Man Week celebrates masculinity, increases brotherhood on campus


On Monday Feb. 3rd, a series of male-oriented events known as Man Week kicked off in order to promote wholesome masculinity and brotherhood. The first event, at Junípero Serra Hall, was titled “Bourbon, Beards, and Brotherhood.” 

In the hall’s parking lot, men gathered to demolish a car against the background of rock music while feasting on a seemingly endless supply of tacos. The Rev. Matthew Russick, TOR, was among the first to drive a sledgehammer into the car. 

After the car had been destroyed, a series of talks ensued. First, Matthew Schaefer, director of student development, gave an enthusiastic presentation on bourbon, covering the basics on how it is made and how to properly taste it. Next, Bob Lesnefsky talked about beards, the way they can positively impact a man’s look and a few tips on how to grow them. Finally, Claudio Ferrari shared stories about brotherhood, adventures with friends and guidelines for maintaining strong fraternal bonds. 

After the talk, men age 21 and over participated in a bourbon tasting session. 

The second event, Tuesday night in the Gentile Gallery, was a talk open to both genders on dating at Franciscan. The talk was led by Bob Lesnefsky and his wife Kate; they discussed certain aspects of dating culture in need of improvement on campus. 

The Lesnefskys advised students to take initiative and pursue the other person “as a whole.” A constructive question and answer session followed the talk. 

The third event, entitled “Holy Smokes,” took place Wednesday night in the Fireside Lounge. A line of men eager to eat wings and smoke a free cigar stretched from the lounge to the top of the stairs over the Gentile Gallery. 

After the men had their fill of wings, everyone went outside, gathered around a fire and started to smoke their cigars. Despite the rain, attendees listened to the Rev. Matthew Russick give a talk on how the gathering of men in community is best when it is centered around Christ and the mission he gave to spread the Gospel. 

The final event, titled the “Man Event” was on Saturday. Activities included free haircuts and nachos, trivia, Eucharistic adoration and axe throwing. The night also featured a talk by Kris Frank of Vagabond Missions regarding masculine identity. 

Reflecting on the week, freshman James Duarte said, “The talks really brought (us men) together. … The manly time was very soothing.”

Furthermore, graduate student Grady Stuckman said, “The talk (by Kris Frank) was very good. I’m glad it wasn’t just another purity talk. …  It was about what an authentic man is.”