Celebrity Nun Called As Witness for the Defense of Boston Muslim Terrorist Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Helen Prejean: the only Catholic nun the NYT finds credible.
We at Fidelity and Action do enjoy seeing Sister Helen once again in the national spotlight. Notice how the terrorist is no longer portrayed as a terrorist in the media, below. No, he’s either a former college student or the Boston bomber.
1. “He was found guilty of all 30 charges, many of which carried the death penalty.”
2. “Defense attorney Judy Clarke, who has a track record of successfully defending killers against the death penalty, announced Sister Helen as one of two ‘potential’ witnesses on Wednesday while the jury was not in the courtroom.”
3. “The movie Dead Man Walking brought Sister Helen to national prominence. It charts her support for Elmo Patrick Sonnier, a convicted rapist and murderer who attempted to overturn the death penalty. ”
1. “The nun provided to jurors the first evidence of Mr. Tsarnaev feeling regret since he was captured and charged with killing three people and wounding 264 others at the 2013 marathon, as well as killing an M.I.T. police officer three days later.
2. Wearing street clothes, a silver cross dangling from her neck, Sister Helen Prejean, a Roman Catholic nun and prominent opponent of the death penalty, testified on Monday that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the convicted Boston Marathon bomber, had expressed sympathy for his victims.
3. Asked how his voice sounded as he spoke, Sister Prejean, 76, said: “It had pain in it, actually, when he said what he did about ‘nobody deserves that.’ I had every reason to think he was taking it in and he was genuinely sorry for what he did.”
4. “Their cross-examination was to point out what was obvious: She’s against the death penalty, and she’d be up there arguing against it even if it were Adolf Hitler,” said David Hoose, a defense lawyer in Northampton, Mass., who has argued death penalty cases. Still, Mr. Hoose said, Sister Prejean was a valuable witness because she carries moral authority and because if Mr. Tsarnaev felt any regret, she could convey sincerity about it better than he could.
1. “Her testimony was very significant. Remember, Tsarnaev has been sitting basically stone-faced through just about this entire trial, leaving jurors with absolutely no clue what’s going on in his head. So this witness was the first to shed a little light.”
2. “She says she met with Tsarnaev five times and that when they spoke about his crimes and his victims, he said, quote, “no one deserves to suffer like they did.” Sister Helen says that Tsarnaev lowered eyes, his voice sounded pained. She says she could see the emotion in his face, and she says she came away believing that he’s, quote, “genuinely sorry for what he did.” I should say that her testimony was clearly limited legally. There was a lot she couldn’t say, but she did manage to signal to jurors that there might be – might be – some remorse.
VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Pope Francis called for abolition of the death penalty as well as life imprisonment, and denounced what he called a “penal populism” that promises to solve society’s problems by punishing crime instead of pursuing social justice. “It is impossible to imagine that states today cannot make use of another means than capital punishment to defend peoples’ lives from an unjust aggressor,” the pope said Oct. 23 in a meeting with representatives of the International Association of Penal Law.
St. Peter’s Square Oct. 22 2014
“All Christians and people of good will are thus called today to struggle not only for abolition of the death penalty, whether it be legal or illegal and in all its forms, but also to improve prison conditions, out of respect for the human dignity of persons deprived of their liberty. And this, I connect with life imprisonment,” he said. “Life imprisonment is a hidden death penalty.”
Our response: Special Note for Americans: Disregard the Pope’s message re “improve prison conditions”; our prisons pamper inmates enough! Heck, they can even obtain sex reassignment surgery! Death Row inmates like Mumia Abu Jumal have fan clubs, a radio program, and write books. See widow Maureen Faulkner’s website dedicated to the truth about the death sentence Mumia imposed on her husband, Officer Daniel Faulkner.
The pope noted that the Vatican recently eliminated life imprisonment from its own penal code.
Our response: The population of Vatican City is only 839. Source.
According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, cited by Pope Francis in his talk, “the traditional teaching of the church does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor,” but modern advances in protecting society from dangerous criminals mean that “cases in which the execution of the offender is an absolute necessity are very rare, if not practically nonexistent.”
