Fr. Mc Manus, Reps. Gilman and Wolff:Together again on Capitol Hill

Posted By: June 16, 2011

Fr. Mc Manus, Congressman Lester Wolffe and the Great Ben Gilman
Gilman introduces H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III ( yellow robes) to Fr. Mc Manus ( back to camera)
Congressman Ben Gilman, Georgia Gilman, B.J. Flaherty and Fr. Mc Manus

For many years, Fr. Sean Mc Manus, President of the Capitol Hill-based Irish National Caucus, visited Congressman Ben Gilman (R-NY) who was in office from January 1973 – January 2003. And on June 14th, the two old Capitol Hill friends were together again.
June 15, 2011

The Fermanagh-born priest said “ a prayer for ’’ for the former Chairman of the House International Relations Committee.

“The easiest task imaginable – praying for the Great Ben Gilman,’’ said Fr. Mc Manus.” Because in the entire history of the US Congress no body has a better record
in fighting for Irish justice. Without Ben, I could never have gotten Congress to pass the the Mac Bride Principles. This Jewish-American is my Irish hero. He will never be forgotten in Irish history. Irish-American owe this wonderful, special man
an everlasting debt of gratitude”.
Congressman Gilman was given the Evangelical World Peace Prize award. He requested Fr. Mc Manus to give both the opening and closing prayer. The event was held in the
Gold Room of the Rayburn House Office Building (one of the Congressional buildings on Capitol Hill).

“What made the occasion extra special for me,” explained Fr. Mc Manus, is that the Chairman of the event was Chief Judge of the World Peace Prize, former Congressman Lester Wolff (D-NY) – 1965 – 1973. Lester, like Ben, is a champion of
Irish justice. In early 1972 disguised himself, assumed an Irish identity and brogue, and succeeded in penetrating security at Long Kesh, to get first-hand view of the flagrant injustice of that British internment camp in Northern Ireland”.

The other recipient of the World Peace Prize was H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III (“the leader of all Buddhists and the highest and greatest Buddha in the dharma realm”).
Buddhists believe him to be “the incarnated Buddha … the primordial and highest Buddha according to the lineage charts of all Buddhist sects”).

Fr. Mc Manus added: “It was a beautiful, spiritual and ecumenical event: Jews, Christians, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Protestants and Catholics , all celebrating
their common humanity, religious faith and desire for peace, which the fruit of justice”.

When Congressman Gilman spoke, he singled out Fr. Mc Manus for special praise, mentioning his 12-day Hunger Strike outside the British Embassy in April-May, 1981.
And he also urged everyone to, “read Fr. Mc Manus’ wonderful new book” – My American Struggle for Justice in Northern Ireland, which will have its New York launch on
Thursday, June 23 (O’ Lunney’s Pub, Times Square. 7 PM; and its Chicago launch on Saturday, July 9 and Sunday, July 10 at the Irish American Heritage Center Irish Fest.

The book is for sale at — the only place one can order signed, personalized copies.