Easter and Christmas Marches to St. Peter´s

Easter March, Rome, April 2007

13 May 2017 :

  • In 1994 and 1995 Easter became an occasion to ask the Catholic Church and the Pope to speak out against the death penalty. It was in fact at Easter, in 1995, that Pope John Paul II pronounced, through the Evangelism Vitae Encyclical, a categorical "no" to the death penalty. The New Catechism, which still considered the death penalty to be legitimate, was then rewritten on the basis of the Evangelism Vitae.
  • On 25 December 1998, Hands off Cain organised a Christmas March to ask the Pope and the UN Secretary-general to take up the appeal for a moratorium on executions. During his blessing of Rome and the world, the Pope asked the countries that still carried out the death penalty to ban it. The message was broadcast in world vision to 45 countries, and reached many others through press and television reports.
  • On 8 April 2007, Hands Off Cain, the Transnational Radical Party (TRP), the Community of Saint’Egidio, the Italian Radicals and with the support of 16 ministers of the Prodi Government promoted the Ester march in support of a UN moratorium of capital executions.
    The march started from the Rome Capitol Hill and reached the Saint Peter Square when Pope Benedict XVI was delivering his traditional Easter address.
    The initiative aimed at reinforcing the unanimous commitment of the Italian Parliament and Government to introduce a resolution calling for a moratorium of capital executions at the 2007 UN General Assembly that would establish a new human and civil right for humanity as a whole.
    In support of the mobilization, the Leader of the Nonviolent Radical Party Marco Pannella was on hunger strike since 21 March last.