A Canadian missionary credited with saving the lives of dozens of Rwandans during the genocide of 1994 was buried Monday, the day after he was shot in the back as he administered communion in a tiny rural church.
Guy Pinard, 61, was a member of the Roman Catholic Society of Missionaries of Africa, popularly known as the “White Fathers.” The killing occurred in his parish chuch in Kampanga, nine miles north of Ruhengeri, which is 60 miles northwest of the capital, Kigali.
Pinard’s fellow White Fathers said he had refused to abandon the area when Hutu extremists went on a rampage in a government-orchestrated killing spree in April 1994, murdering more than half a million minority Tutsis as well as Hutus who favored political dialogue rather than conflict.
The Rev. Denis-Paul Hamelin, the White Fathers’ adviser in the Vatican and a friend of Pinard’s from their seminary days in Quebec, said the priest had remained several weeks after the killing began to help potential victims cross the border into Zaire.