The state of Alabama plans to execute Nathaniel Woods on Thursday, March 5, 2020 for his role in the 2004 murders of Birmingham police officers Harley Alfred Chisholm III, 40, Carlos Winston “Curly” Owen, 58, and Charles Robert Bennett, 33.
The Catholic Church teaches that the death penalty is unacceptable in all cases because it is "an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person." (Catholic Catechism 2267)
Mr. Woods' attorneys have advised that sending letters asking for clemency would not be helpful for Mr. Woods' case. No letters are requested on his behalf at this time.
At times like these we may feel at a loss of what to do in the face of such egregious acts of violence. These are the moments when we pray for God's guidance and Grace. Please pray, on behalf of Nathaniel Woods that he may come to know God's peace and ever-present mercy.
God of Mercy,
You bestow upon every person a dignity that cannot be extinguished, no matter the harm someone has suffered or caused.
Rooted in this sacred value of all life, we work together to transform the criminal justice system by ending the death penalty. Enliven our commitment to “work with determination for its abolition worldwide.”
Ignite in our imaginations more restorative approaches to harm and violence that embody Your vision of right relationship. For any person who is a victim of, responsible for, or witness to crime, may we be vessels of Your hope, healing, and redemption.
Embolden in us the fire to foster a culture of life. Sustain our pursuit of reconciling justice, that we may model your compassion and mercy with our lives.
In Jesus’ name we pray.