On the evening of November 26, 2015, Brothers, local government officials and members of the community, gathered together to celebrate the dedication of the new Saint-Michel Lasallian Center in Montréal, Quebec.
The idea for the center originated in 2004, after neighborhoods in Montréal’s Saint-Michel district were identified to be among the most densely populated in the city, while at the same time being home to a large number of underserved family and youth.
During the 2008 District Chapter, seven Brothers, helped by devoted lay Partners gave birth to the concept of the center in (often difficult) circumstances. The center has already acquired an enviable reputation and it is precisely this vitality of the work as well as the hope for a better future for youth in Saint-Michel, which guided the Brothers towards the construction of the new Lasallian Center, which officially opened last month.
Brother Louis-Paul Lavallée, FSC, Visitor of the Francophone Canada District, remarked, “May this bud of hope bear the fruit desired thanks to the quality of its educational community, focused on the home team respect, love of others and mutual assistance beyond the differences of race, culture, belief and religion!”
Also present, was Frantz Benjamin, city councilor of the Saint-Michel district, who shared with the attendees both his belief that the opening of the center was a ”dream come true” and that he had an enduring commitment to the further development of the facility and the programs it houses.
Denis de Villers, president of the Board of Directors of the Center, expressed the desire of the Council to continue to make the Saint-Michel Lasallian Center a place with a family environment in which every young person feels at home, a special place where they are known and recognized, and a place where they will be able develop their talents and be inspired by passionate educators.
Special thanks to Denis de Villers for his contribution to this article.