Brother Álvaro Rodríguez Echeverría, FSC, Superior General of the Christian Brothers, with Mrs. Maryann Donohue-Lynch, President-Principal of Saint Raphael Academy.

On Tuesday, November 1, 2011, Saint Raphael Academy had the great privilege of welcoming the Superior General of the Christian Brothers, Brother Álvaro Rodríguez Echeverría, FSC, to our campus.

Click here to read the Providence Journal's coverage of Brother Álvaro's visit to Saint Raphael Academy.

Accompanied by Brothers Robert Schieler, General Councilor – The United States and Toronto Region, and Auxiliary Visitor, Jerome Sullivan, Brother Álvaro was able to spend the day at Saint Raphael Academy touring our campus, praying and meeting with our students, faculty, staff, and administrators, and confirming that Saint Raphael Academy is indeed a place of faith, service, and community. (Photos from Brother Álvaro’s visit appear below.)

As Superior General of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, Brother Álvaro holds the highest office in the largest Roman Catholic religious order of men devoted to the mission of education.

The Brothers of the Christian Schools, founded by John Baptist de La Salle, the Patron Saint of Teachers of Youth, is an international Roman Catholic order of lay Religious Brothers, who — together and in association with their Partners in mission — strive to provide “a human and Christian education to the young, especially the poor, according to the ministry entrusted to them by the Church.” Today, 6,000 Christian Brothers and 100,000 lay people teach nearly 1 million students in schools, colleges, and universities in 82 countries worldwide.( For more information about the Brothers of the Christian Schools, please visit, lasalle.org.)

Brother Álvaro’s visit to Saint Raphael Academy was part of a greater tour of the District of Eastern North America (DENA), allowing Brother Álvaro to travel from Rome, Italy to meet with Brothers of the Christian Schools, along with Lasallian Partners and students, from Toronto to Washington, D.C., to Warren, Michigan, and even, Pawtucket, Rhode Island. This is the first opportunity for Brother Álvaro to tour the entire District of Eastern North America since its creation in 2009.

The District of Eastern North America is the result of the merger of three previously established Districts: New York – Toronto, Long Island – New England, and Baltimore, and brings together over 350 Christian Brothers, over 3,500 Lasallian teachers and partners, and more than 75 Brothers’ communities and ministries. (For more information about DENA, please visit fscdena.org.)

As part of his official Pastoral Visit, Brother Álvaro encouraged the Lasallians at Saint Raphael Academy to “live Lasallian values with even greater authenticity,” particularly in this unique time of association with Partners in pursuing the Lasallian Mission of educational service to the young, especially the poor.

Brother Álvaro was named Superior General of the Christian Brothers in 2000, becoming the 26th leader of the Order founded in the 17th century by St. John Baptist de La Salle. Brother Álvaro was re-elected in 2007 for another seven years.

Born in Costa Rica, Brother Álvaro graduated from Universidad La Salle Mexico. He then joined the Central American District of the Christian Brothers in 1959 and later professed his perpetual vows. He began his career in education as a teacher and mentor in Mexico and Guatemala for eight years. In the 1970s and 1980s, Brother Álvaro worked in Guatemala and Nicaragua during a period when there was an undeclared war between the notorious Death Squads and the ordinary people of those countries, resulting in thousands of deaths. As a teacher, he personally experienced the violence and underlying tensions of these difficult years for the Brothers, their students and families. In addition to serving as a teacher and administrator, Brother Álvaro is a former Auxiliary Visitor for the District of Central America and Vicar General. In 1992, he was elected Vicar General for the Order, based in the generalate in Rome.

Below you will find photos from Brother Álvaro’s visit at Saint Raphael Academy:

Brother Álvaro greets Kristina Pinault (Class of 2014, of Swansea, MA) and other students as they walk to their next class.

Administrators from Saint Raphael Academy with Brothers Schieler, Álvaro, and Sullivan. (From Left to Right: Mrs. Darby Castigliego, Vice President for Operations, Brother Robert Schieler, General Councilor – The United States and Toronto Region, Brother Álvaro, Superior General of the Christian Brothers, Brother Jerome Sullivan, Auxiliary Visitor of DENA, and Mrs. Laura Loffredo, Director of Development.)

Brother Schieler interacts with SRA students in our Visual Arts Studio.

Brother Álvaro with Cesar Mejia (Class of 2012, of Providence, RI).

Brother Álvaro with Sister Regina Brennan, R.S.M., Guidance Counselor.

Brother Álvaro meets a recent transfer student from Colegio Dominicano De La Salle, a Christian Brothers High School in the Dominican Republic.

Brother Álvaro with Mr. Terry Murray, Alumni Affairs Coordinator and Faculty Member.

Brother Álvaro with Anamaria Arteaga (Class of 2012, of Pawtucket, RI), Juan Bedoya (Class of 2012, of Johnston, RI), and Brother Jerome, reviewing pictures of first graduating classes of Saint Raphael Academy.

Brother Álvaro with Anamaria Arteaga (Class of 2012, of Pawtucket, RI) and Juan Bedoya (Class of 2012, of Johnston, RI), who guided Brother Álvaro's tour of Saint Raphael Academy.

Brother Álvaro speaks to an honors-level Spanish class about his typical day as Superior General of the Christian Brothers.

Brother Álvaro with Juan Bedoya (Class of 2012, of Johnston, RI) and Anamaria Arteaga (Class of 2012, of Pawtucket, RI), walking the historic campus of Saint Raphael Academy.

Anamaria Arteaga (Class of 2012, of Pawtucket, RI) talks with Brother Álvaro about Lasallian Youth here at Saint Raphael Academy.

Brother Álvaro and Brother Schieler at a luncheon with members of Lasallian Youth from Saint Raphael Academy.

 

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