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November 20, 2009

Brother Alvaro Rodriquez Echeverria, F.S.C.,
Superior General of the Christian Brothers,
to Visit La Salle University

La Salle University will host a three-day visit with Brother Alvaro Rodriguez Echeverria, F.S.C., Superior General of the Christian Brothers. During his visit, Br. Alvaro will meet with various members of the La Salle community, including students, faculty, alumni, and board of trustee members. He will be discussing “Education for justice should not merely be a specific subject area but a common thread that runs through the whole curriculum,” one of the central themes of his 2006 pastoral letter.

He will also participate in two ceremonies at La Salle: one in which Raymond Ricci, a former Vice President for Enrollment Services and currently Assistant to the President for the Office of Mission Integration, will be named an Affiliate Christian Brother, and a second for the Rededication of the International Lasallian Resource Center at the Connelly Library.

Br. Alvaro was named Superior General of the Christian Brothers in 2000, becoming the 26th leader of the order founded in the 17th century by St. John Baptist de La Salle, the patron saint of teachers. Based in Rome, Br. Alvaro holds the highest office of the Christian Brothers, whose 6,000 Brothers and 100,000 lay people teach more than 1 million students in schools, colleges, and universities in 82 countries worldwide.

Born in Costa Rica, Br. Alvaro graduated from Universidad La Salle Mexico. He then joined the Central American District of the Christian Brothers and later professed his perpetual vows. He began his career in education as a teacher and mentor in Mexico and Guatemala for eight years. In addition to serving as a teacher and administrator, Br. Alvaro is a former auxiliary visitor for the District of Central America and Vicar General.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Br. Alvaro worked in Guatemala and Nicaragua during a period when there was an undeclared war between the notorious Death Squads and the ordinary people of those countries, resulting in thousands of deaths. As a teacher, Br. Alvaro personally experienced the violence and underlying tensions of these difficult years for the Brothers, their students, and families.

Since being named Superior General, Br. Alvaro has made two previous visits to La Salle University. In July, he participated in the International Association of Lasallian Universities (IALU) conference, hosted by the University. In addition, he was awarded an honorary degree at La Salle’s Commencement ceremony in 2001.