On October 12, 2021, within the framework of the Lasallian month for peace, the Communities and Educational Institutions of Mexico and the Antilles, members of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (La Salle), celebrated a Eucharist of forgiveness and reconciliation, where they reaffirmed their commitment to build Safe Communities for all persons who form part of the Institute and to proceed with zero tolerance for any act of abuse or discrimination.
Aware of the past and in a spirit of reconciliation, they asked forgiveness of all those who have suffered harassment, sexual abuse, violence or discrimination by a member of the Church or of the Lasallian Community and for the re-victimization by not accompanying them in the best way; they also expressed their solidarity with the victims and their families for the pain caused; they prayed for the complete healing of those affected; and they asked for empathy and wisdom to look after them from the merciful, close and loving face of the Church.
The Eucharist of forgiveness and reconciliation is part of the commitments made by Lasallian Educational Institutions:
- Transform Church and educational structures, affected in some cases by silence and indifference, to ensure appropriate proceedings, truth and justice; collaborating in all cases with Church and civil authorities in order to establish the pertinent responsibilities.
- Listen to and care for the victims with respect, dignity and closeness, through a specialized area that provides accompaniment and promotes personalized processes of complete healing, ensuring their good reputation.
- Advance in a timely and unobstructed manner in the assimilation of stricter protocols in the processes of selection, formation and permanence of Brothers and Partners and of those who belong to the Educational and Formation Communities.
- Strengthen, under the principles of zero tolerance and non-repetition, the protocols for prevention, detection, attention and penalty of acts of harassment, abuse, violence and discrimination.
- Promote, through the Safe Community Programme, a culture of prevention, respect, care and safeguard, especially for children (boys and girls), as well as adolescents.
- Strengthen the mechanisms and concrete actions for attention, accompaniment and reparation for victims.
“In this Eucharist of forgiveness and reconciliation, in which we ask God to recreate fraternity and peace as witnesses of the Gospel, bearers of good and joyful news, we want to express to all children (boys and girls), adolescents and young people, as well as to vulnerable adults, our commitment to continue building Safe Communities where we can live good treatment, communion, trust and care for one another, fraternity, respect and freedom, the joy of God’s Presence and of his Gospel, incarnating the culture of encounter and care”, remarked Br. Pedro Álvarez Arenas, Visitor of the District of Antillas-México Sur.