La Salle: 1911 - 1986
On June 16, 1911, nine Brothers of the Christian Schools from both Old World and New World opened the doors of De La Salle to approximately 100 boys of various ages on Calle Nozaleda in Paco at the former Perez Samanillo compound.
Thus began the first foundation of the La Salle Brothers in the Philippines and the beginning of the apostolic of Catholic education started by Saint John Baptist de la Salle in Rheims, France and at the time extended to this archipelago formerly colonized by Spain and subsequently by the United States of America.
In the admittedly biased words of Archbishop Jeremiah H. Harty, their alumnus at Christian Brothers' College in Saint Louis, Missouri and since 1904 Archbishop of the more than 300-year-old See of Manila, "With all due respects to the teaching orders none of them turned out such good men as the Christian Brothers." Being a "Brothers' boy" himself, he wanted the same for the new generation of Spanish-speaking Filipinos who were to receive their education in English.
Seventy-five years later, on June 15, 1986, that small school, transferred in 1921 to 2401 Taft Avenue, had spawned other schools and other institutions in Bacolod, Negros Occidental; in Iligan, Lanao del Norte; in Greenhills, Mandaluyong, Rizal; in Lipa, Batangas; in New Alabang, Metro Manila; and through the supervised schools, in Toledo, Cebu; in Aroroy, Masbate; in Bislig, Surigao del Norte; in Bobinawan, Bukidnon; and in Isabel, Leyte. The nine Brothers had become a province of more than 60 Brothers, more than half of them Filipinos.
And De La Salle, the first institution, a University since February 19, 1975, had expanded the work of those pioneers in primary and secondary education to tertiary and graduate education.
This history, written by Carlos Quirino (High School School Class of 1927), currently one of the senior historians and writers of the country, attempts to capture these 75 years not in terms of places and buildings and edifices, but in terms of people and their collective memories of Old Paco and Pre-War Singalong and Post-War Taft Avenue.
The volume records the fond remembrances, the joys and sorrows, the heroism and vision, the dedication and magnanimity of the scores of Brothers and lay professors and the more than 17,000 Brothers' boys who spent their formation years on the two campuses. While indeed De La Salle University opened its portals 13 years ago to co-eds in 1973, of necessity the focus during the first seven decades and a half will have to be on the boys and their achievements. in the fourth quarter century of De La Salle's journey, undoubtedly, the vital role of the Filipina will play a prominent part.
This history, therefore, is dedicated to the Brothers, the lay professors, and the Brothers' boys who have graced these hallowed halls in their joint quest of RELIGIO, MORES and CULTURA.
May Saint John Baptist de la Salle, whose Brothers continue to serve Filipino youth, bless this academic community named in his memory and the Republic of the Philippines, province of the De La Salle Brothers. May he bless, the Brothers who continue to work in the islands, as both De La Salle University and the La Salle Brothers continue their apostolate, together with their students and co-workers, beyond their first 75 years in our dear country.
Brother Andrew Gonzalez FSC Manila
(Foreword of La Salle: 1911-1986 by Carlos Quirino. Borrow the book at Mutien Marie 14 or email firstname.lastname@example.org)
We, the members of the Lasallian Partners Council and the District Council of the Philippine Lasallian Family, recognizing the substantial gains made in recent years as well as the numerous challenges that have yet to be addressed, commit ourselves to strengthening and maximizing the developments in the district by undertaking to realize the following by 2011:
In relation to the Brothers, we commit ourselves to
- working towards a goal of 65 professed Filipino Brothers
- placing them where they can be most effective and influential in the service of the Lasallian Mission
- establishing a clear understanding of the identity and role of the Brothers in the Lasallian Mission
- ensuring effective vocation promotion through both community and school efforts and appropriate accompaniment structures
- training and accompanying young Brothers, especially in administration and governance
- encouraging a spirit of genuine fraternity and solidarity among Brothers
- creating an environment of care and support in our communities and ministries
- reviving the interest of Brothers in foreign missions
- instilling among Brothers a greater sense of personal accountability to the District
In relation to the Lasallian Family, we commit ourselves to
- establishing a common understanding of the Lasallian identity and mission among Partners and Brothers
- enabling Partners to acquire a greater sense of co-responsibility and initiative in promoting the Lasallian Mission
- building up a critical mass of associates committed to the Lasallian Mission
- articulating a well-defined framework for intentional Lasallian communities and other forms of association
- establishing at least three (3) intentional Lasallian communities
- encouraging new forms of association which are actively involved in apostolates for the poor
In relation to Lasallian Formation, we commit ourselves to
- creating a pool of Lasallian experts, formators and animators to disseminate the Lasallian heritage and implement the District's Lasallian Formation Framework
- creating a resource center for Lasalliana
- creating and implementing a well-defined formation program for Associates, Partners, and other members of the Lasallian Family
- implementing a joint formation program for Brothers and Partners
- assuring the appropriate training and accompaniment of Lasallian Partners, especially in the areas of administration and governance
- pursuing the inclusion of immersion in Lasallian Partner communities in the formation program of Brothers
In relation to our present educational apostolates, we commit ourselves to
- implementing the Principles of Lasallian Education in the Philippines
- renewing our institutions in the following areas: a) education for justice and peace; b) education in faith; and c) responsiveness to the needs of the poor
- changing the general perception that Lasallian education is inaccessible to the poor
- ensuring that each school has sustainable projects for the poor
- establishing a unified District Educational System led by committed, competent and creative individuals and characterized by synergy, interdependence and unity of vision
- establishing a clear definition of District, affliate and supervised schools and working towards greater synergy among these schools
- strengthening the public school system through collaborative efforts
In relation to the new apostolates in direct service to the poor, we commit ourselves to
- encouraging Brothers and Lasallian Partners to continue undertaking creative initiatives in direct involvement in service to the poor
- encouraging Brothers' involvement in the Lasallian Volunteer communities
- encouraging and supporting Lasallian youth in undertaking apostolic initiatives in service to the poor
- having at least six (6) Lasallian Volunteer communities in different mission areas, including urban poor communities
- implementing the Social Development framework of the District
In relation to the governance of the Philippine Lasallian Family, we commit ourselves to
- creating well-defined communication flow and interrelationships between and among the District Council, the Lasallian Partners Council and the Federation of Lasallian Institutions
- assuring the well-defined and active participation of different sectors of the Lasallian Family in the different phases of the Convocation process
In relation to resources, we commit ourselves to
- building up financial and human resources to support the Lasallian Family formation and apostolates for the poor
- establishing a local and international network for sharing ideas and experiences on Lasallian Association