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Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Sister Helen, CSJ, New Orleans LA

“The Journey of Hope witnesses get on the road and tell their stories. That is what changes hearts. That’s why the Journey of Hope is so needed, not just in Virginia, but all across this land.

The movement to end the death penalty gained special credibility and life when murder victims’ families began to be the witnesses. You have people on this Journey of Hope – led by Bill Pelke, Bud Welch, and others – who have been there. The great thing that they give us is that they expose the illusion and deep political manipulation by those who have pressed murder victims’ families for the death penalty.

We tell the stories because people’s hearts have to change and be moved, but unless we bring them over to the other side to open up room for compassion, those feelings of outrage are so strong and so insistent that they beat down every other kind of argument or fact that you try to bring them because they keep thinking, “What about the victims? What about the victims?” That is why we have victims’ families take you through their journey. Nothing can be stronger than that.

How do we change hearts? We have a Journey of Hope and we get people on the road. It is a very sacrificial thing to do something like this. It is hard. It takes dedication and it takes love from the victims’ family members to keep telling their stories over and over again.

Let us put our energies with theirs; it’s the least we can do. Everybody should become an associate of the Journey of Hope and do whatever you can to support the Journey financially. Your contribution is appreciated to help turn death states into life states!”

Sister Helen Prejean places a Sunflower in Memory of lost loved ones during the 2005 Texas Journey of Hope