Calendar of Events
Social Justice Book Study: Just Mercy
Category: Grow and Learn
Tuesday 18 July 2017
06:30pm - 08:00pm
Tuesdays from July 11-August 15
“There have never been more innocent people incarcerated [in America] than now.” - Bryan Stevenson
As a young man at Harvard Law School, Bryan Stevenson wasn’t even sure he wanted to be a lawyer. He found the education at this prestigious institution esoteric and disconnected from the issues of race and poverty. So perhaps it was Grace that led him to an internship at the Southern Center for Human Rights in 1983. There, as an anxious novice, he was sent to meet his first death row inmate. That encounter—with its deep discomfort, human connection, and glint of hope—led this gifted young attorney to an extraordinary life of meaning.
Rob Warden, director emeritus of the Center on Wrongful Convictions at Northwestern University School of Law, asserts that for thirty years, “Stevenson has won relief for scores of condemned prisoners; exonerated a number of innocent ones; fought to end the death penalty and life sentences without parole for juveniles; and confronted, with admirable albeit limited success, abuse of the mentally ill, the mentally handicapped and children in prison.”
Stevenson’s memoir, Just Mercy turns its laser vision onto the criminal justice system in America and introduces the reader to a number of men, women, and youth Stevenson has defended. This “visionary founder and executive director of the Montgomery (Alabama)-based Equal Justice Initiative, surely has done as much as any other living American to vindicate the innocent and temper justice with mercy for the guilty — efforts that have brought him, among myriad honors, a MacArthur genius grant and honorary degrees from Yale, Penn and Georgetown “ (Rob Warden).
Join with other COH brothers and sisters in a journey both disturbing and hopeful as we hone our insights into the workings of criminal justice, reflect upon what creates a life of meaning, and consider how we might engage in the work of justice ourselves.