Sr. Helen Prejean to lecture at Regis College

  • April 18, 2010
Prejean PosterTORONTO - Well-known capital punishment opponent Sr. Helen Prejean, C.S.J., will be giving the inaugural lecture honouring the prison ministry of the late Fr. Martin Royackers, who was murdered in Jamaica nine years ago.

Royackers was 41 when he was gunned down in front of his parish in Annotto Bay, Jamaica.

The April 20 lecture is being sponsored by Regis College, the Jesuit graduate Faculty of Theology at the University of Toronto. It will be held at St. Joseph Chapel.

Prejean is best known for her work with prison inmates on death row which was highlighted in the Oscar-award winning movie Dead Man Walking, based upon her ministry.

Sr. Elaine MacInnes, O.L.M., will be taking part in the discussion after Prejean’s talk. MacInnes is best known for her work teaching prisoners about meditation as a source of inner healing and peace.

“It’s universally accepted now that meditation is very important. It’s very therapeutic,” said the founder of Freeing The Human Spirit, a Canadian-based charity.

Regis College president Fr. Joseph Schnerr said having Prejean and MacInnes together at the lecture highlights the importance of prison ministry work and also pays tribute to Royackers’ prison outreach in Jamaica.

“For all of us, it’s a good reminder that (prisoners) are members of our community as well,” Schnerr said.

The importance of the talk also ties in to a potential ministry for Regis College students, he added.

“It’s one of the great works of mercy, to visit and take care of prisoners,” Schnerr said.

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