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Can a Rapper Save Congo?
Goma
By Monique Jaques
22 Jul 2015

Rapper singer Akon returns to his hometown of Goma, in the Democratic Republic of Congo. His trip led him to the orphanage where he spent his childhood and was greeted with excitement by the local children.

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Pentecostalism: Divine healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
31 Jul 2014

Prayer houses have become a public health concern for the Congolese Government. The misconception many Congolese have about physical and mental illness makes them avoid hospitals and go to their nearest prayer house.
The “Galilaya” Church has many of these prayer houses across the Congo. It belongs to the 8th Community of the Pentecostal Churches of Central Africa (8th CEPAC) and is one of the many movements that shape the religious landscape in North Kivu´s capital, Goma, a city with 1 million inhabitants in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). In a nation that has witnessed so much horror and violence many turn to religion in the search for answers and solutions.

The DRC has a strong Christian tradition born out of colonialism. It is estimated that around 90% of the 70 million inhabitants are of Christian faith. However religious schisms have created an increasing number of religious movements within Christianity. Pentecostalism is one of these movements. This renewal movement within Christianity is based on four fundamental beliefs: Salvation, Baptism with the Holy Spirit, divine healing and the Second Coming of Christ. It is the notion of divine healing that has given the movement such strength in a region punished by war and misery for the last 20 years. Pastors like Moise Munyuabumba, head of the Galilaya Church, promise divine healing to every Congolese who embraces the faith. The pastor has apparently cured patients of sterility, mental traumas, sexual impotence, and even cancer, along with other ailments. The church comes together a few times a week in the prayer house to seek salvation. The prayer houses are people’s homes that have been turned into churches. The healing sessions are intense. The faithful usually go into a trance-like state and sometimes end up having prophecies or speak in tongues.

The misconception many Congolese have about modern medicine makes them avoid hospitals and go to their nearest prayer house. This misconception stems from the idea of witchcraft and old beliefs in which the source of evil emanates from sorcery or spells. Easy treatable diseases can become lethal because of late diagnosis. People with a burn would rather go to a prayer house than a hospital. Those who go to hospitals might not find the answers they were looking for and will try their luck with people like Pastor Moise Munyuabumba. Desperation and fear make many Congolese seek spiritual shelter in “Galilaya” where their physical and mental traumas can be healed through praying. In the third largest country in Africa where life expectancy is 48, modern medicine has to combat Churches like “Galilaya” who promise divine healing. The DRC also has the lowest rank in the Human Development Report along with Niger.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Surrendering FDLR combatants lay down their weapons and hand over 102 guns to the Southern Africa Development Community, SADC, as the Congolese government and the UN mission witness the ceremony in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

UN helicopters carrying the Congolese government, SADC and MONUSCO representatives land at Buleusa, DR Congo for the FDLR surrendering ceremony on May 30, 2014..

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

FDLR's interim president, Victor Biringiro completes a review of his surrendering contingent before handing them over to the Southern African Development Community at Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014..

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Family members of the FDLR combatants watch the surrendering ceremony at Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Surrendering FDLR combatant sings and dances with a member of his family to express his joy for having the support of the international community during the official ceremony in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

North Kivu vice governor, Feller Lutaichirwa , Ray Torres and head of office Monusco Goma, inspecting weapons handed over by Rwandan FDLR combatants during their surrendering ceremony in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

FDLR's interim president, Victor Biringiro signs a declaration ending their armed insurgency and leaving his troops and their dependents in the hands of the Southern African Development Community and the Congolese government at Buleusa on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Family members of FDLR rebels singing and dancing at the surrendering ceremony at Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

"We congratulate you for taking this wise decision to disarm. We will never tolerate some of you returning to the forest to disturb peace.
SADC will accompany you in your political integration process and will
ensure that the agreed resolutions are respected. "
Lieutenant Colonel Omari Ujani, Southern African Development Community representative

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

The DRC’s head of demobilisation program, General Delphin Kayimbi and SADC representative, Lieutnant Colonel Omari Ujani, at the FDLR surrendering ceremony at Beleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014..

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

FDLR's interim president, Victor Biringiro shaking hands with North Kivu's vice governor, Feller Lutaichirwa, after their 20 year old rebellion in Buleusa, eastern DR Congo.
"No one in this world can claim to build his country by taking up arms "Now that you become civilians , you have the possibility of claiming your right to political participation. The Congolese government will
ensure that you and your dependents are safe and do not miss anything."
Feller Lutaichirwa, Northen Kivu Vice-Governor

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Ammunition surrendered by FDLR combatants to the Southern African Development Community and the Congolese government at the ceremony in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

Victor Biringiro, FDLR’s interim president, during the surrendering ceremony in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.
" We lay down our weapons because we want the SADC to help us win an inter-Rwandan frank, sincere and highly inclusive dialogue. We need a
secure space to freely exercise our right to political participation".

