The Office of the Chaplain United States House of Representatives

Reverend Thomas Johns

St. John Vianney Parish
Mentor, OH

Sponsor: Rep. Steven LaTourette, (R-OH)
Date of Prayer: 09/28/2005

One Minute Speech Given in Recognition of the Guest Chaplain:

Mr. LaTOURETTE. Mr. Speaker, it is my pleasure to welcome this morning Father Tom Johns of St. John Vianney Catholic Church in Mentor, OH, as the guest chaplain today. I am honored to have Father Johns here today.

I want to welcome him, his sister and brother–in–law, Trish and Denny, and their two children, Kyle and Kayla, to the House of Representatives.

Father Johns has been with St. John Vianney since 1993 and became pastor in January of 1998. He is a treasured member of our community, and he also has a special Washington connection. Several years ago, Father Johns presided over the wedding of Kirsti Talikka Garlock, counsel for the House Committee on International Relations, and her husband, Vince. I know it is a thrill for them to have Father Johns here this morning as the guest chaplain.

I first met Father Johns at the home of Jim and Ruthie Jackson a number of years ago, and they referred to him as Father Tom. Even though I am a Methodist and he is a Roman Catholic, I have to tell you that it is probably a good duty when you are marrying somebody like Kirsti and Vince. I have also had the sad occasion of being with him when he was the presiding official at the funeral of not only Jim Jackson but also Mike Brown. And Father Johns's ability to help friends and family get through those occasions really makes him a special person in my mind. It is a pleasure to have Father Thomas Johns with us today, and I thank him for being here.

Opening Prayer Given by the Guest Chaplain:

Gracious God, we are mindful of the blessings you bestow upon our nation. Thank you for the farmers who provide food for our tables. Help us to be grateful for all we receive, and may we share our gifts with the poor.

Bless the men and women of Congress, and grant them wisdom and fortitude so that they know what is right and good, and pursue it diligently. Guide them to make good decisions, and may our actions as a nation be pleasing in your sight. Touch the hearts of our citizens, especially our young people, and inspire them to live lives of service.

Be with our brothers and sisters in the Gulf States as they rebuild their lives and communities. Please also bless the men and women in the military and keep them out of harm's way. May your peace reign in our hearts, homes, neighborhoods, nation and world. Amen.

To learn more about Members who have sponsored a Guest Chaplain, please visit the Congressional Biographical Directory