Sister Helen Prejean moved to help at St. Thomas Housing Project in New Orleans. She worked at Hope House from 1984 – 1986. While in New Orleans she was the spiritual Adviser for an inmate named Elmo Patrick Sonnier. Sonnier, Pat as she calls him, was on death row.
Sister Prejean Discusses her journey.
Sister Prejean made note that people get less time for saying that the other person is guilty or responsible. From being told this how are we to determine who is the worse criminal? She brought up the question, can giving the death penalty heal the family’s hearts? Can it heal the torn family? Even if it is a legal justice is the death penalty right?
When first listening to the discussion I had no idea how Sister Helen Prejean was so connected to Patrick Sonnier. I also did not know what Sonniers crime was.
As Sister Helen Prejean talked more I learned that Sonnier and his brother, Eddie James Sonnier, ran into Loretta Ann Bourque and David LeBlanc at lovers’ lane. The brothers had guns with them when they approached Bourque and LeBlanc, they pretend to be Police Officers to obtain the twos identities. Patrick said that the two were trespassing and if Bourque had sex with Eddie then he would not tell on the two. Boruque refused and in the end the brothers killed both Bourque and LeBlanc.
At this time I started to feel so uncomfortable. My emotions were starting to get to me and to continue to listen to the discussion was very difficult.