A Saint on Death Row
On October 26, 2004, Dominique Green, thirty, was executed by lethal injection in Huntsville, Texas. Arrested at the age of eighteen in the fatal shooting of a man during a robbery outside a Houston convenience store, Green may have taken part in the robbery but always insisted that he did not pull the trigger. The jury, which had no African Americans on it, sentenced him to death. Despite obvious errors in the legal procedures and the protests of the victim’s family, he spent the last twelve years of his life on Death Row.
When Cahill found himself in Texas in December 2003, he visited Dominique at the request of Judge Sheila Murphy, who was working on the appeal of the case. In Dominique, he encountered a level of goodness, peace, and enlightenment that few human beings ever attain. Cahill joined the fierce fight for Dominique’s life, even enlisting Dominique’s hero, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, to make an historic visit to Dominique and to plead publicly for mercy. Cahill was so profoundly moved by Dominique’s extraordinary life that he was compelled to tell the tragic story of his unjust death at the hands of the state.
A Saint on Death Row will introduce you to a young man whose history, innate goodness, and final days you will never forget. It also shines a necessary light on America’s racist and deeply flawed legal system. A Saint on Death Row is an absorbing, sobering, and deeply spiritual story that illuminates the moral imperatives too often ignored in the headlong quest for justice.
“A tremendously moving book—all the more effective because of the tempered voice with which Cahill narrates an unspeakable injustice. Dominique Green’s personal and moral triumph, prior to his execution under the benighted legal processes of Texas, is portrayed with so much sensitivity, and the racial factor that Cahill emphasizes is conveyed so forcefully, that I expect A Saint on Death Row to become a classic in the growing struggle to cleanse this nation finally of the sin of the death penalty.”
“Dominique Green was a wonderful man whose life demonstrated the power of God to heal and transfigure even the most unlikely people and places. Who could have expected that Texas Death Row would be made into an avenue of divine grace?—which is exactly what happened through Dominique’s instrumentation. Though this is a book that ends in death, it does not end in despair. Read it and discover how even the obscenity of capital punishment can be transformed into an occasion of light and peace.”
—Desmond Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus of Cape Town, South Africa
“There are many ways to tell the tragic story of America’s death rows. Tom Cahill has chosen to show—through the extraordinary life of one man—that God is always working everywhere and can bring the most beautiful soul to maturity in even the most horrifying circumstances. If you read his story, you will never forget Dominique Green, nor will you ever feel the same way about our courts, our prisons, and our criminal justice system. This book is a life-changer.”
—Sister Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man Walking
“This is a deeply moving narrative about a man transformed as he faced an unjust execution.”
—James H. Cone, author of Black Theology and Black Power and Martin & Malcolm & America: A Dream or a Nightmare