Saint Society Names Catholic United States Senator Man of
the Year in Washington, D.C.
WASHINGTON, March 6, 2012 /Christian Newswire/
-- Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE), left, received a special St.
Gabriel Possenti Society award here from John M. Snyder, Society
The Society named Sen. Johanns, a practicing
Catholic, Man of the Year for his support of the right to
Photo by Ling Woo.
February 27, Snyder presented the plaque to Sen. Johanns during
a ceremony on the 150th anniversary Feast Day of St. Gabriel
Possenti. Snyder also presented Sen. Johanns with a boxed
medallion featuring a profile of St. Gabriel Possenti custom
designed for the Society in Rome, Italy.
Sen. Johanns' wife Stephanie accompanied
her husband to the banquet.
Prior to the banquet, a group of St. Gabriel
Possenti devotees attended Mass at St. Matthew's Cathedral.
A former governor of the Cornhusker State
and a former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture, Johanns was elected
to the U.S. Senate from Nebraska in 2008 and took office in
2009. He serves on five Senate committees: Agriculture, Nutrition
and Forestry; Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs; Environment
and Public Works; Indian Affairs; and Veterans' Affairs.
Snyder said, "Sen. Johanns exemplifies
the principles held in such high regard by the St. Gabriel
Possenti Society, Inc. The interdenominational, international
Society emphasizes the historical, philosophical and theological
bases for the right of self-defense."
The Society's patron, St. Gabriel Possenti,
a seminarian, rescued villagers of Isola del Gran Sasso, Italy
in 1860 from renegade marauders. By shooting a lizard running
across the road, he demonstrated his handgun marksmanship
to the terrorists and marched them out of town. He did this
without causing physical harm to a single human being.
A detailed account of the lizard incident
comprises a chapter on "The Savior of Isola" in
"Son of the Passion," a biography of St. Gabriel
Possenti by Possenti's fellow Passionist, the late Rev. Godfrey
Poage, C.P., published in 1962 in Milwaukee by Bruce Publishing
Company. Snyder recounts it in his book, "Gun Saint,"
published in 2003 in Arlington, Virginia by Telum Associates,
St. Gabriel Possenti was canonized
by Pope Benedict XV in 1920. The Society (www.gunsaint.com)
seeks his Vatican designation as Patron of Handgunners.