The Kibeho Apparitions (Rwanda) happened between 1981-1985. However they were recognized by the Catholic Church on 21 June 2001. The “Mother of the Word” from 1981 to 1985 (the Virgin Mary) and Christ revealed themselves to several teenagers in the small village of Kibeho. Extases were often coupled with supernatural facts, tears, impressive collapsing and even coma.
The apparition of August 19, 1982 was terrifying for young people, says Father Gabriel Maindron: “Alphonsine saw Jesus’s Mother crying; the visionaries cried, their teeth chattered or shook and they collapsed. The apparitions lasted about 8 hours; children saw terrifying images: a river of blood, people killing each other, dead bodies left alone, without anybody to bury them. A tree in flame, a widely open gulf, decapitated corpses.” Ten years later, the world learned the Rwandan drama was a warning of the 1994 Rwanda Genocide that Marie had prophesied.
Today, the church has recognized the supernatural facts. However, only three visionaries (out of 8), those who experienced apparitions at the beginnings, are regarded as authentic. These are Alphonsine Mumureke, Nathalie Mukamazimpaka, and Marie-Claire Mukangango (She may have been killed during the war in 1994 together with her husband). Other visionaries have not been recognized so far: Emmanuel Segatashya, Vestine Salima, Valentine Nyiramukiza, Stéphanie Mukamurenzi, and Agnes Kamagaju. Currently, following the example of Lourdes, KIBEHO has become a place of pilgrimage and prayers for Christians from all over the world. Content of the revelations:
- Urgent call for repentance and conversion of hearts: “Repent, repent, repent!” “Be converted before it is too late.”
- The diagnosis of the world moral state: “The world is misbehaving very much.” “The world is on the road to ruin; it will fall into a gulf, i.e. it will be plunged into innumerable and ceaseless misfortunes.” “The world has rebelled against God, too many sins are committed there; there is neither love nor peace.” “If you neither repent nor convert your hearts, you will fall into a gulf.”
- Deep sadness of the Virgin: The visionaries reported to have seen her crying on August 15, 1982. The Mother of the Word is extremely grieved about men’s incredulity and impenitence. She complains about our misconduct characterized by dissolution of customs, complacency in the evil and continual disobedience to the Commandments of God.
- “Faith and unbelief will come together without anyone realizing it.” These are some of the mysterious words said more than once by the Virgin to Alphonsine at the beginning of the apparitions, requesting her to repeat them to men.
- Salvation suffering: This theme is one of the most important in the history of the Kibeho apparitions, especially concerning Nathalie Mukamazimpaka. For a Christian, besides being unavoidable in the worldly life, suffering is required to achieve heavenly glory. On May 15, 1982 the Virgin said this to the visionaries, in particular to Nathalie: “Nobody can go to heaven without suffering.” Or: “Mary’s child does not separate off from suffering.” But suffering is also a way of expiating the sin of the world and taking part in the suffering of Jesus and Mary for the salvation of the world. The visionaries were invited to live out this message in a concrete way, to accept suffering in faith and joy, to be mortified and give up pleasure for the conversion of the world. Kibeho is thus a reminder of the importance of the cross in the life of Christians and the Church.
- Pray unceasingly and without hypocrisy: Men do not pray, and some of those who pray do not do it as they should. The Virgin asks the visionaries to pray much for the world, to teach others how to pray, and to pray on behalf of those who do not pray. The Virgin asks us to pray with a determined zeal without hypocrisy.
- Devotion to Mary: materialized through saying the rosary regularly and sincerely.
- The Virgin Mary’s Rosary of Sorrow The visionary Marie Claire Mukangango said that she received some revelations through this rosary; the Virgin likes this rosary. Formerly known, it had fallen into oblivion. Our Lady of Kibeho wishes that it would be honored and spread in the Church, but the Rosary of Sorrow does not supplant the Holy Rosary.
- The Virgin wishes that a chapel would be built for her in remembrance of her apparition at Kibeho. This is a theme that goes back to the apparitions of January 16, 1982 and comes back on several occasions during the same year, with new developments.
- Pray for the church without respite because great tribulations await it in the coming days. Status of the Marian Training Center
The Kibeho Marian Training Center is a project of the Marian Fathers which has just started its activities. The construction of this Center started in 2004 at Kibeho on Nyarushishi hill, opposite the sanctuary of Our Lady of Kibeho.