Tag Archives: capital punishment

Commission Continues Support for Scott Rush and Other Australians

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission welcomed the Indonesian Supreme Court’s decision to reduce Scott Rush’s death sentence to life imprisonment, but insisted that it must continue its support for Scott Rush and for the other Australians who are still on death row in Indonesia.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that life imprisonment in Indonesia for Scott Rush was not acceptable.

“We are, of course, happy that Scott Rush will not have to worry about facing a firing squad any more, but life in prison in Bali is still a dreadful prospect,” Mr Arndt said.

“We know that Scott and his family have been greatly supported by the prayers and practical help of so many people over the last few years, but they now face the stark reality of Scott living for the rest of his life in the most appalling conditions,” he said.

“At our recent Good Friday prayer vigil, we learned how concerned Scott’s parents are over the living conditions in Scott’s Bali prison,” he said.

“We will look at what support we can give to them to get a reasonable and appropriate outcome for Scott,” he said.

“Those who have faithfully come to the Commission’s Good Friday vigils and our monthly prayer vigils will know that we have not only been praying for Scott, but also for the other two Australians on death row in Indonesia and for everyone on death row around the world,” he said.

“Our prayers and our action must continue for them too,” he said.

“We must continue to promote the sanctity of life and the human dignity of every person including those who have committed the most horrible crimes,” he said.

The Commission’s next death penalty prayer vigil will be held at Christ the King Church, Churchill Street, Graceville at 7 p.m. on Tuesday 24 May.

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.  The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

 

Death Row Prayers Continue as Final Appeals Lodged

Monday 16 August 2010

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission is calling on Catholics to continue praying for the three members of the Bali Nine who have now all lodged their final appeals against their death sentences to Indonesia’s Supreme Court.

The Commission has held an annual Good Friday prayer vigil for those on death row around the world since 2008 and has started an additional monthly prayer vigil this year in the Brisbane Parish of Corinda-Graceville, the home parish of Scott Rush, one of the three Australians on death row in Bali.

Scott Rush lodged his final appeal against his death sentence in July and the other two Australians, Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran, lodged their appeals last Friday.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, urged Catholics to pray for all three Australians and their families.

“Whatever their wrongdoing, they all have a right to life and should not face execution as punishment,” Mr Arndt said.

“All these men and their families are facing enormous stress and pain and need our prayers,” he said.

“One of the Indonesian lawyers lodging the appeals last week said that the death penalty on his client violated his right to life which is guaranteed by the Indonesian Constitution,” he said.

“We strongly oppose these death sentences for the same reason,” he said.

Church Teaching effectively rejects the use of capital punishment as a violation of the right of every human being to God’s gift of life,” he said.

“Our Commission will also be urging our Federal politicians to do everything they can to support these three men and to encourage the Indonesian Government to abandon its use of the death penalty,” he said.

The Commission’s next prayer vigil will be held at Christ the King Catholic Church, Churchill Street, Graceville, next Tuesday 24 August at 7 p.m.  All are welcome to join with the Commission and the local Parish community in prayer for the three Australians and all those on death row around the world.

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.

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

Commission Vows to Continue Action to Abolish Death Penalty

Monday 10 November 2008

 

 

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission has vowed to continue its work to promote the universal abolition of the death penalty in the wake of the execution of the three Bali Bombers yesterday.

 

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that the execution of the three Indonesians had done nothing to resolve the problems which caused the killing of 202 people in Bali in 2002 nor to heal the immense pain caused by the terrorist attacks.

 

“The grief and pain suffered by so many survivors and families of those killed in the bombings makes what the bombers did an immense wrong,” Mr Arndt said.

 

“However, State-sanctioned killing does not make things better,” he said.

 

“The psychological and physical damage of survivors and families of victims is still there from all we have heard,” he said.

 

“The unrepentant commitment of the Bombers themselves to violence may have been silenced, but their supporters are still voicing the same hateful ideas,” he said.

 

“The Bombers will now never have a chance to understand the pain they have caused and the victims will never have the opportunity to hear words of remorse from them,” he said.

 

“There will be no chance for reparations to be made by the Bombers to the victims,” he said.

 

“We are still faced with the threat of more violence and terror hanging over our heads and the prospect of other people being killed and families suffering dreadful loss,” he said.

 

“Killing is not the answer to killing,” he said.

 

“Our Commission will continue to promote universal abolition of the death penalty,” he said.

 

“Our Federal Government needs to have an uncompromising commitment to this goal and we will do what we can to encourage this,” he said.

 

“In relation to the threat posed by violent religious extremists in our own region, there needs to be a stronger commitment to supporting inter-religious dialogue and action to respond to this problem,” he said.

 

“It is good to see that some work is being done in this area and we will do what we can to support it,” he said.

 

“We urge Catholics to continue to keep the survivors and victims’ families in their prayers,” he said.

 

“We ask them to also pray for an end to all forms of violence and to support action which promotes peace and universal respect for the dignity of every human person,” 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 Charter which enables it to speak in its own right.  The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.

 

Commission To Hand Over Death Penalty Petitions in Prayer Service

Media Release

Commission To Hand Over Death Penalty Petitions in Prayer Service

Brisbane’s Catholic Justice and Peace Commission will deliver a death penalty abolition petition to Queensland Senator Claire Moore next Tuesday 1 July at a prayer service at Holy Cross Catholic Church, Wooloowin.

The petition has been signed by over 2000 people from parishes in the Archdiocese and from around the country.

Senator Moore will lodge the petition in the Senate at its next sitting and will seek to speak to the issue on that day.

The Commission’s Executive Officer, Peter Arndt, said that it was important for Catholics to continue their participation in efforts to abolish capital punishment in Indonesia and around the world.

“For those who have made a commitment to this cause, it is important to remain active in the long term,” Mr Arndt said.

“The continuing use of the death penalty around the world invites Catholics to commit to solidarity with those whose human dignity is threatened by the prospect of the death penalty being imposed and carried out,” he said.

“Solidarity is one of the four universal principles of Catholic Social Doctrine and is something which the Gospel calls us to put into practice when we see the dignity of our fellow human beings being abused,” he said.

“Solidarity is about standing with those who face the indignity of poverty or injustice and doing this in the long term,” he said.

“It also means being prepared to face unpleasant consequences as a result of this commitment,” he said.

“There are some people who strongly disagree with our opposition to the use of the death penalty in cases like those of the Bali Bombers and that of the three Australians convicted of drug offences in Bali,” he said.

“All these six men have committed very serious offences and, in fact, have been responsible for the deaths or suffering and misery of many other people,” he said.

“But the Church must defend the value of human life if it is to be faithful to the Gospel,” he said.

“Revenge and retribution cannot be in the vocabulary of Christians who follow the example of Jesus,” he said.

“Those who have done serious wrong must face serious consequences, but this should not include death at the hands of the State,” he said.

“The Commission will continue to offer opportunities for more action on the death penalty and especially at the time when our petition is lodged in the Senate,” he said.

“We have had contact with members of the cross-Party parliamentary Working Group working on the death penalty and they are very keen to support our efforts,” he added.

The Commission’s death penalty prayer service will begin at 7.30 p.m. at Holy Cross Church, 28 Chalk Street, Wooloowin. All are welcome.

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 Charter which enables it to speak in its own right. The views expressed in it do not necessarily represent the views of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Brisbane.