Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis: Sister Helen Prejean of Dead Man Walking fame.

Via on May 18, 2009

Sister Helen Prejean

My interview with Sister Helen Prejean.

A Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis on location special at Naropa University.

The nun behind the best-selling Dead Man Walking best-selling book and movie (in which she was played by Susan Sarandon) offers a Christianity that’s about mercy, compassion, forgiveness, humor—a Christianity that simultaneously transcends and directly engages politics. Because life’s too short, and precious, for judgment or class welfare!

“It’s all about waking up,” Sister Helen says. Amen to that!

Walk the Talk Show: Sister Helen Prejean from Alex King & Mito Media.

Shot on location at Naropa University – Boulder Colorado

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16 Responses to “Walk the Talk Show with Waylon Lewis: Sister Helen Prejean of Dead Man Walking fame.”

  1. Heather says:

    So frustrated my computer must be too old for the newest vimeo videos! Can't get this video to come through except in staggered blips. What I can hear is profound. Hearing the words, the story from her mouth, puts life in perspective pretty quickly..the story of the two fathers from Columbine takes your breath away. Your honest and open questions make this a very special interview. This is an interview that should be posted everywhere. People need to hear her message of forgiveness and hear what true Christianity is as opposed to the institution and "religion". I hope you post this on youtube as well.

  2. Alex King alex says:

    If the video doesn't come through, try pushing the "turn off HD button"

  3. Roger Wolsey Rev. Roger Wolsey says:

    …Mr. Sharp overstates his case by asserting that "Had rapist/murderer Matthew Poncelet not been properly sentenced to death by the civil authority, he would not have met Sister Prejean, he would not have received spiritual instruction, he would not have taken responsibility for his crimes and he would not have reconciled with God." While Poncelt might not have met Prejean if he hadn't been on death row, how could Sharp possibly assert that that would be the only way for Poncelt to have had spiritual instruction or to have come to God?"

    Talk about creating Fiction.

    Rev. Roger Wolsey, Wesley Foundation a CU Boulder, http://www.wesleyf.org

  4. Roger Wolsey Rev. Roger Wolsey says:

    Mr. Sharp overstates his case by asserting that "Had rapist/murderer Matthew Poncelet not been properly sentenced to death by the civil authority, he would not have met Sister Prejean, he would not have received spiritual instruction, he would not have taken responsibility for his crimes and he would not have reconciled with God." While Poncelt might not have met Prejean if he hadn't been on death row, how could Sharp possibly assert that that would be the only way for Poncelt to have had spiritual instruction or to have come to God?"

    Talk about creating Fiction.

    Rev. Roger Wolsey, Wesley Foundation, Boulder CO http://www.wesleyf.org

  5. Roger Wolsey Rev. Roger Wolsey says:

    … part II: Mr. Sharp overstates his case by asserting that "Had rapist/murderer Matthew Poncelet not been properly sentenced to death by the civil authority, he would not have met Sister Prejean, he would not have received spiritual instruction, he would not have taken responsibility for his crimes and he would not have reconciled with God." While Poncelt might not have met Prejean if he hadn't been on death row, how could Sharp possibly assert that that would be the only way for Poncelt to have had spiritual instruction or to have come to God?"

    Talk about creating Fiction.

    Rev. Roger Wolsey, Wesley Foundation, Boulder, CO http://www.wesleyf.org

    • Dudley Sharp says:

      Context is very important. You left out the rational for the clarity.

      The following paragraphs explained the reason for my assertions and the word "may" was used twice as a hedge for my earlier assertions. Furthermore, I was dealing with the film character Poncelet, which gives me much more latitude.

      This is the context and note the circumstance when I switch to the real human being, whose comments I have confirmed as true.

