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For on-going information on Respect Life issues, read the Life Issues Forum bi-weekly columns from the USCCB.  (Click here.)

Death Penalty

Consistency in the abhorrence of violence is the hallmark of the Church's teaching on the death penalty. In the Culture of Life and the Death Penalty the U.S. Bishops also point to the fact that state-sanctioned killing diminishes us all, the application of capital punishment is flawed and inconsistent, and that the state has other ways of punishing criminals.

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January 11, 2018 Abortion & Procreation, Bioethics, Death Penalty, End of Life: Legal and Policy Issues, Health Care, Reverence for Life

Every year, near the anniversary of the infamous Roe v. Wade decision, people of faith around the United States gather to witness for life.  Several dioceses in California are planning major events or participating with other like-minded groups to promote a reverence for life:

One Life LA – Los Angeles, Saturday, January 20, 2018

Walk for Life West Coast – San Francisco, Saturday, January 27, 2018

March 20, 2017 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life, Restorative Justice

In an odd and unexplained rule change proposal, California may ban chaplains from meeting with death row prisoners nearer than three hours before their scheduled execution.

The California Department of Corrections (CDCR) is engaged in a detailed revision of its procedures for ending the lives of prisoners sentenced to death. The elaborate set of rules specifies in minute detail death drug formulation, testing, staff training, protocols and numerous other aspects of executions.

November 9, 2016 Death Penalty, News, News

The following statement was released by Edward “Ned” Dolejsi, executive director of the California Catholic Conference of Bishops:

“Yesterday’s elections were the culmination of a long and contentious election season marked by cynicism and alienation.  Nevertheless, California’s voters fulfilled their civic duty and placed their votes.   The democratic process, once again, demonstrates that the will of the people is sovereign.

June 23, 2016 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life

The initiative to eliminate the use of California’s death penalty law has officially qualified for this November’s ballot.

The measure to revoke capital punishment in the state collected almost 405,000 signatures – well above the 365,000 verifiable signatures required for certification.

California, the most populous state in the country, has the largest population of death row inmates. Repealing the law would change the death sentences of almost 750 convicted inmates to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

January 14, 2016 Death Penalty, Restorative Justice

After having its death penalty protocols repeatedly ruled unconstitutional, California will once again attempt to rewrite the process to comply with court rulings.  The California Catholic Conference will be among many speaking out against the use of the death penalty and the protocols at a hearing next Friday.

October 29, 2012 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life

SAN ANTONIO (October 29, 2012) –The Catholic Association of Latino Leaders (CALL), a national organization of Hispanic business and professional people with chapters in Los Angeles and Orange County, today publicly endorsed Proposition 34--the Death Penalty Repeal Initiative.

September 19, 2012 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life

The following, prepared by Andrew Rivas, Director of the Office of the Vicar for Clergy in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, are some reflections on the death penalty and its history that might be useful in talks, homilies and presentations:

May 18, 2012 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life

Reprinted with permission from California People of Faith.

Rev. Michael Carson, Pastor of Queen of Apostles Church in the Diocese of San Jose and member of the State Board of California People of Faith Working Against the Death Penalty, recently interviewed Jeanne Woodford, executive director of Death Penalty Focus (DPF). DPF is the largest organization working to abolish the death penalty in California.

May 17, 2012 Death Penalty, Reverence for Life

By Bishop Cirilo Flores, coadjutor bishop of the Diocese of San Diego. Reposted from U.T. San Diego.

This year, in the Easter season, San Diego reels from two recent murders – a young Iraqi mother of five and a 14-year-old boy visiting friends with his brother. Our community comes together in grief and to comfort the families who have lost loved ones. We recognize their profound pain.

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