Liberty University School of Law to Host Genocide Symposium

February 01, 2011


Liberty University School of Law and American Association of Christian Counselors are jointly sponsoring a symposium titled, “Genocide and Religious Persecution Around the World,” beginning at 2:00 P.M. on Tuesday, February 15, and concluding at 7:15 P.M. on Wednesday, February 16. All sessions will be held at the School of Law Supreme Courtroom.

A diverse pool of representatives from academia, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations will examine the causes and impact of genocide and religious persecution. Invited and confirmed speakers include:

•    Irving Roth, Holocaust survivor; Director, Holocaust Resource Center
•    Dr. Hillel Levine, Department of Religion, Boston University
•    Dr. Cyrus Mad-Bondo, Director for Africa, WorldHelp
•    Dr. Celestin Musekura, President and Founder, African Leadership
      and Reconcilation Ministries (ALARM)
•    Professor Basyle Tchividjian, Liberty University School of Law
•    The Honorable Jean de Dieu Mucyo, Executive Secretary to the National
      Commission on the Fight Against Genocide, CLNG
•    Dr. Emmanuel Tchividjian, Senior Vice President and Chief Ethics Officer,
      Ruder Finn; Board member, Godly Response to Abuse in the
      Christian Environment (GRACE)
•    Pastor Johnnie Moore, Vice President for Executive Projects and Media
      Relations/Campus Pastor, Liberty University
•    Ntaba Bahati Jacques, Africa Faith and Justice Network
•    Professor Edna Udobong, Liberty University School Law
•    Claude Gatebuke, African Great Lakes Action Network TN, and
      Carl Wilkens Fellow with Genocide Intervention Network
•    Joshua Straub, Ph.D., American Association of Christian Counselors
•    Professor Nii Akuetteh, Founder, The Democracy & Conflict
      Research Institute, DCRI; and Founding Executive
      Director of OSIWA.
•    Professor Sharon Thomas, Liberty University School Law
•    Yolande Bouka, Ph.D. (candidate), American University, Washington, D.C.

The term “genocide” did not exist in the English language prior to 1944. Genocide was only established by the United Nations as an international crime in 1948, after the horrors of the holocaust had been exposed.  Widespread genocide in war-torn areas like Bosnia-Herzegovina in the mid-1990s and Darfur, Sudan in recent years have captured media attention.  In 1994, the world was shocked at the brutality of genocide in the small African nation of Rwanda, where ruling Hutus butchered to death 800,000 Tutsis in 100 days, while the UN and Western nations did nothing.  

The upcoming genocide symposium will examine both the history of genocide and current outbreaks of genocide worldwide.    Strategies for preventing genocide and ways to deal with its devastating aftermath among the surviving population will be presented.  

Topics for the symposium include the following:

•    The Armenian Genocide – The First Genocide of the 20th Century
•    The History and Causes of Genocide
•    Genocide and Its Impact – The African Experience
•    The Holocaust – What Can Be Learned to Prevent Future Genocides
•    An Eyewitness Account of The Holocaust

Panel discussions and Q & A sessions will be featured during the two-day event.  The PBS documentary film, “Ghosts of Rwanda,” will be shown on Tuesday, February 15 at 7:00 P.M. in the Supreme Courtroom.  The film tells the story of the Rwandan genocide and its aftermath.

During the symposium, a team of Liberty University students will be commissioned to travel to Rwanda where they will assist in grief and trauma intervention.

For more information about Liberty University School of Law and future events listings, visit