Posted by St Michael's College, Adelaide
on 28 October 2021
De La Salle Day is a very important day in the College calendar as we celebrate the life of St John Baptist de La Salle, Founder of the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools, a Saint of the Catholic Church, and Patron of Christian Teachers.
Over the years, this day has evolved into a wonderful celebration of De La Salle’s legacy to us, with the Primary and Secondary campuses coming together. Unfortunately this year circumstances precluded us from gathering at the Secondary Campus, however, we celebrated the day at the Primary Campus with lots of fun activities, inflatables and musical entertainment provided by our Stage Band, Rock Band and Percussion Ensemble. Our Year 6 students provided great leadership and support in running fundraising activities which included “Guess the Snakes in the Jar” and a Zooper Dooper stall.
Students also enjoyed a complimentary sausage sizzle and fruit box. The Primary Campus raised $976.10 from gold coin donations and various fundraising activities. We would like to thank all students, staff and parents for their support for making this a very enjoyable day.
The money raised will be donated to support the work of the De La Salle brothers in underprivileged schools and orphanages overseas.
Mr Damian McNamara, Director – Student Wellbeing & Administration – Primary
It was great to celebrate De La Salle Day this year, albeit in a slightly different format. The day started with a liturgy in Founders Hall, which explained why we celebrate the day and reinforced how significant it is for our College community.
A true highlight was seeing the Year 12s get into the spirit of the day and dress up in some hilarious costumes which provided great entertainment for students and staff, as well as some comic relief for the Year 12’s at a busy time in their school year. The Year 7s and 8s were able to participate by helping choose the “best costume” in a lively session in Founders Hall.
The inaugural De La Salle Day Quiz was beamed into classes, where students from Year 7 to 12 competed for a pizza lunch prize. The Quiz, based on popular culture, brought back some wonderful memories of songs, TV shows and movies that parents may well remember listening to and watching with their kids when they were younger.
The break times featured great music performances from some of our talented music students, with a variety of amazing food on offer for the students to purchase.
We pride ourselves at St Michael’s in trying to establish positive working relationships between staff and students and De La Salle Day was a great experience for us to enjoy together and share a common appreciation for being part of the global Lasallian community.
Mr Sam Kitschke, Director – Pastoral – Secondary
College Captains’ De La Salle Day Address
Each year, the College Captains at St Michael’s College Adelaide address the school community on De La Salle Day. Below is an excerpt that I would encourage all to read:
Good morning everyone! Welcome to De La Salle Day – 2021!
It is incredible to be able to stand in front of you all again, after another crazy, unpredictable year, with all that’s going on in the world and be reminded of how lucky we are to be a part of such an inclusive, fun, rewarding Lasallian community… a culture so steeped in tradition, yet relevant to us all today.
Now we know that most of you have heard the story of our Founder, St John Baptist de La Salle before, but today we celebrate the achievements of the Lasallian Brothers and the story of how their determination and resilience left a lasting legacy on our world. Saint John Baptist believed that education gave hope and opportunity for all people to lead a life of dignity and freedom, which could not be more relevant to the world today. He dedicated his life to education and training teachers to be role models, have strong leadership skills and teach with purpose and passion. He saw value in the experience and passions of every person, no matter their status, and gave dignity to those who had lost it. The forming Brothers provided a modern education (for the time), to many homeless children, allowing them to become inspired, and take on a completely new, positive way of life.
As Lasallians, we are challenged to reach out and help others, no matter their circumstances. At St Michael’s, individuality and uniqueness is embraced. Within the fences that encase our school, we see elite sportspeople, talented musicians, tradespeople, artists, writers, future lawyers, doctors, police officers, and others with their own, unique paths. Many children around the world do not experience the simple joys of childhood and youth due to poverty, war, sickness and other terrible circumstances that we could never even fathom. So, instead of taking our incredible place in the world for granted, we must grab life with both hands, dare to dream, and breathe in this wonderful elixir that was part of a Lasallian vision 300 years ago. Let us remind you that youthfulness is not necessarily about the years counted on the old-o-meter, but it is about the spirit and passion that radiates when we embrace the gifts of nature, community and love. We must take leaps of faith, get out of our comfort zone, and find our own, unique purpose and mission. So today, in what we like to call the ‘festival of youth,’ we hope you can get out of your comfort zone, and participate in as many of today’s activities as you can, whilst remembering the values of inclusivity and uniqueness.
One of the most important aspects of human spirit is dignity. Dignity means to be respected and valued for who you are, what you believe in, and how you live your life. Simply put, treating other people with dignity means treating people the way we would like to be treated, something that we as a College hold in very high regard. Importantly, dignity is part of the glue that holds many of our relationships together. The mutual recognition between one another about their desire to be heard, seen, listened to, treated fairly; to be understood, recognised and to feel safe in this world allows us to feel a sense of freedom, a sense of independence and a life filled with opportunity, hope and possibility. This directly relates to what De La Salle intended with the Brothers and his teachings: to give the less fortunate the opportunity to achieve their dreams, to help people understand that they are indeed worth something, that their current situation does not define who they can become. At St Michael’s, we aim to live this ideology day-to-day in the way that we treat one another and the value we place on our opportunities.
To the younger year levels, you are on the road to becoming the person you are choosing to be. In doing this, you will meet people of all ages, with different life stories, varying backgrounds, with different views and values. We challenge you to be curious. We challenge you to use your voice. We challenge you to take hold of your Lasallian education which is teaching you to be the uplifting, resilient, strong-minded person that you are, and will continue to be.
To the Year 12’s, this year has brought us all closer together, solidifying our friendships, and teaching us resilience that we will take with us into a bright future. We are just so proud of you. Let’s smash next term and exams!
Moving forward, we hope to keep these themes of dignity, youth, individuality and diversity in the forefront of our minds. We are challenged to open our hearts and minds to the opportunities that present themselves when we begin to explore the wonderful, individual, diverse journeys of the people that surround you.
Alice Kneebone and Sebastian Leaney
The funds raised will be allocated to the following projects:
- $20,000 to Albans Boys and Girls High School, Multan (classroom furniture and computer lab upgrade)
- $17,000 to La Salle Urdu High School, Faisalabad (equipment replacement)
- $20,000 to La Salle Technical College, Hohola, (textbooks)
- $13,000 to be allocated later to one or more projects in PNG or Pakistan.
Each of these projects will benefit poor and disadvantaged students in Pakistan and Papua New Guinea, and will make a difference, not only to the current cohort of students but students in the coming years.