Monthly Archives: July 2012


2012 FSC Awards: Impact

The 2012 FSC Awards and Gifts

Being present at the 3rd Annual FSC Awards this past June left those in attendance with a profound sense of the impact Lasallian Volunteers, Alumni, De La Salle Christian Brothers and those that support us have on one another as well as those we serve.

The 2012 FSC Awards were celebrated in collaboration with the Buttimer Institute at Saint Mary’s College California. The Lasallian Volunteers recognized:

Chris Giangregorio, LV 01-03; Brother Anthony Lenz, FSC; Jon Cassin

  • Brother Anthony Lenz, FSC with the Farrell Community Award;
  • BJ Cassin (accepted on his behalf by son Jon) with the Johnston Faith Award; and
  • Chris Giangregorio, LV 01-03 with the Bassen Service Award

The awards have been created in honor of and named after three Brothers that exhibited a wide range of support for and presence to the Lasallian Mission during their life times. Learn more about the Awards themselves here.

Recipient and Alum Chris Giangregorio offered the following speech and reflection after being recognized:

Chris Giangregorio, 01-03; Brother Anthony Lenz, FSC; Jon Cassin

“It is quite an honor to be receiving one of these three Lasallian awards, especially in front of so many dedicated and amazing fellow Lasallians. Being here is made even more meaningful because all three of the namesakes for tonight’s awards have played a significant role in my formation as an educator.

12 years ago I had no idea what it meant to call myself a Lasallian.  I got my first real glimpse of what it meant to serve the underserved during my senior year here at St. Mary’s College when I would go to the LEO center in Oakland once a week and work with the students for a few hours.  Br. Chris Bassen was there every time and would welcome us and explain to the new volunteers what they would be doing.  More important than just welcoming us, though, was the fact that Br. Chris could be seen modeling

Lasallian Volunteers Alumni gathered for FSC Awards

for all of us what patience and working with those entrusted to our care is truly about.

The next year I became a Lasallian Volunteer.  I lived in a small community in St. Louis, where I worked at first year San Miguel School, De La Salle Middle School.  It was in my first few months that I met former Superior General, Br. John Johnston.  He came to our small 2 bedroom apartment, which had no dining room, and had dinner with our community of 2 people.  During that dinner with Br. John I learned how widespread the Lasallian world really was.  I also learned that no matter how small or new, every single site where the Lasallian mission is at work is worthy of the support and attention of even the busiest of us.

Guests of the Evening

As Heather mentioned, my next two years were spent working in Harlem at Resurrection School.  I was fortunate enough to live in community with Br. Michael Farrell, who taught me that a strong faith community and supportive family and friends are essential in sustaining the work that we do.  I could think of no better example than Br. Michael Farrell when it comes to supporting those with whom you work and share community.

I could go on about these great men, but I to sum it all up: Through Brothers Chris, John, and Michael, I have seen compassionate work in action, been inspired by the international efforts of the De La Salle Christian Brothers, and realized that our work doesn’t stop once the students leave for the day.

Director, Jolleen Wagner; Guest of Honor, Jon Cassin; Alum and Former Director, Alisa Macksey

The Br. Chris Bassen Service award is for those of us who have continued to incorporate service to the underserved into our lives since our time as Lasallian Volunteers.  I want to thank current and former LVs (several of whom are here tonight) who continue to be involved in the mission; you are a source of inspiration to your fellow co-workers, and most importantly our students and their families.

This work cannot be done without the love and prayers and understanding of friends and family.  I want to thank all of my friends and family who have continued to be there for me even when I decided to move over 2000 miles away from them after college…and then stay away for 5 years.

Director, Jolleen Wagner and Award Recipient, Brother Anthony Lenz, FSC

But I came back with my future wife, and fellow Lasallian Volunteers Alum, so hopefully that made up for it.  And to my wife, Kristen, and son, Matteo, who could not be here tonight.  Thank you for providing me with that essential support when I come home.  You help me keep life in perspective and provide me with the love and motivation to do what I do day in and day out.

