“Every good and perfect gift…”

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“God travels the earth during the day … but he sleeps in Rwanda” (Rwandan folk proverb). This “land of a thousand hills” is a place of breathtaking beauty, and yet it is also a place that has known great tragedy. For more than thirty-five years, Father Ubald has worked to bring healing and peace to his people. He needs partners who will stand with him. Will you help?

Please pray for the work of the Center for the Secret of Peace, and if you are able please make your donation here. No gift is too small. Each gift is an answered prayer.


“The LORD has eyes for the just…”

Today’s reading from the Psalms reminds us that our God, while merciful, is also a God of justice. With each refrain, “Taste and see the goodness of the Lord,” (Psalm 34), we also read of the God who is “close to the brokenhearted,” who saves “those who are crushed in spirit.” This is just as true for believers in the United States as it is in Rwanda.

The medicine of the Great Physician, the call to forgiveness and mercy, has a bitter taste at first. And yet, in time the sweetness emerges in peace, in reconciliation, even in joy. — HHS 


It had been seventeen years since she first asked Father Ubald to pray for her to have a child. Seventeen years since she had offered herself to Our Lady of Love, and asked for her to pray for her healing. Year by year, her hope began to fade. After ten years, she stopped going to church. After fifteen, she had resigned herself to the fact that she would never be a mother.

And then it happened. The stirrings began. And a child was born. She had not been forgotten, though she had tried to forget. She came forward at the healing service at the Center, and asked for forgiveness for having doubted. The small, sleeping  bundle in her arms made Father Ubald’s eyes light with joy. “Thank you, Jesus.”

As the interpreter whispered this young woman’s story in my ear, I was deeply moved. I remembered the stories that had been sent to me while we were putting the book together — we needed only enough for a chapter, but could have had enough for a book. Each of those stories was a sign of God’s love, just as this tiny child had been. God has not forgotten the people of Rwanda, those who cry out for justice. “From all their distress he rescues them.” And when he does, they come to the Center to tell what God has done.

What has God done for you? Have you shared your story? Will you share the blessing? If you would like to help Father Ubald continue this important ministry all over the world, please make your donation here. No gift is too small. Each gift is an answered prayer.

Heidi Hess Saxton is Father Ubald’s editor at Ave Maria Press. Father Ubald’s book, Forgiveness Makes You Free will be released in April 2019. You can read more of Heidi’s writing on her blog “Life on the Road Less Traveled.”

At the Center


49 Praying at CoP PG3A5517In this blogpost series, Fr. Ubald’s editor Heidi Saxton shares her experience of visiting Fr. Ubald in Rwanda to help him finish his upcoming book with Ave Maria Press, Forgiveness Makes You Free (April 2019). More information will be posted about the release of this book in upcoming posts.

Bouncing in the back of Fr. Ubald’s SUV that first night we arrived at Rusizi, I was amazed at the number of people walking the dirt path toward the Center. The headlights shone on women with heavy burdens on their heads and shoulder, and children who peered inside and spotted us. “Mbadzungu!” (white people).

Why were these people walking toward the center so late at night? “They are coming to prepare for tomorrow,” Father explained. “There will be special healing prayers after Mass.”

When we arrived, I could see that the church that was under construction, just beyond the makeshift shelter with the outdoor altar, protected by an aluminum shelter. Tonight a screen had been raised, and they showed Father’s documentary, Forgiveness: The Secret of Peace.

I looked around. Hundreds of people had gathered on a Monday night, to prepare for a Tuesday Mass the next morning — there is a special service held on the 13th of each month to commemorate Fatima, whose message was much like that of Our Lady of Kibeho: pray for conversions, to avert the coming disaster.

“We saw your tears, and yet we did not turn,” invoked Fr. Ubald. “But do not cry any more, Blessed Mother. We are listening, and we will obey. Help us to forgive and to show mercy, that we may know peace.”

The next morning when we arrived for Mass, the grounds of the Center were already filled with thousands of people. Some made their way from the shore of Lake Kivu, stopping first at the shrine of Our Lady of Kibeho, then climbing on their knees to Jesus (see picture), whose Sacred Heart is full of mercy for all. Finally, they make their way toward Our Lady of Love, holding the Child Jesus. Many women have been healed of infertility by asking for her intercession.

Under the shelter, behind the altar, are two more statues: The first, Our Lady of Peace, offers a gentle benediction to all those who seek healing and release from the torments and traumas of the past, and to her right, her most beloved daughter, St. Josephine Bakhita, a living icon of forgiveness under unthinkable circumstances.

After the Mass and healing prayers had concluded, I went to see the chapel Father is building to accommodate those who come to pray and adore Jesus in his Eucharistic presence throughout the week. They are building it on faith … trusting that God will provide the money they need to finish the building. They need $600,000 to complete the building as well as the other additions that must be made before they will be allowed to open it to the public. You can see more pictures of the project here. If you have been touched by Father Ubald’s ministry and would like to help, please go here to make your tax deductible contribution. Thank you!

IMG_3188Heidi Hess Saxton is Fr. Ubald’s editor on his book Forgiveness Makes You Free (Ave Maria Press, April 2019). She and her husband Craig spent time with Fr. Ubald in June 2018. You can read more about Heidi on her blog “A Life on the Road Less Traveled.”