20 September 2018
His Holiness Pope Francis
Dear Holy Father,
Greetings from the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (De La Salle Brothers). Like many of the faithful we have watched with sadness the discord sown by some members of the hierarchy against your commitment to the Gospel of Jesus. I and our General Council write in support for your inspiring leadership and your call for all men and women of good will to live daily the beatitudes of Jesus.
Since the beginning of our Institute in the late 17th century in France, our Founder, Saint John Baptist de La Salle, was unwavering in his loyalty to the Pope. Our first ministry outside of France was in Rome as a demonstration of that loyalty. St. La Salle did not concern himself with the controversies of his day, Jansenism and Quietism. His life was consumed with training his first Brothers to be good shepherds, ambassadors of Christ and ministers of God in educating the poor and working class abandoned on the streets of France.
Your vision of Church confirms the foundational call of our Institute and Lasallian family to enter into a respectful dialogue with the persons we are called to serve, regardless of their faith or ethnicity. This attitude presupposes openness and a willingness to go to those at the borders in order to listen, to learn, to witness to Gospel values and, as far as possible, to announce the Word of God.
We pray this attitude and orientation will prevail among the global Catholic community, especially among our servant Bishop leaders.
We pray daily for your well-being. You are our Good Shepherd and you have called us by name. Know that we walk with you, together and by association, to procure the Glory of God as far as we shall be able.
We remain, with Saint John Baptist de La Salle, Patron of Teachers, your faithful servants. Fraternally,
Brother Robert Schieler, FSC
Brother Superior and members of the General Council