The pope said that, although a number of countries have formally abolished capital punishment, “the death penalty, illegally and to a varying extent, is applied all over the planet,” because “extrajudicial executions” are often disguised as “clashes with offenders or presented as the undesired consequences of the reasonable, necessary and proportionate use of force to apply the law.”
The pope denounced the detention of prisoners without trial, who he said account for more than 50 percent of all incarcerated people in some countries. He said maximum security prisons can be a form of torture, since their “principal characteristic is none other than external isolation,” which can lead to “psychic and physical sufferings such as paranoia, anxiety, depression and weight loss and significantly increase the chance of suicide.”
Our response: Being a victim of heinous violence can be a form of torture.
He also rebuked unspecified governments involved in kidnapping people for “illegal transportation to detention centers in which torture is practiced.”
The pope said criminal penalties should not apply to children, and should be waived or limited for the elderly, who “on the basis of their very errors can offer lessons to the rest of society. We don’t learn only from the virtues of saints but also from the failings and errors of sinners.”
The pope said some politicians and members of the media promote “violence and revenge, public and private, not only against those responsible for crimes, but also against those under suspicion, justified or not.”
He denounced a growing tendency to think that the “most varied social problems can be resolved through public punishment … that by means of that punishment we can obtain benefits that would require the implementation of another type of social policy, economic policy and policy of social inclusion.”
Our response: That paragraph is a Brain Twister.
Using techniques similar to those of racist regimes of the past, the pope said, unspecified forces today create “stereotypical figures that sum up the characteristics that society perceives as threatening.”
Our response: Jihadi terrorist [Image added by Fidelity and Action.]
Pope Francis concluded his talk by denouncing human trafficking and corruption, both crimes he said “could never be committed without the complicity, active or passive, of public authorities.”
Our response: Public Authority such as International Planned Parenthood Federation.
The pope spoke scathingly about the mentality of the typical corrupt person, whom he described as conceited, unable to accept criticism, and prompt to insult and even persecute those who disagree with him. “The corrupt one does not perceive his own corruption. It is a little like what happens with bad breath: someone who has it hardly ever realizes it; other people notice and have to tell him,” the pope said. “Corruption is an evil greater than sin. More than forgiveness, this evil needs to be cured.”
Our response: Let me think. How to cure corruption?Let’s invent prisons!
JUST IN TIME FOR HALLOWEEN: NUNS IN PANTSUITS! We copy our page here, the Sister Helen Prejean Dossier.
Profile. Death Penalty Abolitionist, Social Justice Activist, and Community Organizer; Author and Lecturer. Co-Founder of the Catholic Mobilizing Network. Sr. Prejean is based in the Archdiocese of New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a member of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Medaille. Her bishop is Archbishop Gregory Michael Aymond – 7887 Walmsley Ave., New Orleans LA 70125-3496 Phone: 504-861-9521 . Her blog.
This Dossier Exposes her BLINDNESS to the ABORTION holocaust; OBSESSION with GUILTY MURDERERS; DEFIANCE against traditional Catholic teaching; her connections with the NEW AGE FEMINISTS NUN MOVEMENTS and DISSENTING ORGANIZATIONS; and the ACLU.
“I’ve got to tell you what I’ve learned. When you start talking about the death penalty, there’s a deep religious underpinning. Who is God for us? It is God who demands an eye-for-an-eye. It is God who is pleased with sacrifice.
“And in the Christian tradition, there are those who say God allowed or even willed his own son, Jesus, to be sacrificed and killed on the cross in payment for our sins! And when we kill criminals we have chaplains in death houses! And when we kill criminals for their crimes God accepts their death in payment for their sins so they can go to heaven! What kind of god do we believe in?!
“What kind of father would demand the death of a son? Is this a god? Or is it an ogre, a monster, created by our own violent impulses? We project so this is God who wants vengeance, like we want vengeance. Truly there are contradictory images of God in the Bible. On which one will we model our lives?”
Source: Prejean’sSpeech at the 2008 Democratic Interfaith Gathering. Emphasis added.
You [Sister Helen Prejean] are a clear and present danger, not only to the survival of America, but to the Democrat Party. … In my opinion, she is more closely associated with being a witch than a nun.
