BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — The Vatican is asking Gov. John Bel Edwards to grant clemency to the prisoners on death row.
The Vatican wrote a letter to Edwards and asked him to encourage the Board of Pardons to docket the applications of prisoners on death row.
The letter said that the Catholic Church and all the Popes who served in the last 25 years have been working to abolish the death penalty all over the world.
Pope Francis has taken charge of ending capital punishment. While revising the Catechism of the Catholic Church in 2018, Francis called the death penalty “an attack on the inviolability and dignity of the person” and said it was “inadmissible in all cases” and “contrary to the Gospel.”
“In addition to our position of faith, the evidence against the death penalty is insurmountable,” the letter said. “In the United States, for every eight people executed, one innocent person has been exonerated. Moreover, it is disproportionately used against people of color and low-income individuals.”
“We think that the clearing of Louisiana’s death row would be a monumental step towards the abolition of the death penalty, that would deserve to also be an example for other states,” the letter said.
This week, multiple national civil rights organizations put together a letter to Edwards and the Louisiana Pardon Board about scheduling hearings for death row inmates.