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Please wear a black arm or wrist band tomorrow in silent protest of the state of Virginia’s execution of Kevin Green.  Mr. Green is scheduled to die Tuesday night at 9:00PM at the Greensville Correctional Center in Jarratt, Virginia for the 1998 slaying of Patricia Vaughan.

Medical testing of Kevin Green found he has an IQ less than 70, qualifying him as “mentally retarded”. This class of our citizens was accorded special protection by the United States Supreme Court, excepting them from the sentence of death.  Virginia is openly flaunting that ruling from the highest court in our land.  Further, in order to get the death penalty in this case prosecutors used Mr. Green’s indictment for murder in another case to show “future dangerousness”.  He was subsequently acquitted in the case, making its use in this case invalid and leading to a mortally flawed sentence.  Virginia must cancel this illegal execution immediately!

Jesus, the Blessed One, mourns. Jesus mourns when his friend Lazarus dies (see John 11:33-36); he mourns when he overlooks the city of Jerusalem, soon to be destroyed (see Luke 19:41-44). Jesus mourns over all losses and devastations that fill the human heart with pain. He grieves with those who grieve and sheds tears with those who cry.

The violence, greed, lust, and so many other evils that have distorted the face of the earth and its people causes the Beloved Son of God to mourn. We too have to mourn if we hope to experience God’s consolation.

The Bible is a “worldly” book in the sense that it sees God at the very center of man’s life, his work, his relations with his fellow man, his play and his joy.

Thomas Merton. Opening the Bible (Collegeville, MN: The Liturgical Press, 1970): 65.