The teachings of the Gospel challenge us to engage the realities of our world in ways that take us beyond the surface. As we reflect on the realities of our world today, we understand that prisons are not a place for rehabilitation and reintegration into society. Vengeance begets violence as people are condemned by the death penalty. Racial disparities are integral pieces of maintaining white supremacy through the courts, from cash bail to mandatory minimums. Corporate interests and profit are furthered through the growing presence of private prisons. As Christians working towards a more just society, we believe there is a moral imperative for the criminal justice system to serve as an agent of rehabilitation, rather than a vehicle for oppression and exploitation.
We direct our energy for criminal justice reform at two aspects of the larger system: cash bail and capital punishment. Below you will find resources, ways to take action, and community updates on cash bail and the death penalty.
Resources on the Death Penalty
NC Council of Churches
- Abolition Sabbath Weekend Toolkit
- Legislative Bulletin: Faith and the Death Penalty
- Resolution on the Death Penalty
- Voices Archive (Op-Eds)
- Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) Resolution on the Death Penalty
- Episcopal Church Statement on Federal Executions
- Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
- Global Ministries (Disciples of Christ & United Church of Christ) Death Penalty Teaching Material
- Mennonite Church USA
- Presbyterian Church USA
- United Church of Christ
- United Methodist Church
Resources on Cash Bail
NC Council of Churches
Take Action on the Death Penalty
The North Carolina Council of Churches is promoting the weekend of Oct. 8-10, 2021, as Death Penalty Abolition Sabbath and are encouraging all faith communities to learn, preach, and pray about this matter. Please use the toolkit provided –key scriptures, sermon starter, litany, and prayers– on this abolition sabbath weekend and share with your denominations and faith groups in your local communities. This abolition sabbath has been planned by the North Carolina Coalition for Alternatives to the Death Penalty in which the Council is a member.
JOIN THE COALITION
The NC Coalition for Alternatives to the Death Penalty, in which the Council is a founding member, is a group of people, organizations and faith communities from across North Carolina who are working to end the death penalty and spread the message that capital punishment is wrong, unjust and racist. Join us!
- Follow NCCADP on Facebook and Twitter. Please like and share.
- Visit nccadp.org, which is full of data, stories, photos, video and more.
- Sign up to receive NCCADP’s newsletter.
- Invite them to speak, offer a panel of impacted voices, or facilitate a discussion about race and the death penalty with your congregation. Email Noel Nickle, firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Donate to their work at nccadp.org/donate. We are a 501(c)(3) organization.
Community Updates on the Death Penalty
Proposed solutions to the death penalty:
- Commute all state death sentences.
- Pass legislation to repeal the statewide death penalty.
- Direct the Department of Public Safety to dismantle the death chamber at Central Prison.