Messages of Hope

Blessed are the merciful

Published / by Sandy

On Wednesday evening a vigil was held on the forecourt of Adelaide’s Pilgrim Uniting Church in collaboration with Amnesty International. The vigil was for all those on death row in Indonesia. As the names were read a candle was lit for each one.

Rev Prof Andrew Dutney was one of the speakers. He said:

“The Uniting Church opposes capital punishment whether it’s in Indonesia, the United States, China or anywhere else”.

“We respect the rule of law, and the sovereign right of nations to make and enforce their own laws. But bad law needs to be challenged. And capital punishment is bad law”.

“Capital punishment punishes many more than the individuals upon whom it is inflicted. It also wounds everyone who loves its particular victim – parents, grandparents, siblings, children, friends…”

“It wounds anyone who has come to look to the rehabilitated criminal as a source of inspiration and hope…”

“It wounds the society in whose name people are put to death as a punishment or a warning to others or because we’ve run out of ideas about how to respond to crime…”

“I am conscious of the irony of speaking like this while wearing a cross around my neck – a symbol of office. I know that it was a representation of an ancient implement of torture and execution. But it is not used to glorify or legitimise capital punishment. It represents the news that God is with us in the deepest, darkest, most cruel and pointless moments – sharing our suffering, and promising redemption, justice and peace”.

“It’s the cross that calls me to this vigil, to stand for mercy in the name God who is merciful”.

Originally published on Andrew’s blogsite

posted 20 Feb 2015 by Sandy