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

One hundred and five surrendering FDLR combatants at the Kateku primary school where the official ceremony with the international community representatives was held in Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014..

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Buleusa
By Gaïus Kowene
30 May 2014

North Kivu Vice Governor Feller Lutaichirwa, Ray Torres, MONUSCO Goma’s head of office, and François Rukolera, FDLR president advisor walk up to the compound where the Rwandan rebels surrendering ceremony will take place at Buleusa, DR Congo on May 30, 2014.

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FDLR Surrenders Its Weapons
Beleusa, Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC)
By Gaïus Kowene
29 May 2014

The Rwandan Hutu rebel group that has been battling the government in Kigali for the past twenty years has taken what it says is the first step in disarming its fighters and starting a political fight instead.
At a ceremony on Friday May 30 at Buleusa in North Kivu province of the Democratic Republic of the Congo more than 100 fighters of the Democratic Forces for the Liberation of Rwanda, FDLR, surrendered and handed in their weapons.
But the FDLR warned that continuing the process of peace depends upon the government of Rwandan President Paul Kagame agreeing to talks.
The leader of the rebel group General Victor Byiringiro said “We call up on the International community to help us get an open dialogue with the Rwandan Government”.
The Hutu led FDLR is made up of former Rwandan Army soldiers and Hutu militia who fled the country after the 1994 genocide and found refuge in Congo.
Lieutenant Colonel, Omari Ujani, representative of the SADC, Southern African Development Community promised surrendering combatants and their dependents security. He announced the creation of a joint commission to make sure their demobilization process is effective. Omari also assured them of SADC diplomatic support for their political reintegration in Rwanda. “As you freely decided to lay down your guns, we don’t want you to go back in jungle disturbing locals’ peace”, he said.
The surrendering combatants will wait in a transit camp in Kanyabayonga, a village near Congo's Virunga National Park, before being relocated in Equateur province.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Divine healing is one of the key features of the Pentecostal Movement. Beat Mekarubamba was diagnosed breast cancer at a local hospital. According to Pastor Moise, her cancer is the consequence of her being with a polygamist. She will be healed when she admits her sin and embraces God.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Justin Kabumba is a member of Galilaya. His sister Beat Mekarubamba has breast cancer. When hospitals couldnt help her, they went to Pastor Moises Church to seek healing.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Justin Kabumba with his sister Beat Mekarubamba. Beat has been diagnosed with breast cancer and seeks healing in the “Galilaya” prayer house.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Justin Kabumba with his sister Beat Mekarubamba. Beat has been diagnosed with breast cancer and seeks healing in the Galilaya prayer house.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Aziya Heshima could only give birth by caesarean until Pastor Moise healed her. Praying sessions end with music and dancing.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Aziya Heshima could only give birth by caesarean until Pastor Moise healed her. Praying sessions end with music and dancing.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Furahu Kahalako joined this Church to seek help with her mental illness.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

John Akilimali comes regularly to the “Galilaya´s” prayer house after Pastor Moise cured him of poisoning.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

John Akilimali comes regularly to the Galilayas prayer house after Pastor Moise cured him of poisoning.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Divine healing is one of the key features of the Pentecostal Movement. Beat Mekarubamba was diagnosed breast cancer at a local hospital. According to Pastor Moise, her cancer is the consequence of her being with a polygamist. She will be healed when she admits her sin and embraces God.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Pastor Moise Munyuabumba heals people every Saturday in sessions that can last up to 3 hours. The Pastor reads some passages from the Bible, explains them and then starts the healing process.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Pastor Moise Munyuabumba heals people every Saturday in sessions that can last up to 3 hours. The Pastor reads some passages from the Bible, explains them and then starts the healing process.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Daniel Masumbuko is from Uganda and has had a very close relationship with Pastor Moise, ever since Moise went to Uganda to heal him from erectile dysfunction disorder.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

“Galilaya´s” prayer house in Goma, North Kivu.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

The intensity increases towards the end of the praying, as members of the Church receive Pastor Moise´s blessing.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

The intensity increases towards the end of the praying, as members of the Church receive Pastor Moises blessing.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

These kind of prayer houses can be found all across the region of Goma.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

These kind of prayer houses can be found all across the region of Goma.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Justin Kabumba is a member of “Galilaya”. His sister Beat Mekarubamba has breast cancer. When hospitals couldn´t help her, they went to Pastor Moise´s Church to seek healing.

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Pentecostalism: Divine Healing in Eas...
Goma
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Pentecostalism is an evangelical faith. Its adherents generally believe in the Bible´s divinity and inerrancy.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Pentecostalism is an evangelical faith. Its adherents generally believe in the Bibles divinity and inerrancy.

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Pentecostalism- Divine healing in Eas...
By Patrick
26 Apr 2014

Furahu Kahalako joined this Church to seek help with her mental illness.