Foreword by Sr. Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man WalkingGripping account of one man's spiritual transformation while in solitary confinement
Clayton Fountain was thought by most to be beyond all hope of redemption. Serving several life sentences for five violent murders (four of them committed while behind bars), he was condemned to live out his days in solitary confinement, entombed in a cell of concrete and steel built specifically for him at the U.S. Penitentiary in Marion, Illinois. Yet even this ruthless murderer was not beyond the limits of divine mercy. Although he never again emerged from his cell, Fountain undertook a profound spiritual journey that led to a genuine religious conversion and his decision to become a hermit and a brother in the Trappist Order. Father W. Paul Jones, who served as Fountain's spiritual advisor for six years until Fountain's sudden death in 2004, tells this amazing story with candor and compassion.
Read a review
of the book from our own Rachel Bomberger and a blog post
from W. Paul Jones on EerdWord.
"Clayton Fountain was regarded as a ruthless killer beyond anyone's power to save. Yet in the stillness of his solitary confinement, entombed alive in a cell of concrete and steel, God was at work redeeming and remaking Clayton Fountain. I am grateful to Father Paul for ministering so compassionately to a man precious only to God and for sharing his remarkable story with the world."
Fr. Mark Scott
— Gethsemani Abbey, Kentucky
"Bernard of Clairvaux in the twelfth century once liberated a murderer being led to execution. 'I will kill him myself,' Bernard promised; he took the man to Clairvaux and made him a monk. Bernard meant that through the process of monastic conversion the man's false self, which had expressed itself in violence, would die and his true self emerge and thrive in peace. W. Paul Jones tells a twentieth-century version of that story. Through Jones's sensitive, gripping prose the reader follows the conversion of Clayton A. Fountain from chaos to clarity."
Sr. Helen Prejean
"No one is beyond the mercy of God. No one. The message of this book is that to kill anyone on the assumption that their redemption is impossible is to take the place of God. (from foreword)"