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ON FAITH & MEDIA View Comments

Pierrepoint: The Last Hangman

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Source: Catholic News Service

Well-made British film argues against capital punishment by telling the true story of one of England's most prolific executioners, Albert I. Pierrepoint, staunchly portrayed by talented character actor Timothy Spall. Director Adrian Shergold generally avoids sensationalism when depicting Pierrepoint's grim stock in trade, but the morally correct treatment becomes somewhat heavy-handed when the narrative takes an unbelievable turn that solidifies Pierrepoint's growing disillusionment with his duties. Numerous nongraphic hangings, a mostly clothed adulterous encounter, full frontal female and rear male nudity involving corpses, a few instances of crass language. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is A-III -- adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is R -- restricted. Under 17 requires accompanying parent or adult guardian.

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Giles Mary of St. Joseph: In the same year that a power-hungry Napoleon Bonaparte led his army into Russia, Giles Mary of St. Joseph ended a life of humble service to his Franciscan community and to the citizens of Naples. 
<p>Francesco was born in Taranto to very poor parents. His father’s death left the 18-year-old Francesco to care for the family. Having secured their future, he entered the Friars Minor at Galatone in 1754. For 53 years he served at St. Paschal’s Hospice in Naples in various roles, such as cook, porter or most often as official beggar for that community. </p><p>“Love God, love God” was his characteristic phrase as he gathered food for the friars and shared some of his bounty with the poor—all the while consoling the troubled and urging everyone to repent. The charity which he reflected on the streets of Naples was born in prayer and nurtured in the common life of the friars. The people whom Giles met on his begging rounds nicknamed him the “Consoler of Naples.” He was canonized in 1996.</p> American Catholic Blog Jesus, our crucified Lord, you know us better than we know ourselves. Help us to see the ways in which we not only act out in selfishness, greed, or shortsightedness, but also in those ways we choose to ignore, forget, and step over aspects of our lives and others for which we need 
forgiveness.

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