In a true showing of how the International Symposium of Young Lasallians is already having an impact on Lasallians back home, Maggie Naughton, campus minister and coach at La Salle Academy in Providence, RI, shared this reflection she used as morning prayer at her school Tuesday, February 11.
Do you have a message you want to share with the ISYL delegates? Write your message in the comments section of this post.
Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God.
I have been glued to my Facebook and Twitter feeds for the last few days waiting for updates from my friends and colleagues who are attending the 3rd International Symposium of Young Lasallians, a gathering for Lasallians who are ages 16-35 in Rome during this week. To my delight, yesterday two of my close friends, Michelle, who works in San Francisco at De Marillac Academy, a San Miguel school as the director of student and family services, and Sarah, who is the 6th grade teacher at San Miguel Providence, posed for a picture with Brother Álvaro, our superior general, popped up on Facebook.
I met Michelle and Sarah at a Regional formational gathering for Young Lasallians in Memphis in 2010, which seems like yesterday and a really long time ago at the same time. We were there for a week-long program of study and prayer. I learned so much about our Founder, notable brothers like San Miguel and Brother James Miller, and a little bit about Lasallian Spirituality. Having never really experienced anything other than La Salle Academy Providence, I really didn’t totally understand the concept of the wider Lasallian world.
By the end of the week, the concept of “Together and By Association” was tattooed on my brain. We are different but we operate under the same charism, the same love for our Founder, our love for Jesus Christ and most of all, our love for the poor. To me, association came alive as I watched Brothers and Partners sitting around the table sharing and laughing with each other. It was such a gift to listen to the stories of my colleagues during the week. I was humbled by the work that is done by them every day that is both similar and very different from my own work at La Salle Academy. Despite our different ministries, locations in the Region, and how we came to be Lasallians, our goal is the same: the salvation of souls.
For many of you, your only experience of Lasallian is La Salle Academy. And La Salle is awesome. But if you’ve travelled to the Lasallian Youth Summer Assembly, gone on a service trip to Montana to our school on the Blackfeet Reservation, met up with the kids from Yakima down at St. Paul’s outside of New Orleans, done the homeless sleep out with kids from Saints, or if you are in the San Miguel Association group, you know what I’m talking about. You know how interesting it is to compare schools and rituals, and how different we all are. But we all know how similar we are, and the best part is we all come together to say the same prayers together which unites us. The Symposium participants have come together to plan the future for young people like us, and the future is bright. They will provide guidance on how we will be able to foster the Lasallian mission and how our gifts and talents can best serve the world. What an awesome opportunity! The greatest gift we have to give is our ability to evangelize each other. You are my greatest teachers, and I hope that you recognize that quality in each other. And I hope that someday, you have the pleasure of seeing two of your Lasallian best friends mugging for the camera with the Superior General!
Let us pray
Lord, we ask your blessings on all of the ISYL delegates as they travel, gather, and work together in Rome, that they may: live their vocation in reference to the charism of Saint John Baptist de La Salle and his values; that their faith be one that discovers God in everyday reality in the light of Scripture and, for persons of other religions, according to their own sacred texts; that they honor a community experience lived in diverse ways and according to the identity of each one; that they commit to the educational service of the poor and that they approach the symposium with a universal openness which transcends the person and the local reality.
St. John Baptist de La Salle, Pray for Us
Our Lady Queen of Peace, Pray for Us
Live Jesus in Our Hearts Forever