Peter Faber Community: House of Special Studies

Butare2Peter Faber Community, commonly known as “Maison des Etudiants” (Students’ House) is located in Huye (formerly Butare) in the South of Rwanda. Since its creation in 1980s, the community has been a home to Jesuit scholastics studying at the University of Rwanda.

A good number of Jesuits from Rwanda, Burundi and Democratic Republic of the Congo have sojourned in the house pursuing degrees, in for example, Law, Agriculture, the social sciences and humanities.

Between 1998 and 2004 the house was temporally closed and let out to religious sisters and subsequently lay people. In 2014 a new group of scholastics was missioned to pursue studies at the University of Rwanda; hence offering the opportunity for the Jesuits to regain the premises.


Notre Dame de la Route (NDR): Novitiate

Photo noviciat internetNoviciat Notre Dame de la Route (Our Lady of the Wayside Novitiate) in Cyangugu, Rwanda, opened its doors on 23rd September 1966. Previously, the Jesuit Novitiate of the Central African Province had been founded in 1948, in Djuma (Democratic Republic of Congo)
Life in the novitiate is a time of grace where young men are nurtured to offer themselves to the Lord. The novitiate fosters a climate of prayer, silence, work and faith sharing, under the guidance of elder companions.

The novitiate has had a turbulent history though, in keeping with the unstable political situation in Rwanda and Congo. In 1967, a rebellion in Congo forced many Congolese to flee across Rusizi River and the novitiate welcomed hundreds of them.

In 1994, the genocide affected the novitiate, by God’s grace, the community found shelter in Bukavu. The buildings of the novitiate then became a refuge to many displaced families in Rwanda. During this troubled period, the novitiate moved first to Congo Brazzaville, then provisionally to Centre Christus in Kigali and thereafter to Butare. In 1999 it regained its home in Cyangugu. The house in Cyangugu continued to welcome many displaced people. At the initiative of the Jesuits, and with support from the Soeurs Penitentes de St Francois, the novitiate became a Centre for Unaccompanied minors from 1995 to 2000. Many of the minors were orphans who had survived the genocide.

Under the patronage of Our Lady, the novitiate continues to form novices for the future of the Society of Jesus and the ministry of the Good News of Christ in the World.

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