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ImageThe beginning of Lasallian education dates back to 1680 when John Baptist de La Salle founded the De La Salle Order. He  opens a little school, recruits helpers, shares his life with  them. He inspires a sense of identity, of mission. Working as a team, they  form  a community and  call themselves  Brothers  and dedicated their lives  to  teaching  the  neglected  and  the  deprived.  The dream was  for  social  change, to  touch the  youthful  heart  and  to harness its creative forces for a culture of compassion, of service. This Lasallian charism takes firm root and soon spreads out across the globe in over 80 countries. Lasallian Schools flourish and the Brothers gain the respect of all whose hearts they have touched. There are programmes for the illiterate, migrants, itinerants, physically and mentally disabled, youth with learning impediments, youngsters with behavioural problems. There are pastoral centres offering a variety of religious and apostolic activities and also centres for sport and other forms of recreation and social activities.

ImageThe Beginning of Shared-Mission
In the face of the many challenges in today’s world, it is no longer conceivable that the Brothers can ensure the continuation and vitality of the Lasallian Mission by themselves.

The dwindling number of Brothers due to aging, restrictive policies in many countries, coupled with very much fewer youths joining the Brotherhood called for a fresh look into the future of the Lasallian traditions worldwide. For these reasons, the Brothers and the alumni and/or lay partners began working together to find ways to preserve the Lasallian Heritage for posterity, thus marking a new chapter in the Journey with a Dream.

Today, the De La Salle Institute world wide often speaks of the La Salle Mission as a “shared-mission” wherein the future of  the Brothers’ work is no longer in the hands of the Brothers alone, but in the unified commitment of all who espouse its Mission. Henceforth, the mission is in the hands of the Brothers and their Lay Colleagues. In fact, it is by togetherness and by association that the Brothers and their Lay Colleagues, will fulfill the present-day mission instituted by the Founder, St. John Baptist de La Salle. This will ensure the continuation and vitality of the Lasallian Mission to cater to the needs of the many youth and the poor.

The Shared-Mission Shared-Mission varies in different  degrees  and  levels of commitment and sharing by the Brothers and their lay colleagues. The Partnership involves not just a consultative role but also a deliberative one for Lay Colleagues in determining the pursuit of the mission.

1. Co-responsibility.
2. Greater collaboration between the Brothers and their Lay
3. More creative ways to serve the youth Colleagues.

The Principles of Shared-Mission
By working together in a Shared-Mission, the Brothers and their lay colleagues commit themselves to:

     1.  the spirit and mission of St. John Baptist de La Salle.
     2.  providing excellent formal or informal educational programmes
          to the young in schools.
     3.  the service of the poor through education.
     4.  the establishment of diverse educational communities.
     5.  the equitable treatment of all members of the society irrespective
          of race, colour or creed.

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