It isn't very easy to follow the rules even for a Christian because if someone does something horrible to you, you would want to return the insult and hurt them. If they find it hard to forgive they often pray to God to give them strength to do it. An example of a Christian who has lived out Jesus' teachings and forgiveness and love of enemy is Corrie Ten Boom, when she forgave the people who killed her sister and an ex-guard at the concentration camp during the Second World War. When Peter asked Jesus about the number of times he should forgive people, Jesus said that you should keep on forgiving non-stop. Even if someone does something that is really wrong then you should still be willing to forgive.
After a while Elizabeth and Kurt are found murdered and Shay is convicted with the murder. The trial starts and all the jury agrees that he is guilty and should be sentenced with death penalty however, one of the jury members was hesitant to sentence him, but the jury manages to convince him. Eleven years later shay is moved to the I-tire prison next to the cell of Lucius DuFresne a homosexual who murdered his lover after he found him cheating on him, also he has HIV. Shay tells him that he wants to save a little girl whom he saw on TV who needs a heart. The girl on TV is the daughter of June, Claire who has a terminal heart disease.
At the beginning of the film, the viewer is lead to believe that maybe Poncelot did not actually commit the crime, so someone might believe that his execution would be unfair. During the course of the film, the viewer sees the affects of the victim’s family and the community reactions, and whoever is watching probably feels that whoever actually committed the crime should definitely be punished as harshly as possible. When Poncelot tells Helen that he did indeed commit the crime, the viewer’s feelings about him receiving the death penalty probably change again, but there is so much emotion going on in the scene that one can not help but feel sorry.
People often times single me out for being a christian. They just love asking me about touchy subjects to see my response. And this is because, unfortunately, there are so many christians who have this idea that the whole world needs to see things the same way they do. You see so much hate coming out of a religion that claims to preach peace and love. Christians see it as protecting the bible but it just comes across as ignorant.
The book is based on Sister Helen Prejean’s experiences with inmates on death row. Sister Helen receives a letter from prisoner Matthew Poncelet. Due to a horrible murder to which he claims only to have been an observer, he is now on death row, waiting for his execution. He requests her to come visiting him. In the next few days we follow Sister Helens conversations with Matthew, his family and the families of the two teenagers brutally raped and killed.
Dead Man Walking shows the audience what life is like for a man on death row, who was sentenced for the murder of two young adults. I feel that the movie does not support the death penalty and it tries to show that a person can be redeemed for his actions and therefore should not be put to death. “The film definitely has its opinion on the death penalty, it is against it” (Williams). Even though I support the death penalty, I still feel that the movie accurately described what life on death row was like for Matthew Poncelet. At the beginning of the movie Matthew Poncelet had no respect for life and death, he had never really thought about the life he was taking away from the two young adults.
I will also include church's opinions. Since the early years, when the death penalty was first introduced, people have thought it was an act of evil. Many people have thought it to be an easy way out to get justice. Rather than making the criminal suffer what they have done, they are getting their life taken from them. People thought that if a criminal was going to punished they should be punished in a way that they suffered for a long time, just like Jesus did, when he was crucified.
The Problem of Human Suffering The Christian tradition is haunted by a significant mark: Suffering. The question that arises from this suffering is if God is the omnipitous being that Christians believe Him to be, why would He let His people, whom he loves, suffer great pains and horrible deaths? According to premises derived from theologians and followers of the Bible, God is "all loving". If that is true, then God would not want His people to suffer, but by just looking around us we see that suffering, in fact, is happening. If there is suffering going on that God does not want, then He would be able to stop that suffering since He also believed to be "all powerful", yet suffering still goes on.
Jesus is saying that forgiveness is for everyone even first degree murders. Furthermore that person needs the opportunity to hear His words, then given the chance to respond. “But to be forgiven is not also to obviate the civic consequences that flowed from the act of snatching away someone else life prematurely…these premeditated murders must be requited” (Kaiser 134). The Salvation Army’s position on capital punishment is “that the opinions of Salvationists are divided …However, to advocate in any way the continuance or restoration of capital punishment in any part of the world would be inconsistent with the Army’s purposes and contrary to the Army’s belief that all human life is sacred and that each human being,… can become a new person in Christ” (IHQ). In a nutshell the Army does not support nor condone capital punishment, because it does not allow for repentance and Salvation.
Through self enlightenment and the study of the law, Penn’s character is able to right his own motion to the Court of Appeals. However, being the impoverished inmate that he is, he cannot find an attorney to try his case, therefore, he cannot file the motion. He calls on Sister Helen, a nun against the death penalty played by Sarandon, for comfort and to help him find a lawyer to file his motion. All of his appeals are denied and his execution date is set. Just minutes before his sentence is carried out he confesses one of the murders and the rape to Sister Helen in order to redeem himself to the Lord.