Executive Director's Message - Merv McCormack
Some years ago, I came across Quinn's work and LMC colleagues have regularly heard me quote from it. The following extract seems counterintuitive considering the detailed District 2018-22 Strategic Plan, but it nevertheless points to the challenges of successful leadership, particularly in such fast-paced and uncertain times:
"WE MAY KNOW WHERE WE WANT TO BE, BUT WE WILL SELDOM KNOW THE ACTUAL STEPS WE MUST TAKE TO GET THERE. WE MUST TRUST IN OURSELVES TO LEARN THE WAY, TO BUILD THE BRIDGE AS WE WALK ON IT." QUINN, R.E. (1996). DEEP CHANGE DISCOVERING THE LEADER WITHIN.
At that time, it accurately reflected the evolving relationship between the Lasallian Mission Council Board (LMC) and the nascent Lasallian Mission Services' (LMS) team, the LMC's operational arm. Now, in 2020, we can report there has been great progress. LMC, under the original chairmanship of the late Brother Chris Gorringe, and now under Wayne Bull's chairmanship, along with LMS and its expanded team of dedicated professionals, has undertaken significant steps in developing the District's facilitation of mission, governance and operational effectiveness.
There are now more Lasallian staff and students accessing formation opportunities, retreats and reflections days than ever before. With increasing confidence and effect, LMS maps where we hope to be in meeting the formation needs within the District, and we have a clear sense of the steps required to get there. The many hours spent over recent years in strategic and operational planning and consultations, has resulted in careful refinement of existing programs alongside the development of many new projects and offerings. Evaluations provided by staffs and students during that time reflect approval of LMS's work, and trust that its work is appreciated.
LMC: HELPING THE MISSION TO BE ACHIEVED:
LMC was established by the De La Salle Brothers of the District of Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and Papua New Guinea (ANZPPNG), as the lead entity responsible for conducting and sustaining the District's Lasallian mission, both current and into the future. As Lasallians, both Brothers and Partners, together and in association, we aim to ensure that co-responsibility is a central component in delivering and sustaining the work.
ASSOCIATION AND CO-RESPONSIBILITY:
LMC aims to reinforce the association between the Brothers and Partners in our mission, ensuring genuine co-responsibility in the planning and provision of a wide range of Lasallian programs and projects. Our mission is to work beyond boundaries of religion, economy and culture to help create more compassionate and just societies. LMC aims to sustain the mission by assisting schools to meet the educational and welfare needs of the young and especially the marginalised, so far as our resources permit.
WHAT DO WE DO?
LMC has a clear focus on ensuring, through LMS, that the Lasallian mission is effectively developed through the design, development and delivery of the best possible formation programs. The programs are focused on students and staff but are also suitable for any of our Boards. We also hope that schools may consider use of LMS resources for parent gatherings.
LMC, in common with all Lasallian works, takes as its inspiration, the central teachings of the Founder, St John Baptist de La Salle: "Recognise Jesus beneath the poor rags of the children who you have to instruct". When the Cardinal Archbishop of Paris threatened De La Salle with exile, he made no objection, saying that he could find God anywhere. He saw God's presence in the events that affected him, whether for good or ill. The call to prayer "Let us remember we are in the holy presence of God" is a reminder that sharing the mission is an invitation to put God at the centre of the Lasallian works in which we are engaged.
BUILDING THE BRIDGE:
De La Salle experienced regular challenges throughout his ministry. The path was rarely smooth, difficulties were common. Today, the pathways of change are certainly no less challenging. Few structures or policies assure success. Like the Founder and his small group of Brothers more than 330 years ago, we continue to build that bridge as we walk on it. De La Salle's perseverance in the face of the difficulties he faced is a regular inspiration to those who follow his footsteps. Tackling deep change and facing a new future, we are called to work with confidence and resolve as we teach minds, touch hearts, and transform lives in a world troubled by many new challenges.
LASALLIAN MISSION SERVICES TEAM
- Executive Director - Mr Merv McCormack
- Director of Operation - Ms Julie Alibrandi
- Communications Manager - Ms Kate Mason
- Director of Formation for Mission - Br Peter Ryan
- Director Emeritus of Formation - Br John Cantwell
- Associate Director Formation for Mission - Mr Philippe Dulawan
- Associate Director Young Lasallians - Ms Lydia Avia-Aumua
- Director of Vocations / Social Media Coordinator - Br Arian Lopez
- Leadership Development Consultant - Br Garry Coyte
- Acting CEO, Lasallian Foundation - Br Adrian Watson
- Development and Projects Officer - Ms Joanne Nehme
- Young Lasallian Coordinators - Mr Damian Khoury and Mr Sebastian Duhau