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Let It In with Guy Lawrence

Aug 2, 2021

#180 This conversation is a heavy, but important one. Sunny Jacobs was sentenced to death for a crime she did not commit, and after spending 17 years in prison, was released in 1992. Sunny’s inner strength is absolutely amazing, and her story is definitely something we can all learn something from. During our conversation today, we talk a lot about healing, forgiveness, the importance of hope, and the journey towards self-acceptance.

If you are in a situation where you think there is no end in sight, then I cannot recommend this episode enough.

“I had a choice to believe either in hope or hopelessness. And so, I chose to believe in hope rather than hopelessness. That one instant changed everything for me.”

About Sunny: The Sunny Center Foundation is a non-profit organization that helps people who have suffered the injustice of wrongful conviction, giving them support after they have been exonerated and released from prison.

It was established by Sunny Jacobs and Peter Pringle, both of whom were sentenced to death for crimes they did not commit. Sunny was released in 1992 after spending 17 years incarcerated in Florida, and Peter in Ireland in 1995 after 15 years in prison.

They met in 1998, fell in love, got married and became part of each other’s path to healing and happiness, using the practices of yoga, meditation and prayer – the same methods that each of them had used in prison to help them survive their ordeal.

In 2012 they began welcoming exonerees into their home. In 2014, the foundation was established and they were able to extend their assistance more broadly, using a unique holistic approach encompassing physical, mental and spiritual healing and ongoing support. 

In 2018 they opened The Sunny Living Center, a housing complex in Tampa, Florida for exonerees.

In 2020, their mission expanded to helping families and others who’ve been affected by the injustice of wrongful conviction as well as extending their healing techniques to the general public.

Sunny's Website:

Sunny and Peter’s Books:

Key points with time stamp:

  • A Journey of Healing & Forgiveness Back to The Heart (00:00)
  • Who is Sunny Jacobs? (01:26)
  • Reactions to Sunny’s work (02:01)
  • On the wrong conviction (04:46)
  • The story of the arrests, trials, and 5 years of isolation (08:53)
  • Living in a purgatory (21:36)
  • Accepting a death sentence? (23:30)
  • Believing to have hope (27:15)
  • Becoming the best person she could be (28:42)
  • Healing and forgiveness as keys to life (33:55)
  • Does acceptance of a situation mean giving up hope for change? (36:33)
  • When did the situation start to change for Sunny? (42:36)
  • The importance of facing your anger and healing (46:14)
  • The role of communication and self-expression in healing (50:24)
  • Sunny and her children (53:09)
  • Assimilating back to life outside of prison (58:28)
  • Was anyone held accountable for what happened to Sunny and her family? (01:02:47)
  • Making sense of your journey (01:06:34)
  • “Surround yourself with positive people.” (01:10:49)

Mentioned in this episode:

  • Don Wood
  • Bruce Lipton
  • Stolen Time, Sunny’s book
  • Swami

About me:

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