St John Baptist de la Salle

I love getting to know new saints, and as a priest, you have to meet them as you work through the church year–observing the different feasts and memorials.

I had known of St John Baptist de la Salle and the Christian brothers, but didn’t know the details. It seems in every age God raises up a saint to renew Catholic education and open the minds of a new generation to the mysteries of God’s love. St John Baptist de la Salle’s sacrifice of his comfortable church position and his family fortune in order to start schools to educate the poor is a beautiful reminder of our work in Catholic education.
The gospel for today’s memoria was Our Lord reminding us that unless we become like little children we can never enter the kingdom. Every Catholic philosophy of education should be grounded in the gospel realization that each child is an icon of what all of us must become. The teacher should regard his students with wonder, curiosity, humor, love and the intrinsic respect due to another human being. From this Christ-like love the rest of education can flow. Without it all we are doing is cramming heads full of facts.
St John Baptist de la Salle, patron of teachers, pray for us.
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  • Amen! Just read this past week an article from the local paper about six year old elementary students whose teachers got them to stage “a protest”, lining collected plastic bags up and down a street to “raise awareness” about waste and whatnot and how they can now go home and “educate” their parents on the issue, so that everytime mom or dad gets groceries they’re going to get a nice little lecture from their own kid. The teachers in the article who have been cramming this stuff into their students heads called it working at “the grassroots level”. Yup, uh-huh. Wonderful stuff that goes in the schools now.

  • Amen indeed! I teach at a Lasallian University, and John Baptiste deserves to be better known than he is…hence my latest post (where a reader directed me here). Thanks for posting this!

  • Lovely picture of a wonderful saint..

  • The Black Cordelias keep an eye on us daily. My goal is to post one of the new saints or beati from the papacy of JP2 (whenever possible) with a photograph and link to their hagiography. If you would consider adding us to your blogroll, I would be happy to reciprocate.For some reason, I also thought you would especially appreciate the blog name.