Monday, June 29, 2009

Society Honoring Gun Saint Commends Catholic Sportsmen's Organization on 10th Anniversary Sporting Clays Classic

Gun Saint. Photo: Christian Newswire

Society Honoring Gun Saint Commends Catholic Sportsmen's Organization on 10th Anniversary Sporting Clays Classic

ARLINGTON, VA, June 27 /Christian Newswire/ -- The St. Gabriel Possenti Society, Inc. ( commends the Catholic Sportsmen's Organization (CSO) on its successful 10th Anniversary annual Father's Day Sporting Clays Classic, Society Chairman John M. Snyder stated today.

"We take our hats off to co-founders John Aquilino and Chris Carroll. For a decade now, these two gentlemen have worked successfully to put together this annual sport shooting charity competition the Saturday before Father's Day. It's held each year at the Prince George's County, Maryland Trap and Skeet Center."

About 80 shooters participated in a number of events at the tournament. The Society contributed St. Gabriel Possenti medallions included on plagues awarded 10 winners. Over the years, according to Aquilino, CSO "has raised nearly $90,000 for local youth athletic, educational, and arts activities, including scouts." This year, the Knights of Columbus of St. Jerome's Parish, Hyattsville, Maryland cooperated in preparation of the event. Aquilino is active in Knights Council 5564.

Snyder said that, "as we approach the Fourth of July, it's significant to note that Chris and his six brothers and seven sisters are direct descendants of Charles Carroll of Carrollton, one of the signers of our Declaration of Independence in 1776. Chris' leadership highlights the very real connection between shooting skills and the independence we celebrate this coming weekend. After all, it is because of early Americans' shooting skills that we are able to celebrate our independence."

St. Gabriel Possenti was a mid-19th century Catholic seminarian who was proficient in the use of shotguns, rifles and handguns. He used handguns in 1860 to rescue villagers of Isola del Gran Sasso, Italy from a gang of marauders. He died of consumption two years later. In 1920, Pope Benedict XV canonized him. The international Society seeks his official Vatican designation as Patron of Handgunners. Interdenominational in scope, it emphasizes the historical, philosophical and theological bases for the right of self-defense. (

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