We issue a public call for Idaho’s Catholic Bishop, Mike Driscoll, to intervene quickly and forcefully in the brewing scandal involving Sister Helen Prejean. As we reported earlier, she is scheduled to be the keynote speaker at an event to raise money for the Idaho ACLU.
Catholic League president William Donahue writes: It is no secret that the “peace and justice” crowd is soft on abortion. Sr. Helen Prejean and others like her can get quite worked up about the rights of serial murderers on death row, but they never seem to be quite as excited about the rights of innocent unborn babies. That’s because too many of them see abortion as merely unfortunate: They positively do not believe it is “intrinsically evil.”
I don’t trust candidates who claim to be “pro life” simply because they publicly state their opposition to abortion. What good is that if they do not also work vigorously and consistently to create social conditions in which healthy babies are born, children cared for, and families thrive?
I look for “pro-life” politicians to list “eradication of poverty” as a top priority. Poverty in our nation is on the rise. During the last six years those living at or below the poverty line in the U.S. rose 17 percent. To allow even the existence of poor people in this rich nation, much less poverty on the increase, is totally unworthy of us as Americans and certainly not pro-life.
” . . . the bishop had based his decision on his reading of an article about Prejean that was published in Our Sunday Visitor last April . Datillo had two concerns, Lyons said: that Prejean might be soft on abortion and might depart from official church teaching in a book she is writing about women in the church. Lyons told Mayhew that the bishop would therefore be “uncomfortable” appearing with the famous nun.
“The article about Prejean in Our Sunday Visitor was written by Robert Holton, a senior correspondent, based on an interview with her. Holton led off with Prejean’s views on abortion.
“Sister Prejean indicated that while she is adamant about not taking human life when it comes to executing prisoners, she has an at best strained appreciation for the church’s teachings on the sanctity of unborn life, on birth control, and thinks the church is `appallingly’ unfair to women,” Holton wrote. The subhead on the article read, “Why the nun behind Dead Man Walking has a hard time seeing abortion clinics as another kind of death row.”
Prejean told Holton that she regards abortion as “much more complex than a mere choice.”
As a Catholic, Prejean should understand the fundamental teaching of the Church on abortion and capital punishment because there is a nuanced difference.
On abortion, the Catechism of the Catholic Churchstates,”Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law”
On the death penalty, the Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “Today, in fact, as a consequence of the possibilities which the state has for effectively preventing crime, by rendering one who has committed an offense incapable of doing harmwithout definitely taking away from him the possibility of redeeming himselfthe cases in which the execution of the offender is an absolute necessity are very rare, if not practically non-existent.”
In other words, abortion is a crime against God while the death penalty is the exercise of a type of civil punishment in response to a heinous crime that is to be used rarely, if at all.
Combox: “I concluded that she would never touch abortion because she would loose support for her cause from those who support abortion, but oppose the death penalty, and she was not willing to take that risk. Can you imagine how differently she would be treated by the lamestream media if she publicly opposed abortion as well as the death penalty?”
‘CALL TO ACTION’ organization and Sr. Prejean – Prejean is a frequent speaker at this apostate organization. Her 2000 speech at CTA’s national conference is available on CTA’s site.
Call To Action is a well-known dissenting group of “Catholics” who actively undermine the faith. I have a copy of “Call To Action or Call To Apostasy? How dissenters plan to remake the Catholic Church in their own image” by Dr. Brian Clowes. The book is available at Human Life Intl. It is well researched with citations.
Sr. Prejean doubts the crucifixion of Christ: her appearance at an interfaith gathering for the Democratic National Committee
COLORADO CONVENTION CENTER — Following the hot topic of abortion, Sister Helen Prejean tackled another: calling for abolition of the death penalty to raucous applause at the DNC’s interfaith gathering.
She received nothing but a stony silence, however, when she questioned the basis of the biblical crucifixion story as a “projection of our violent society.”
“Is this a God?” Prejean asked about the belief that God allowed his son, Jesus, to be sacrificed for the sins of humanity. “Or is this an ogre?”
The audience — to that point in strong agreement with the author of “Dead Man Walking” — said and did nothing.
