Who we are and What we do
The Order of Lepanto is an apostolate dedicated to outreach to Catholic men through a unique combination of martial arts and faith. Our group seeks to tap the masculine spirit that God has endowed men with, giving them a masculine activity to engage in together – learning the fighting styles of the Knights of the Medieval and Renaissance time periods. In much the same way as Asian martial arts tend to dovetail well into Eastern spirituality, these skills (Western Martial Arts or WMA) were honed by people who were committed Catholic or Christian men, which caused this fighting style to fit well with Catholic theology and practice.
Real World Skills from Real World History
Our modern culture holds many misconceptions about history, especially Catholic history:
|True Martial Arts are Asian||The term Martial Arts is actually a European name for any system of combat|
|The Crusades were an offensive war mainly about conquest||In the 7th century the vast majority of the middle east was Catholic. During the next several hundred years, Muslims attacked and drove out Christians. The Crusades were fought as a defensive war to reverse this.|
|Europeans fought with brute force and ungainly weapons||Medieval Europeans developed well-thought out styles of martial arts|
|Catholics worships Mary, saints, etc.||Although Catholics do pray to Mary and the saints, the word “pray” means to simply to ask. The Bible says that we can ask our departed brothers and sisters to pray for us just like we can ask others around us for prayers.|
|Martial arts were invented by Shoalin monks and Samurai||Distinct European styles were illustrated, documented, and can be studied today|
In the past couple of decades our knowledge of the historical manuals that Renaissance Europeans left behind have greatly expanded. What these studies show is a well documented martial arts tradition based on careful analysis, timeless principles, moral underpinnings, and deadly purpose.
As early as 1295, fighting men began producing written and illustrated manuals to instruct students in the arts of combat. Some of these manuals have been made available to the public by the Association for Renaissance Martial Arts (ARMA) who excel at scholarship and recreation of missing knowledge from a purely physical aspect. By the 15th and 16th centuries, professional schools were becoming common with advanced curricula covering a wide variety of weapons and unarmed fighting, along with moral instruction to discourage students from becoming thugs and criminals
Engage Your Body, Mind, and Soul
The Order of Lepanto is based on a belief that that the original practitioners of this art were not only physical in their approach, but held a deep Catholic faith that guided them in every aspect of their lives. This understanding has influenced the development of our methodology and curriculum. On one track, we study and practice the martial skills of late Medieval and Renaissance Catholic Knights with the goals of encouraging and strengthening the fighting spirit in modern Catholic men, giving them physical skills which can be translated to spiritual skills, and building a sense of brotherhood and camaraderie. Our second path consists of studying and practicing the spiritual martial arts (spiritual warfare), to equip men for the special God-given role that they have in this world as the spiritual head of a family or as priests, bishops, and religious brothers, etc. As Catholic men need to strive always to be men of faith, prayer and action! There is a real spiritual enemy that seeks to destroy those who have been given to our care. We need to fight for their lives and for their souls. Learning the traditional martial arts of the great Catholic Knights serves to connect us to the spirituality of our ancestors in faith, but it also serves to physically teach the lessons that can be keys to effective spiritual warfare.
If you would like to donate to our apostolate, please click on the Paypal link below: