Executions are down and abolition may not be far behind
c. 2015 Religion News Service
(RNS) It looks like the death penalty may be on life support. January was set to be the deadliest month for U.S. executions in 2015, but nine of the 15 executions were stopped. In an unprecedented wave, three of the deadliest states stopped executions planned for last month—Texas, Oklahoma, and Missouri. February has just begun, but nine of its 12 scheduled executions have been halted.
Undocumented failure: Why we must care for our immigrant brothers and sisters
The father, in his rage and grief, told me that this country did not care about his son who lay dying.
Certain events in our lives get burned into our memories and become a part of us. Often these events happen at beginnings and endings: births and deaths. Perhaps because of the definitude of those moments, we recognize them as utterly important and crucial.
Tips for connecting with a loved one with Alzheimer’s
As a child, Laura Anthony visited her grandmother, who had Alzheimer’s, every weekend after Mass.
“As a kid I never knew what to talk about,” she says. “It was so awkward.”
Years later, after her mother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, Anthony drove most weekends from Bradenton, Florida to provide care and company for her mom and dad in Citrus County.
For love of the game: Emphasizing justice in youth sports
In youth sports, we shouldn’t just be in it to win it. Sometimes that means parents need to be sidelined so kids can just play.
When his daughter was playing youth basketball, Clark Power found himself serving as both parent and coach. He wanted his daughter, who was a good dribbler but shy and nervous in front of crowds, to be more aggressive and animated. He remembers running up and down the sidelines during one game, trying to engage her.
Finding the good life in retirement
Retirement may seem like a long vacation, but making the most of those post-career years still takes plenty of hard work.
The death penalty in the United States: A timeline
In 2007 New Jersey became the first state to abolish the death penalty since it was reinstated in 1976, joining 12 other states that never reintroduced the practice when given the option. While many other states weigh their options and as advocates continue to work toward full repeal, here’s a look back on the country’s history of capital punishment:
Sister Helen Prejean on the movement to end the death penalty
In 1982, Sister Helen Prejean began a correspondence with two death row inmates in her home state of Louisiana. She eventually became the spiritual adviser to Patrick Sonnier and accompanied him to his execution in 1984. Prejean chronicled her experiences in Dead Man Walking, the best-selling book which has been adapted to a film (for which Susan Sarandon won an Oscar for her portrayal of Prejean), play, and opera.
The beginning of the end of the death penalty
The death penalty is still legal in most states, but little by little, the laws that allow executions are being chipped away.
Leroy Wright was forced to endure a mock execution mere hours before doctors were set to inject him with a lethal cocktail meant to end his life in January 2011. He lay on the gurney with IVs in his arms when the United States Supreme Court issued a temporary stay of execution.
Good Friday: Jesus' execution and the death penalty in the United States
Each year on Good Friday we listen to the account of the events surrounding Jesus’ death: the trial, the boisterous crowd, the journey to Golgotha. The description is clear; Jesus received the death penalty and was executed. Though the cross is a rich symbol of all that God has accomplished in Jesus, don’t forget it is (or was) also an instrument of torture and execution. Jesus has once and for all taken away sin by his sacrifice (Heb. 9:26).
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