De La Salle Brothers

Brother Visitors

St. John Baptist de La Salle abandoned his family home, moved in with his teachers, renounced his position as Canon and wealth, and formed the community that became known as the Brothers of the Christian Schools. One of the first to emphasize classroom teaching over individual instruction, he was named Patron of Teachers in 1950.

The Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools is a Church-approved society of male religious who do not take Holy Orders. "The purpose of the Institute is to give a human and Christian education to the young, especially the poor, according to the ministry which the Church has entrusted to it."

Today, assisted by some 73,000 lay colleagues, the Brothers teach over 900,000 students in over 60 districts in 80 countries. The first three 'Founding Brothers' in the Philippines - Blimond Pierre, Aloysius Gonzaga, and Augusto Correge - arrived in the Philippines from Europe on March 10, 1911. Together with an additional six who arrived on June 16, 1911, the Brothers opened the first La Salle school in the country in Paco, Manila.

Until the mid-sixties, the Brothers in the Philippines constituted a sub-district of the San Francisco District and, thereafter, up to 1970, the Baltimore District. On February 2, 1970, the Philippine Province became an independent District to be officially known as the De La Salle Brothers - Philippine District. Myanmar is its only sub-district.

Brother Visitor is the official title of the head of a District of the De La Salle Brothers while Brother 'Provincial' is sometimes used to refer to the head of a District particularly for communications with non-members of the Lasallian Family as this is the more commonly used title in other religious congregations. For members of the Lasallian Family, the preferred and official title is Brother Visitor." The Rule of the Brothers of the Christian Schools defines the Brother Visitor as --

"...the guarantor of the unity and vitality of the District. He is the one primarily responsible for the District and is its principal animator. He exercises his authority as a major superior in accordance with the norms of canon law, the legislation of the Institute and the directives given by the District Chapter.

Brother Visitor is at the service of his Brothers, ready to listen to them and remaining in contact with them. He is careful to help each Brother to develop his vocation. He promotes close cooperation between the Brothers in order to help them carry out their mission more effectively in all its aspects.

The Brother Visitor assigns the Brothers to their communities and provides for the different posts of responsibility according to the norms established by the District Chapter. He visits the communities and ensures that the District remains in contact with the Region and the Center of the Institute.

He admits candidates to the Novitiate and also to the making of vows. It falls within his competence to grant the authorizations specified in canon law including the publication of writings on matters of religion or morality."

The Philippine District has had eight Brother Visitors elected for three-year terms starting in 1970 with Br. Justin Lucian FSC who was the last Auxiliary Visitor from the Baltimore District and the first Brother Visitor of the Philippine District.