St. Gabriel Possenti Society promotes the public recognition
of St. Gabriel Possenti, including his Vatican designation
as Patron Saint of Handgunners.
Gabriel Possenti was a Catholic seminarian whose marksmanship
and proficiency with handguns single-handedly saved the village
of Isola, Italy from a band of 20 terrorists in 1860.
Possenti Society offers a variety of materials related to
St. Gabriel Possenti and a biblical understanding of self-defense.
Savior of Isola
1860, a band of soldiers from the army of Garibaldi entered
the mountain village of Isola, Italy. They began to burn and
pillage the town, terrorizing its inhabitants.
with his seminary rector's permission, walked into the center
of town, unarmed, to face the terrorists. One of the soldiers
was dragging off a young woman he intended to rape when he
saw Possenti and made a snickering remark about such a young
monk being all alone.
quickly grabbed the soldier's revolver from his belt and ordered
the marauder to release the woman. The startled soldier complied,
as Possenti grabbed the revolver of another soldier who came
by. Hearing the commotion, the rest of the soldiers came running
in Possenti's direction, determined to overcome the rebellious
that moment a small lizard ran across the road between Possenti
and the soldiers. When the lizard briefly paused, Possenti
took careful aim and struck the lizard with one shot. Turning
his two handguns on the approaching soldiers, Possenti commanded
them to drop their weapons. Having seen his handiwork with
a pistol, the soldiers complied. Possenti ordered them to
put out the fires they had set, and upon finishing, marched
the whole lot out of town, ordering them never to return.
The grateful townspeople escorted Possenti in triumphant procession
back to the seminary, thereafter referring to him as "the
Savior of Isola".