Given at the 2015 conference of Musica Sacra Florida at Ave Maria University.
By the feast of Saint Jean-Baptiste de La Salle the Church provides us today with an opportunity to reflect on the notion of Christian education. Here we do not simply mean the education of young people in a Christian context, but also the formation of saints; transmitting the life of virtue which is necessary for the salvation which, in the light of this paschal season, continues to fill us with joy and with hope.
Saint Jean-Baptise de La Salle was born into a noble French family in 1651 and through his study of literature and philosophy quickly developed a knowledge of the Christian religion which would lead him to priestly ordination at a very young age, receiving the tonsure at the age of eleven. He went to study theology at the Sorbonne and spent time at the seminary of Saint Sulpice in Paris until the death of his parents, when he returned home to educate his brothers eventually founding the “Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools” for the education of boys from economically-deprived families.