop. I was impressed to see an overwhelming outpouring from men who apologized on behalf of other men who committed atrocities against women. They pledged to sensitize other men to respect and honor women. The seminar, which was led by American Bible Society, had 18 participants and program managers from seven Bible Societies in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Burundi, Sudan and Central African Republic.

The participants, who were grouped according to regions, prepared workplans and made commitments to hold trauma healing seminars in their areas.

Staff members receive a full-immersion course in trauma healing in Rwanda. | Read Now »

Some openly shared their pain for the first time. Pastor Muhemwa also said, “I have been helping other people to tackle their problems but did not know how and whom to talk to regarding burdens that I have in my family…I have cried and God has opened me…As a country…we need to experience this kind of healing…”

Dr. Harriet Hill, author and director of Scripture engagement Content at American Bible Society, leads the trauma healing sessions. Of the second session, she said, “It was a very exciting adventure to see Scripture engage people in the midst of their pain, to hear the Scripture songs in beautiful Congolese music styles and languages, to see them track intently with the telling of the stories in their languages, to hear the discussions around the stories, to observe the ‘aha' moments, and over [time] to see the anxious faces replaced with beaming smiles — to share life and laughter, pain and tears with these people.”

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