Monthly Archives: August 2016

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Jon Vanegas: A Letter to Myself

Jon and Ellie at the LV Orientation Commissioning Ceremony

Jon and Ellie at the LV Orientation Commissioning Ceremony

During LV Orientation, I felt very nervous about my upcoming year as a Science and Religion teacher at San Miguel School. I had no teaching experience, no background knowledge of secondary education, and no formal education training for that matter. Now that I’m starting my third official week of teaching, I can finally say, IT’S A LOT OF WORK! I’m so tired all the time. I find myself dozing off regularly. I’m in bed by 9:30. Gross.

Jon Vanegas, 16-17, San Miguel School, Washington, DC

Jon Vanegas, 16-17, San Miguel School, Washington, DC

It’s really tough. To be quite honest, sometimes I want to give up. And it so happens that last week was one of those weeks. But, that’s all my negativity speaking. I try my very best to not let it get to me. So, during times of great stress, nerves, and fear about a new chapter of my life, I tend to write letters to myself. Is that weird? Maybe. Is it helpful? Totally.

I originally had an idea of what I wanted my first blog post to be. However, now that I’m reevaluating my thoughts, I decided to cheat this time. I’m sharing a letter I wrote to myself last Friday. In a way, it’s meditation for me. Now that I’m thinking about it, I’ll read it whenever I feel low as a reminder of the strength I seek for my own faith. Enjoy!

Dear Jon,

Don’t be afraid of what you don’t know. Don’t be afraid to let go. Don’t be afraid to say “yes.” Certainly don’t be afraid to say “no.”

You’ve made it this far. Your willingness to go out of your own comfort zone to teach, inspire, and, hopefully, learn will bring you to a better understanding of the world around you. Think about your 4th grade self. How alone and hopeless you felt. How uninspired you were. Do you see yourself in your students? Do you see that hopelessness in their eyes? Reach out to them. Talk to them. Tell them what you wished someone told you (and make sure they get it).

No matter how tired, how stressed, or how annoyed you are, remember that someone’s future is in your hands. The actions you serve, the words you speak, and the peace you seek will make a huge impact in their lives.

Remember this: “when it looked like the sun wasn’t going to shine anymore, God put a rainbow in the clouds.” Take two things from this. Whenever you enter a dark passage in your life, remember to look for rainbows in your clouds. Think of all the people that inspired you to move on in your life. Think of all the hands that held yours as you took down every obstacle that came your way. But most importantly, always remember to be a rainbow in the children’s clouds. Be the help these children look for when they enter the classroom. Be an inspiration, a light, and a blessing to them, as they are to you.

Love,

Jon

Jon Vanegas is a 1st year LV serving at San Miguel School in Washington, DC and is a 2016 graduate of Manhattan College.

By |August 24th, 2016|Categories: blog, news + events|Comments Off on Jon Vanegas: A Letter to Myself

Brother Lawrence Goyette Joins LV Staff as Animator

Brother Lawrence Goyette, FSC

Brother Lawrence Goyette, FSC

Lasallian Volunteers (LV) welcomed Brother Lawrence Goyette, FSC, to the staff on August 1, 2016, to serve as animator. Brother Lawrence, a longtime friend of Lasallian Volunteers, will support the staff and LVs by aiding in the sharing of the Lasallian charism. He will be based out of Manhattan College in Riverdale, New York, and spend time in the Washington, D.C. LV office.

Brother Lawrence has worked and/or lived with Lasallian Volunteers for 22 years in Freeport, New York, Concord, California, and Providence, Rhode Island.

“During these many years of association with over 30 LVs I have become a better person and a better Christian Brother,” said Brother Lawrence. “I have enjoyed all my informal experiences acting as a mentor for so many idealistic Lasallians and I hope I can continue to accompany our LVs, especially in their early formative years as educators.”

Brother Lawrence has been a Brother for 49 years, serving as a teacher and administrator. In 1993, he founded The San Miguel School of Providence, which launched the San Miguel movement in the Lasallian Region of North America (RELAN). Today, there are 11 San Miguel schools in RELAN, which serve at-risk youth typically in grades five through eight.

By |August 18th, 2016|Categories: news + events|Comments Off on Brother Lawrence Goyette Joins LV Staff as Animator

Orientation Prepares LVs for Year of Service

In order to ensure a smooth transition into a year of faith, service and community, this year’s cohort of 38 Lasallian Volunteers (LVs) gathered for Orientation July 21-31, 2016, at Lewis University in Romeoville, Illinois, marking the beginning of the 2016-2017 service year.

LVs participate in Ropes Course

LVs participate in Ropes Course

Twenty first-year LVs and 18 second-year LVs spent 10 days together participating in community formation, presentations, activities and prayer centered around topics such as Lasallian charism, living in community, building strong relationships, peace and justice, and spirituality. The workshops are designed to help the LVs transition into this new experience, as all of them are recent college graduates, teaching them practical tools and skills they can use at their service sites.

