News

October 2, 2020

The Episcopal Diocese of Atlanta’s Position:

Since 1958, Episcopal Church General Conventions have gone on record as rejecting the death penalty.
In 1976, When the Supreme Court of the United States reinstated the death penalty, Bishop Bennett Sims joined his Roman Catholic counterpart in opposing the resumption of executions.

– Georgia House BIll 702: Death Penalty Repeal Parish Action Kit. Download here.

Successive General Conventions, including in 2018, have reasserted the Episcopal Church’s opposition to capital punishment.
In his Feb. 28, 2020 For Faith message, Bishop Rob Wright called for replacing the death penalty with life without parole.


Saturday, October 10 is World Day Against the Death Penalty. This date is dedicated to raising awareness about the death penalty as well as providing resources to effectively advocate for better legal representation for individuals who may face a death sentence and for abolishing the death penalty. Mark this date by learning more about this issue and taking steps to advocate for a more compassionate system of justice.

Resources:

Nine Years After the Execution of Troy Davis, Innocent Black Men Are Still Being Sentenced to Death” by the Innocence Project: how racial bias still plays a role in the use of the death penalty.

Death Penalty Information Center

The Equal Justice Initiative

Research Report: Policy Advocacy on Criminal Justice by the Episcopal Church

Literature:

Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption the best-selling book Bryan Stevenson, or watch the movie based on the book of the same title.

A Case for Life, Justice, Mercy, and the Death Penalty co-written by Bishop Wright, faith leaders, and legal experts.
The five authors of this book make compelling arguments against the death penalty from their perspectives as lawyers, supreme court justice, and faith leaders. Their experiences with both victims and perpetrators also provide a moral case for ending the state-sponsored killing.