Death-row experience interweaves lives of priest, man he helped free

Categories: Latest News

February 24, 2016

Former death-row inmate Joe D'Ambrosio poses for a photo at St. Clarence Church in North Olmsted, Ohio, Feb. 11. (CNS photo/William Rieter) See DEATH-ROW-EXONERATE Feb. 22, 2016.

Former death-row inmate Joe D’Ambrosio poses for a photo at St. Clarence Church in North Olmsted, Ohio, Feb. 11. (CNS photo/William Rieter)

NORTH OLMSTED, Ohio (CNS) — When Father Neil Kookoothe first met Joseph D’Ambrosio on Ohio’s death row in December 1998, he intended to describe the funeral of the condemned man’s mother.

D’Ambrosio would not listen, however. Another inmate had told him the priest had been a lawyer before ordination. Now, D’Ambrosio pleaded for help with his case.

“It’s God’s providence,” D’Ambrosio, a lifelong Catholic, said recently of Father Kookoothe’s unexpected entrance into his life.

Read more in The Visitor…