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Read our Summer 2018 Newsletter below!

S/W formation household 1985–1986 (Luis Fernando Aragon front row, first from right)

Over the past 50 years, more than 500 men became affiliates of the Brotherhood before discerning that God was calling them to a different life. How did their time with us impact them? And what were some of the most valuable lessons they learned while sharing our life? These and other questions where at the heart of 13 interviews which we conducted over the past three months with men from Asia, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and North America.

Some of these men are still active in the communities of the Sword of the Spirit, the wider movement that Servants of the Word are also a part of. Some have become full-time ministers in their church. But all are still actively serving the Lord. Their ages range from 30 to 65, thus encompassing most our history as a brotherhood. Here is a short description of a selection of them:

Andy Jordan (AJo), 30 years old, married with one boy and one child on the way. Youthworker in Glasgow, Scotland.

Andy Juan (AJu), 55, married with 4 children. Manager in a large, multinational corporation, currently self-employed and also senior coordinator of the Ligaya ng Panginoon community in Manila, Philippines.

Brett Lockhart (BL), 59, married with 4 boys, barrister and Queen’s Council in Northern Ireland.

Corey Mantel (CM), 59, married with five children, computer engineer, living in Chelsea, Michigan, USA.

Fr. Dan Jones (DJ), 64, Catholic priest, Associate professor at the Sacred Heart Seminary and Pastor of Our Lady of the Rosary, both in Detroit, USA.

Dave Wittgens (DW), 44, married with 5 children, practices general medicine in Detroit, USA.

Don Escarro (DE), 58, married with 5 children, engineer and consultant in the power-plant business in Manila, Philippines

Leo Banog (LB), 49, married with three children, IT consultant based in Manila.

Luis Fernando Aragon (LA), 59, married with two children, professor at the School of Physical Education and Sports Sciences and director of the “Human Movement Science Center” at the University of Costa Rica.

Luis Brenes (LB), 51, married with four children, agronomist and organic agriculture consultant in Costa Rica and senior coordinator of the community “Arbol de Vida” in San Jose, Costa Rica.

Peter Mackenzie (PM), 53, married with two daughters, Anglican minister and currently vicar of St. John & St. James in West London, UK.

Salim Baz (SB), 32, Lebanese, married with two young children, currently working on a PhD in Finance at Imperial College-London.

We are grateful to the Lord that our common life, as imperfect as it has been at times, and our ideal had a good effect on these men who discerned that the brotherhood was not their calling. We hold them and all the other men who journeyed with us for a while, in high esteem for the way they are serving the Lord now.

In interviewing these brothers their observations seemed to fall into seven categories. Click on the following links to read more about each takeaway:

  1. Radical Dedication
  2. The Brotherhood as a Band of Brothers
  3. Prayer is at the Heart of Brotherhood Life
  4. The Word Stands out in the “Servants of the Word”
  5. The Maturity and Character of the Brothers Attracted Them
  6. Formation in Character and Skills Has Given Shape to Their Lives
  7. Their Careers Have Been Positively Impacted by Their Time with the Brothers
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