See more pictures >

For Elexus Mays, a first-year LV serving at John XXIII Educational Center in Racine, Wisconsin, Orientation was her first experience with the Lasallian family.

Elexus Mays, 16-17, John XXIII Educational Center, Racine, WI

Elexus Mays, 16-17, John XXIII Educational Center, Racine, WI

“LV Orientation was a great experience,” said Mays. “I learned a lot about myself in those 10 days. At the beginning of Orientation, I felt very overwhelmed and unsure if the program was for me and if I was doing the right thing. By the time Orientation was over, I knew that this was exactly where I needed to be. Everybody was so open, welcoming and sweet. I never thought such a strong community could be formed in 10 days. I now have this whole new layer of support that I didn’t have before and I am extremely grateful for it.”

LVs will serve at 24 ministries, 19 of which are Lasallian, as teachers, tutors, mentors, social workers and more. This year includes one new site: San Miguel School in Washington, D.C. The LV program has returned to Ocean Tides School in Narragansett, Rhode Island, and the Midwest District Office in Burr Ridge, Illinois, after a brief hiatus at each.

This year marks the 28th year for the program. A total of more than 700 volunteers have participated in this program of faith, service and community that was developed as a movement to carry out the Lasallian mission.

 

By |August 11th, 2016|Categories: news + events|Comments Off on Orientation Prepares LVs for Year of Service

FSC Awards to Honor SFNO Lasallians

The 2016 Lasallian Volunteers FSC Awards will honor three Lasallians from the District of San Francisco New Orleans (SFNO). The FSC Awards celebrate supporters of Lasallian Volunteers (LV) who have made notable contributions to the program.

This year, LVs will honor Brother Jonathan Cord, FSC, with the Farrell Community Award, Marilyn Paquette with the Bassen Service Award, and Dr. Carole Swain with the Johnston Faith Award. They will be honored October 1, 2016, in a ceremony at Saint Mary’s College of California in Moraga, which is sponsoring the event. The awards are named in the spirit of three Brothers who embodied the LV values of faith, service and community during their lifetimes.

Brother Jonathan Cord, FSC. Courtesy District of San Francisco New Orleans

Brother Jonathan Cord, FSC. Courtesy District of San Francisco New Orleans

The Farrell Community Award, named in honor of Brother Michael Farrell, FSC (1940-2009), recognizes supporters who have lived in community with Lasallian Volunteers. LVs chose Brother Jonathan for this honor to celebrate the strong and positive impact he has had on LVs he has lived with in the San Miguel Community in Tucson, Arizona, and the De La Salle Christian Brothers Community in Portland, Oregon. Brother Jonathan, an alumnus of both Christian Brothers High School in Sacramento, California, and Saint Mary’s College of California, currently serves as the office manager for the Corporate Work Study Program at San Miguel High School in Tucson, where he has lived and worked since 2009. Since 1966, he has served in a number of Lasallian schools and as director of several communities.

Marilyn Paquette. Courtesy Lifetouch

Marilyn Paquette. Courtesy Lifetouch

The Bassen Service Award, named in honor of Brother Christopher Bassen, FSC (1942-2006), recognizes LV alumni who have continued a life of service. LVs selected Paquette for this award to honor her continued service to the mission and LV program as board member, site director and mentor. Paquette, a graduate of Saint Mary’s College of California, served as an LV for two years at The San Miguel School of Providence in Rhode Island. She went on to serve at Sacred Heart Cathedral Preparatory in San Francisco, California, and Justin-Siena High School in Napa, California. She also was director of Lasallian Student Programs for the former District of San Francisco. She is now principal of De La Salle Academy in Concord, California, a San Miguel model school she helped start in 2014.

Carole Swain. Courtesy Saint Mary’s College of California

Carole Swain. Courtesy Saint Mary’s College of California

The Johnston Faith Award, named in honor of Brother John Johnston, FSC (1933-2007), recognizes supporters who have demonstrated great faith in the work of LVs by sharing time, talent or treasure. LV chose Swain for this award because of the support she has given to every facet of the LV program, from recruitment to LV Scholars. Swain is vice president for mission at Saint Mary’s College of California and directs the Masters of Arts in Education with an emphasis on Lasallian Students and the Lasallian Educator Fellowship programs. Swain has served as chair of the boards of De Marillac Academy in San Francisco and De La Salle High School in Concord. She was a founding member of the Lasallian Education Council for the Lasallian Region of North America (RELAN).

To register to attend the FSC Awards, contact Christopher Anderson at canderson@cbconf.org or 202-529-0047. To reserve a spot online, visit the LV donation page, make a suggested donation of $50 per person or $350 for table of eight, and note “FSC Awards” in the comment section.

Recipients are selected on a rotating basis between the Districts in the Lasallian Region of North America (RELAN). The 2017 recipients will be selected from the District of Eastern North America. LVs gave out the first FSC Awards in 2010.

More on the FSC Awards >

Biographical information provided by the District of San Francisco New Orleans

By |August 11th, 2016|Categories: news + events|Comments Off on FSC Awards to Honor SFNO Lasallians