Magnaye joins lay Marianist community

Jameson Datoc '23, Staff Reporter

htoOn Jan. 7, Leo Magneye ’05 became the fifth Marianist Lay Affiliate within Riordan’s community. 

Marianists are Catholics who dedicate their lives to living out the Marianist Charisms and seeing Mother Mary as a holy example. Magnaye was commissioned to become a lay Marianist in Riordan’s chapel by spiritual director Brother David Betz, SM. 

There are three branches to the Marianist family.  A Marianist can be a brother or priest (Society of Mary), a sister (Daughters of Mary Immaculate), and Marianist Lay people. Being a Marianist school, Riordan lives and breathes Marianist charisma. 

The charisms are: To educate for the formation of faith, to provide an integral quality education, educate in family spirit, educate for service, justice, peace, and the integrity of creation, and to educate for adaptation and change. 

Remembering the past when Riordan was populated with Marianist brothers and priests who taught and lived at the school, math teacher Ottilie Valverde, a Marianist Affiliate, said that her first coworkers at Riordan were Marianist brothers and priests who taught alongside her. 

Campus Ministry Director Alex Datoc ’87, a Marianist Affiliate, said the dorms where the boarding students stay now used to be where the Marianists brothers and priests lived. But that’s old news being that Brother Jalbert, SM was the last Marianist Brother to leave Riordan in 2012. 

Many thought Marianist traditions of Riordan were lost since there are no more Marianist brothers or priests at the school. But in reality, that is not the case because five Riordan staff members became Lay Marianist affiliates to keep the Marianist tradition alive at the school.  

Guided by Brother David Betz, SM, the first Lay Marianist affiliates who took lifetime vows at Riordan was Joey Klobas ’07 and Vittorio Anastasio ’84 in 2017, both have since moved on from the school. Next were Alex and MaryAnn Datoc and Valverde in 2019, then Michael Vezzali-Pascual ’88 in 2021, and finally Magnaye in 2022.

Magnaye started his Marianist journey as a LIFE team member at Riordan when he was in high school and ever since then he felt the Marianist values, charisms, and characteristics of Marianist education slowly become a part of his daily life and who he was. 

Magnaye said, “It’s kinda like the saying in Spiderman: with great power, comes great responsibility. I was given all of this knowledge, spirit and charisma. I have to share it!”

 In turn, this made him the “buddy buddy,” the one that everyone comes to for help, advice, or comfort.

“I had all of this Marianist spirit, and coming to Riordan, I was called back home, called back to give to the community that gave me so much.”

This is easily seen by him being the House of Bolts provincial and his joyful spirit that he spreads throughout the campus. 

“It was a personal mission without guidance, this is what I was called to do” he said “To do whatever he tells you … It’s a calling to give back and inspire younger generations.” 

Some still think Riordan’s lost its touch, but as Magnaye would say, “It’s our focus—no, our mission—to build back the community at Riordan.”