The halls of Mont La Salle are echoing with young voices and laughter as four Christian Brother Novices return to classes after Christmas break. Brothers Roberto Martinez, Patrick Martin, Anthony Elfering and David Deradoorian received their religious habits last summer and began their Novitiate year in Napa on August 11.
After a year in which there were no Novices at Mont La Salle, the four young men are embracing their studies and forming strong bonds. The Brothers Vocation facebook page shows them in class and enjoying their free time on the Napa campus. “They all take advantage of the gym, the pool and the ample acreage for walking and hiking,” says Director Brother Kevin Slate.
An average school day for the Novices includes four core courses : Liturgy, Community Life and the Rule, Scripture and The Life of the Founder. The men also get independent study time to pursue areas of interest they might not otherwise have time for, and they each pick a spiritual director to help guide them through their journey.
Brother Kevin says the young men are kind and thoughtful. “Thoughtful in their serious approach to their Novitiate studies and in their pursuit of a deeper personal spiritual life as young Brothers.”
After completing their Novice year, the men go on to work in their districts of origin. Brothers Roberto and Patrick are from the San Francisco District, Brother Anthony is from the Midwest and Brother David is from the District of Eastern North America headquartered in New Jersey.
In March the Novices will travel to the Religious Education Congress in Anaheim, where they’ll be vocational ambassadors to teachers and students from around the world. Their calling is clear. In the words of Saint John Baptist de La Salle, they are engaged in a ministry in which they are “obliged to touch hearts.”