Due to the success of the St. Joan of Arc’s 2016 “Into the Breach” Retreat, the men of the retreat planning team, along with Fr. Kline, desired to capitalize on the fruits of prayer and fellowship. The first order of business was to establish a team of men to make decisions regarding the development of this apostolate. The team consisted of twelve men who gathered on a regular basis to discuss the apostolate. The team began by defining the basic structure and function of the “St. Joan of Arc (SJA) Men’s Initiative” (the name of the apostolate at the time). The team generated and completed a questionnaire in order to assess valued ideas regarding the SJA Men’s Initiative They discussed all thoughts drafted on these completed questionnaires. Based on these valued inputs, the team finalized a basic charter of operation. One of the first items voted on by the team was to change the name from the “SJA Men’s Initiative,” to “Esto Vir,” which is Latin for “Be a man”.
Esto Vir is a call for the men of St. Joan of Arc parish to become saints. This is a universal call to serve, to unite and build up other men to become intentional disciples. It can be as dramatic as St. Paul getting knocked off his horse or as unseen as a quiet resolve during a sleepy Sunday morning Mass. However we arrive at it, that resolve to follow Jesus consciously and intentionally with our whole heart, soul, mind and strength is what the whole of the Christian call to discipleship is all about. As St. Paul says, we are called to “destroy arguments and every pretension raising itself against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive in obedience to Christ” (2 Cor 10:5). This call to discipleship is grounded and lived out in our vocation, whether married or celibate. Once made, that decision will henceforth be the controlling decision that will drive and coordinate everything — absolutely everything — in the life of the disciple of Jesus Christ. Here begins the “New Life” as St. Paul describes, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has passed away, behold, the new has come” (2 Cor 5:17).
With the impetus of Bishop Olmsted’s Exhortation Into the Breach, our overall purpose is to become followers of Christ in and through our vocation. The men of Esto Vir have formed small groups that are called “platoons.” Each platoon has been designated a specific day of the week (except Sunday) to be “on watch,” meaning that on those days the men pray and fast for a specific “breach” assigned to them. Each platoon will also meet on a regular basis to encourage each other, challenge each other to grow in holiness, and to call forth to mission each member according to his vocation. In order to achieve the fruit needed to become saints, routine meetings need to take place in every platoon. These meetings should act as rich soil, where each man’s formation has the opportunity to grow and flourish.
Esto Vir is about leading men to become saints. In light of this, the basic structure includes three areas of formation: the human, the spiritual, and the intellectual. Each area, while distinct in itself, is naturally linked to the others. The three areas form the comprehensive structure of formation that could serve as pillars for Esto Vir.
- Human Formation
- Spiritual Formation
- Intellectual Formation
Esto Vir Corps Team
Spiritual Director – Fr. Don Kline
- Spiritual Director – Dcn. Peter Auriemma
- Provides guidance in all things spiritual; including direction, sacraments, education, etc.
- Captain – Will Wisehart
- Oversees all aspects of Esto Vir, runs the meetings, communicates to all platoon leaders and is generally the face of the apostolate.
- Chief – Jake Tawney
- Keep minutes at meetings, treasurer and contributes to logistics
- Platoon Leaders – Andy Lambros, Brian Hanson, Ivan Garcia, Gustavo Estrella, Joe Ozog and Chris Tabanico.
- A part of the Esto Vir Corps Team, leads and communicates with their own platoon.
- Staff Liaison – Andy Lambros, Brian Hanson
- Helps communicate with parish, schedules rooms, some logistics, etc.
- Team Members – Steve Perez, Doug Connelly
- Assists with marketing, registrations, platoon support, etc.