In November 2018, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) released its long-anticipated pastoral letter against racism, Open Wide Our Hearts: The Enduring Call to Love. This prayer closes the letter. It is a call for Catholics and all people of goodwill to combat racial injustices with love and unity.
Prayers and Vigils
Take part in a new prayer initiative created by Eric Williams, a current Texas death row inmate. Every Friday Evening at 8:00 PM Central, death row inmates around the nation are invited to pray the sorrowful mysteries of the rosary "in unity of purpose for an end to the death penalty, the intentions of those inmates currently on death row, and overall prison reform."
Inspired by the need for mercy in our society, this prayer vigil includes reflections on scripture and intersections for all those in need of healing. Centered around the call to end the death penalty, this vigil can serve as a thoughtful prayer tool in those times leading up to and in the aftermath of an execution.
This prayer serves to remind us of the unconditional opportunity for redemption that, as God's children, we all share. Pray it alone or with others in community, asking God to "sustain our pursuit of reconciling justice, that we may model Christ's compassion and mercy with our lives."
The culture of life we seek is built on a foundation of prayer. The Holy Hour of Mercy is a resource that guides you through an hour of praying for life and an end to the death penalty. Prayers in this hour include the St. Michael Prayer, The Divine Mercy Chaplet, and a Litany for Life. This guided holy hour can be used to lead a group in a prayer service for and an end to the Death Penalty or can be used by an individual during a personal holy hour.
Intended for use in the days and hours surrounding an execution, CMN's Prayer Vigil for an Execution allows participants to reflect on the themes of forgiveness and mercy in the face of the death penalty. The service invites all to lift up the dignity of life and pray for those impacted by violence, deepening our collective commitment to the work to end capital punishment.