“Sr. Helen is delusional if she thinks her New Age gospel starring a God without wrath who brings men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross is going to persuade serious Christians to trust her when she talks about the death penalty.”
Where did the novel trend of “ecumenism” in the Catholic Church come from? You need to know about one of the council fathers, Father Yves Congar, an “expert” at Vatican II.
In the Maryknoll book by National Catholic Reporter veteran writer Robert McClory, FAITHFUL DISSENTERS: Stories of Men and Women Who Loved and CHANGED the Church, one chapter is devoted to Father Yves Congar. McClory is sympathetic to the changes Congar made which has weakened the mission of the Church.
The chapter is an eye opener. Open the pdf of Chapter Nine, below:
“Heinous Crimes Deserve Death Penalty” – Sister Helen Prejean
We’re not taking her words and twisting them. She really did say this . . .
We found a VIDEO of a 2011 interview of death penalty abolitionist and activist Sister Helen Prejean.
HOST: “In your view could there ever be any crimes that are so heinous enough to deserve death?”
PREJEAN: “Maybe there are crimes that are deserving of death. But the big moral question we have is who deserves to kill the person who did the crime?”
SAY WHAT? Read our partial transcript below the video . . .which we watched only the first seven minutes of.
SISTER HELEN on the Dignity of the Human Person.
(Editor’s note: this Catholic teaching did not exist before Vatican II.*)
SUMMARY: During the interview, she name-drops Pope JPII – her dialogue with him about the dignity of the human person. She says a death row inmate in chains is not dignity. And neither is the death penalty.
PREJEAN: “The heart of the moral question, and this is in the dialogue I had with Pope John Paul about my Catholic faith and its stance on the death penalty – is that when I’m walking with an individual – granted who’s guilty of a horrible crime that I am abhorred by and he’s chained hand and foot — and he says to me, “Sister pray that I hold up my legs as I make the walk.” I said to the Holy Father, does the Church only uphold the dignity of innocent life? He’s not innocent! But then he’s rendered defenseless, and he’s strapped down, and he’s killed after he’s waited 30 days, counting off the days, or maybe a last minute stay.
“This is not dignity of human life. That’s why essentially the Death Penalty is wrong. It’s against human rights and it’s against the dignity of the person.”
end transcript provided by FIDELITY and ACTION
*THE PROBLEMS WITH DIGNITATIS HUMANAE
Vatican II’s doctrineon the dignity of the human person has been deemed problematic by many traditional Catholics. Among those who have written about those problems are Archbishop Lefebvre and Michael Davies.
What is dignity? According to Catholic tradition, man derives dignity from his perfection, i.e, from his knowledge of the truth and his acquisition of the good. Man is worthy of respect in accordance with his intention to obey God, not in accordance with his errors, which will inevitably lead to sin. When Eve the first sinner succumbed, she said, “The serpent deceived me.” Her sin and that of Adam led to the downfall of human dignity, from which we have suffered ever since. Source: ‘Open Letter To Confused Catholics.’
The title of the Declaration itself, “The Dignity of the Human Person,” epitomizes the man-centered ethos of the Declaration. It is no longer the rights of Christ the King which must take priority but the so called rights of contemporary man, rights which he ascribes to himself in virtue of what is said to be his developing consciousness of his own dignity. In an address to the last Council meeting, on the very day of the promulgation of the Declaration, Pope Paul VI remarked:
One must realize that this Council, which exposed itself to human judgement, insisted very much more upon this pleasant side of man, rather than his unpleasant one. Its attitude was very much and deliberately optimistic. A wave of affection and admiration flowed from the Council over the modern world of humanity. Errors were condemned, indeed, because charity demanded this no less than did truth, but for the persons themselves there was only warning, respect, and love. Instead of depressing diagnoses, encouraging remedies; instead of direful prognostics, messages of trust issued from the Council to the present-day world. The modern world’s values were not only respected but honoured, its efforts approved, its aspirations purified and blessed.
Catholic opponents of the death penalty sometimes seem to lose sight of the primary purpose of punishment. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (final text) says, “Punishment has the primary aim of redressing the disorder introduced by the offense.”