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The first stage of Jesuit formation, the novitiate is a two-year experience of prayer, community living, and apostolic service as men start their journey in the Society of Jesus.

Jesuits West novices serving at the Los Angeles Regional Food Bank

MacLean Andrews, nSJ

Murrieta, California

MacLean, 32, graduated from Gonzaga Preparatory School in Spokane and earned a bachelor’s in international studies from Point Loma Nazarene University. He taught history and was a speech and debate coach at Gonzaga Prep, which is where his discernment process with the Jesuits began. In 2019, he took a pilgrimage in China following the route of Matteo Ricci, SJ, from Macau to Beijing; it was on this trip that he decided to apply to the Society of Jesus. MacLean likes reading, watching football and writing.

Jonathan Choe, nSJ

Seal Beach, California

Jonathan, 24, graduated from Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose, California. He has a bachelor’s in philosophy and humanities for teaching from Seattle University and a master’s in educational studies from Loyola Marymount University. At Seattle U, he attended retreats, sang in the choir and became passionate about Jesuit education. He spent two years as a high school math teacher in Phoenix and spent a summer teaching at the Jesuit high school in Lusaka, Zambia. Jonathan enjoys golfing, hiking, cooking and reading.

Anthony Del Castillo, nSJ

Upland, California

Tony, 43, has a bachelor’s in music from the University of Southern California and a master’s in commercial music from California State University. He also attended the Southern California Conservatory of Music where he learned how to read Braille music, play piano and use adaptive music technology. He is a professional musician and has played the drums for more than 30 years. He taught music, including percussion, piano, Braille music and vocal techniques. Tony likes watching movies and reading, especially science fiction.

Kevin Miller, nSJ 

Burbank, California

Kevin, 28, has a bachelor’s in psychology from UCLA. He was a retreat coordinator for the Jesuit Restorative Justice Initiative in Los Angeles. As a Jesuit volunteer, he served as a campus minister at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School Twin Cities in Minneapolis and as a case manager at Catholic Charities in San Jose, California. He spent five months living in community with Jesuits and volunteering at the Kino Border Initiative at the U.S.-Mexico border. He enjoys basketball, weightlifting and reading spiritual books.

Alvaro Pacheco, Jr., nSJ

Los Angeles, California

Alvaro, 38, has a bachelor’s in history and Spanish from the University of California, Berkeley. He worked as a Spanish-language press secretary for former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and as deputy press secretary for former Congressman Xavier Becerra. He was co-coordinator of the Fifth National Encuentro of Hispanic/Latino Ministry for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles and volunteered as an interpreter for pro bono immigration attorneys. Alvaro’s hobbies include practicing guitar, taking walks and watching sports, especially the Lakers and Dodgers.

Paul Prevou, nSJ

Arlington, Texas

Paul, 30, graduated from Whitman College with a bachelor’s in geology in 2015. He then worked as an environmental consultant on nuclear and petroleum cleanup efforts in Washington state. His experiences in young adult ministry in his home diocese of Fort Worth, along with those of fraternity life in college, inspired a love of service and communal living. His grandfather taught at Gonzaga University and planted the seeds of his interest in the Society of Jesus. Paul’s hobbies include weightlifting, backpacking and studying Mandarin Chinese.

Pierre Vu Thompson, nSJ

Richmond, California

Pierre, 32, earned a bachelor’s in foreign service at Georgetown University and a master’s in peace studies at Uppsala University in Sweden. The Jesuits taught him a way of listening to God and walking with his people. Over the past decade, he has organized and advocated for community development, immigration services and integral disarmament. A Rotarian, he is drawn to diverse peoples, cultures and languages in the spirit of fraternity. Pierre enjoys both movement and stillness. 

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