      Had Poncelet never been caught or had he only been given a prison sentence, his character makes it VERY clear that those elements would not have come together. Indeed, for the entire film and up until those last moments, prior to his execution, Poncelet was not truthful with Sister Prejean. His lying and manipulative nature was fully exposed at that crucial time. It was not at all surprising, then, that it was just prior to his execution that all of the spiritual elements may have come together for his salvation. It was now, or never.

      contd

      • Dudley Sharp says:

        contd 1 Truly, just as St. Aquinas stated, it was Poncelet's pending execution which may have led to his repentance. For Christians, the most crucial concerns of Dead Man Walking must be and are redemption and eternal salvation.__ __For that reason, it may well be, for Christians, the most important pro-death penalty movie ever made.__ __ In the book, murderer Patrick Sonnier stated: "I don't want to leave this world with any hatred in my heart. I want to ask your forgiveness for what me and Eddie done, but Eddie done it".__ __Prejean says: "(Patrick Sonnier) seems to accept that he is responsible for what had happened, even though he claims not to have killed the teenagers. … I suspend judgment. With the electric chair waiting, with death close like this, who the triggerman was seems not the point."__ __The most important point of any Christian ministry is salvation. If the most important part of any Christian ministry is saving souls, and Sonnier is lying, and redemption is undermined, that seems a very important point. What could be a more important point for a death row ministry? Ending the death penalty?__

  6. Dudley Sharp says:

    What Constantine did was assert that which was biblically and theologically correct.

    Quaker, biblical scholar Dr. Gervas A. Carey: " . . . the decree of Genesis 9:5-6 is equally enduring and cannot be separated from the other pledges and instructions of its immediate context, Genesis 8:20-9:17; . . . that is true unless specific Biblical authority can be cited for the deletion, of which there appears to be none."

    "It seems strange that any opponents of capital punishment who professes to recognize the authority of the Bible either overlook or disregard the divine decree in this covenant with Noah; . . . capital punishment should be recognized . . . as the divinely instituted penalty for murder; The basis of this decree . . . is as enduring as God; . . . murder not only deprives a man of a portion of his earthly life . . . it is a further sin against him as a creature made in the image of God and against God Himself whose image the murderer does not respect." (p. 111-113)"

  7. Dudley Sharp says:

    contd

    Carey agrees with Saints Augustine and Aquinas, that executions represent mercy to the wrongdoer:

    ". . . a secondary measure of the love of God may be said to appear. For capital punishment provides the murderer with incentive to repentance which the ordinary man does not have, that is a definite date on which he is to meet his God. It is as if God thus providentially granted him a special inducement to repentance out of consideration of the enormity of his crime . . . the law grants to the condemned an opportunity which he did not grant to his victim, the opportunity to prepare to meet his God. Even divine justice here may be said to be tempered with mercy." (p. 116).

    synopsis of "A Bible Study".from Essays on the Death Penalty, T. Robert Ingram, ed., St. Thomas Press, Houston, 1963, 1992. Dr. Carey was a Professor of Bible and past President of George Fox College.

  8. Dudley Sharp says:

    Rev. Wosley repeats a common and irrational anti death penalty saying: " it is oxymoronic to kill people to teach people that killing people is wrong."

    Even with no sanction, most folks know that committing murder is wrong. We execute guilty murderers who have murdered innocent people. The difference between crime and punishment, guilty murderers and their innocent victims is very clear to most.

    The moral confusion exists when people blindly accept the amoral or immoral position that all killing is equal.

    The anti death penalty folks are looking at an act — "killing" — and saying all killings are the same. Only an amoral person would equate acts, without considering the purpose behind them.

    For those, like some anti death penalty folks, who believe all killing is morally equivalent, they would equate the slaughter of 6 million innocent Jews and 6-7 million additional innocents with the execution of those guilty murderers committing that slaughter. They would also equate the rape and murder of children with the execution of the rapist/murderer.

    contd

  9. Dudley Sharp says:

    contd

    This is what the anti death penalty folks do, morally equate killing (murder) with the punishment for that murder, another killing (execution).

