Death Penalty Vigil for Good Friday

Media Release Monday 22 March 2010

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission will once again hold a Good Friday vigil to pray for those on death row in Indonesia and around the world, for their families and for the victims of violence and crime.

As in previous years, the prayer vigil will take place at noon at Christ the King Catholic Church, Churchill Street, Graceville in the home parish of Lee and Chris Rush, the parents of Scott Rush who is one of the “Bali Nine” remaining on death row in Indonesia.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that the vigil comes at an important time as Scott Rush’s final appeal may soon be heard.

“We remain committed to this vigil as an important witness to the Gospel of life,” Mr Arndt said.

“The Gospel tells us that all human beings are created in the image of God and, therefore, have a dignity which no-one can take away,” he said.

“That is why the Church is opposed to capital punishment and why we stand in solidarity with those on death row on Good Friday,” he said.

“We are, of course, especially concerned to show support to Scott Rush and his family, but our prayers are for everyone on death row whatever their nationality or crime,” he said.

“It is our hope that our prayers will be accompanied by action aimed at ending capital punishment everywhere,” he said.

 “It is encouraging that the Federal Government has introduced legislation into the Parliament to prohibit the reintroduction of the death penalty in any jurisdiction in Australia,” he said.

 “There is, however, much more work to do to convince those nations who still use the death penalty to stop the practice,” he said.

 “We hope that Catholics will continue to pray for all those on death row and also try to encourage our politicians to bring about an end to capital punishment everywhere,” he said.

 For further information, please contact Peter Arndt on (07) 3336 9173 or 0409 265 476.

NB  This release is issued with the approval of the Commission or its Executive under the provision of its Mandate which enables it to speak in its own right when required.  The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane

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