Finally, to all my colleagues from De La Salle at St. Matthew’s, Resurrection, and De Marillac Academy…thank you for making my decision to be involved in such work so easy every year.  To work side by side with you has been a humbling experience and an honor.  I look forward to the many years of collaboration and friendship that lie ahead.”

Blessing of the Honorees

By |July 12th, 2012|Categories: news + events|Tags: |Comments Off on 2012 FSC Awards: Impact

Orientation 2012 Invitation

You are officially invited to join us for the 2012 Orientation Retreat, an invaluable experience for incoming Lasallian Volunteers.

Not only is this the first time the LVs meet the rest of their cohort they’ll be serving beside (and living in community with), this is also when they receive the training that introduces them to the Lasallian mission and prepares them for service.

Lewis University

Saturday, July 21

4:00- 5:00
Courtyard Cafe

Sunday, July 29

11:00 – 12:30
Call to Mission Ceremony (Commissioning)
Darcy Great Room

12:30 – 1:30
Sunday Liturgy
Sancta Alberta Chapel

1:30 –  3:30
Celebratory BBQ
The Pavilion

If you are able to join us for one or both events,  please RSVP:

Andrew Blythe
(202) 529-0047

By |July 10th, 2012|Categories: Uncategorized|Comments Off on Orientation 2012 Invitation

John Dixon

Service Site: St. Gabriel’s Hall in Audubon, PA

College: Saint Mary’s College of California

What do you do?
I work as a teacher’s assistant in the subjects of math, history, and reading comprehension. I also act as a counseling aid and role model for the students.

Why did you choose to become a Lasallian Volunteer?  Have your hopes about the program been realized?
I chose to become a Lasallian Volunteer for a lot of reasons.  The first being I wanted to explore a new part of the country.  I was curious to know if I could adjust to a new atmosphere and embrace it.  This hope was met because, though it was a big adjustment, I was patient with myself and grew to enjoy living there and was sad to leave.  I also joined because I have heard of my much disappointment the youth of the country has faced in education and wanted to aid.  As I have been blessed to have such valued education I wanted to share it with others who don’t have that privilege.  This hope was met as I was able to pass on what I was taught to students who have faced much adversity in their lives.  Also, it was met because I was able to empathized with them how much of struggle school can be and encouraged them to be patient with themselves in understanding the material.  Thankfully they grew to thrive in school more than they had before and my hope is that they continue to do so.  Finally, why I chose to join LV was to serve a cause beyond myself and hopefully make a difference in that cause.  This hope was met and surpassed because when any one of my students had a better day than the previous one, the cause was being served.

What is the most important “thing,” do you think, that your students need from you? What do you do to try to provide this?

The most important “thing” I think my students need from me is to be present with them.  To acknowledge my interest in them; ask how their family is, attend after-school football game and cheer them on; to engage them outside of the classroom in order to establish trust with them.  This helps them to realize that there are people who care about and strive to help them.  Students can believe that they are alone and need to feel that they are in a place of care and protection.

What is the most challenging obstacle that your students face?  How do your school and your own outreach try to empower them to overcome this obstacle?
The most challenging obstacle that the students face is making the time they spend at our treatment center as effective as possible.  The students have faced much adversity in their lives and it has left a lasting impression.  As the students are admitted for only a nine to twelve month period there is a limited time to provide them with proper education, counseling, etc…  Therefore, we do our best to utilize the time we have with them and to make the help we provide more lasting.  From my observation I have learned the best medicine to provide for them is a pair of listening ears.  As I said before the students need to know that people care about, therefore, when they feel troubled listening to them and offering counsel allows them to feel safe and cared for.

Why would you recommend the LV program to a college senior considering volunteering?
If you are curious to learn more about yourself and discover new talents then the LV program is a great way to find out.

By |July 2nd, 2012|Categories: lv of the month|Comments Off on John Dixon