    For such anti death penalty folks to be consistent, they must also equate holding people against their will (illegal kidnapping) with the sanction for it, the holding people against their will (legal incarceration) or the taking money away from people (illegal robbery) with a sanction for that, taking money away from people (legal restitution).

    Most folks understand the moral differences.

    Some anti death penalty folks are either incapable of knowing the moral differences between crime and punishment, guilty criminals and their innocent victims, or they are knowingly using a dishonest slogan by equating killing (murder) with killing (execution).

  10. Roger Wolsey Rev. Roger Wolsey says:

    4. Augustine and Aquinas had many great thoughts about the faith, but they certainly had the effect of bastardizing the faith by accommodating it to worldy norms and values.
    5. I'm amazed that you came across this article that was just published in an obscure magazine from Boulder. If I'm not mistaken, you neither live in Boulder, nor Colorado. It occurs to me that you may have some sort of odd obsession with Helen Prejean that compels you to google her name everyday to seek out new articles and news reports about her so that you can lob in your 2cents worth of criticism of her. Did she sell you a bad car one time or something?

  11. Dudley Sharp says:

    In Christian bilical and theological studies, Sainst Augustine and Aquinas stand above all others, as per my review of the literature, as well as in discussions with many scholars. You are free to disagree, of course.

    There is no need for you to turn personal. I sent my essay on Sr. Prejean, so that your readership would have a balance for perspective. The fact that you elected not to review the blantant errors and contradictions of Sr. Prejean speaks volumes., as you know.

    My concentration is on a balance of ideas within the death penalty debate, as well a a consitent and fact based challenge to many erroneous anti death penalty claims. Sr. Prejean is but one, highly visible, part of that effort.

    You indicated your value of her importance by plaing the video on your site. I concur with that value and, therefore, added a different perspective. That is what public policy debate is all about.

    Don't you agree?

  12. Dudley SHarp says:

    Rev. Wolsey:

    In my reading of the literature and in my conversations with scholars, Saints Augustine and Aquinas stand alone as the preeminant biblical scholars, theologians and philosophers. You are of course, free, to put them on your own trash heap as "bastardizing the faith". I think you injure your credibility by doing so.

    You put Prejean's video up because you find her words important, just as I do. Words matter, thus my proper response to her.

    It is important for any public policy debate to have an exchange of ideas and fact checking. I am sure that you agree.

    The fact that you did not review the important factual rebuttals to her work speaks volumes, as you know.

    Your used car remark is a bad sign that you are headed toward immature discussion. Please don't go there.

    The www makes geographic location irrelevant.

  13. Roger Wolsey Rev. Roger Wolsey says:

    Dudley, I fully agree with you about the importance fo public policy debate and what it's all about. FYI, this website is not mine, I'm merely a dude with an opinion like you who is posting on this forum. That said, re: "The ONLY reason I present the material is in the context of Christian support for the death penalty. That is the topic I am dealing with." So, in THAT context, shall I take it that you support the "Biblical" assertions that homosexuals and persons found guilty of adultery should be given the death penalty? If not, why hot?

  14. Dudley Sharp says:

    Brother Rog duplicates one of the obvious errors of the Catechism.____The Catechism finds that we should end the death penalty in order to provide alternate sanctions "without definitively taking away from him the possibility of redeeming himself" (2267)____First, the Catechism appears to be reversing the redemption process – the Catechism states, above, that the wrongdoer redeems himself. The biblical/theological realities appear to find that all wrongdoers can/should seek redemption, but that God provides redemption to the wrongdoer by His grace.__ __Secondly,the Church is, hereby, stating that the death penalty is "taking away from him (the executed party) the possibility of redeeming himself". __ __The Catechism is stating that the God invoked sanction of death takes away the possibility of redemption. Think about that. There is nothing to defend such a claim, in such a context.__ __All of our sins have us die "early". Is there a case, whereby God has erased the possibility of our redemption, solely because of our earthly and "early" deaths? Such an interpretation is, in context, flatly, against God's message and cannot stand.____contd

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