Brother John Johnston, FSC, M.A.
This is a portion of Pastoral Letter: The Defense of Children, the Reign of God, and the Lasallian Mission (Rome, 1999), which was written by Brother John Johnston when he was superior general of the Brothers of the Christian Schools (pages 11-23, 40-42, 44-46, and 57-61). This is a challenge and an appeal in the defense of children. It is presented as a matter of justice that needs to be a new focus for Lasallian mission in the 21st century. The situation of poor children in today’s world is an unspeakable scandal, and Lasallians are invited to be in the vanguard of the struggle for justice for young people whose rights are being violated.
Keywords: rights of the child, poverty, street children, abuse, illiteracy, child labor, violence, justice, solidarity, social doctrine of the Catholic Church, heralds of human dignity
John Johnston, FSC, M.A.
On October 11, 2007, Brother John Johnston died in his home city of Memphis, Tennessee, USA. During a period of 24 years, from 1976 to 2000, he served as Vicar General and then Superior General, leading the Institute through difficult, exciting and challenging times. He championed authenticity in the lives of Brothers and encouraged the sharing of the Lasallian Mission by Lasallian partners and provoked the Lasallian family into reflecting on global issues such as the Rights of Children and Literacy. In the words of Brother Vincent Malham, we honor Brother John best in remembering him as a faithful disciple of Jesus who “drank the cup.”