Annual men’s conference is March 10 in Appleton

By | March 7, 2012

Fr. Richards is one of a number of speakers at the all-day event being held at St. Pius X Church in Appleton. Other presenters include former U.S. ambassador to the United Nations and two-time candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, Dr. Alan Keyes. He will give two talks focusing on the theme of reclaiming our nation’s moral principles.


Fr. Francis (Rocky) Hoffman, executive director of the Catholic radio network, Relevant Radio, will serve as the day’s master of ceremonies. He said that his opening address will confront men to work like St. Paul in their day-to-day lives. His hope is that the event will wake men up and give them a renewed spirit.

According to the group’s mission statement, Esto Vir, which is a Latin phrase meaning “be a man,” looks to challenge men to live extraordinary faith and leadership in everyday life. This is accomplished through regular fellowship opportunities, prayer activities and parish-based men’s groups.

John Cavil, who serves as one of the group’s core team members, said that the annual conference usually draws around 800 men. “Given the attacks that our culture throws at families these days, we are focused on strengthening fathers and husbands as leaders of the domestic church,” Cavil told The Compass. “Family life is the very foundation of a healthy society.”

Fellow core team member Pat Beno added that the attacks on the family and society have become very evident in recent days due to the government’s Health and Human Services mandate, which would order almost every employer and insurer in the country to provide sterilization and contraceptives, as well as abortion-inducing drugs, in their health plans. He noted that Esto Vir has come out publicly in support of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ rejection of this plan.

With this in mind, Fr. Richards said that there is no time to waste. Men need to step up to the plate and take action.

“Men need a challenge,” he said, “and they need support amongst themselves to be true men of God.”

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