Dear Friends of the Christian Brothers,

After a five-year stint at our Mother House in Rome, I was appointed Visitor of the District of Eastern North America (DENA). The work I am called to do is exciting, fast-paced, and challenging. I continue to receive such kind notes of support and welcome from so many of you. This is a reminder to me that we are all part of God’s mission together—Brothers, partners, and friends—providing a first-class Catholic Lasallian education to a very diverse population in our educational communities and agencies.

The pandemic has upset our lives and has helped us to refocus on the essentials. For Christian educators in general, and Lasallians in particular, the “essential” is described by Saint John Baptist de La Salle in his first Meditation for the Time of Retreat:

God is so good that, having created us, He wills that all of us come to the knowledge of the truth. This truth is God Himself and what He has desired to reveal to us through Jesus Christ, through the holy apostles, and through His Church. This is why God wills all people to be instructed, so that their minds may be enlightened by the light of faith.

The key insight of our Founder is that young people, especially those who are poor, can experience God’s goodness through their relationship with their teachers. Lasallian teachers help those entrusted to their care to fully develop their God-given talents and grow to become women and men of faith who proactively work to create societies that are more compassionate and just. By the light of faith, we invite all members of our educational communities and agencies to recognize Jesus Christ in those who are poor and marginalized and to respond to their needs and ease their anxieties.

This issue of Lasallian Notes highlights the spirit of faith and ardent zeal that inspires and motivates all of us who are engaged in the ministry of human and Christian education in the District of Eastern North America. Thank you for accompanying and supporting us as together we continue to ensure that the young people entrusted to our care “may be enlightened by the light of faith.”

Live Jesus in our hearts. Forever!

Br. Robert Schaefer, FSC