‘An honor’: La Salle Priest reflects on affiliation to Christian Brothers

June 15, 2023
Father Francis Berna, AFSC, celebrates Baccalaureate Mass on May 12, 2023.

Father Frank Berna received this formal recognition and acknowledgement at a ceremony at St. Joseph’s Chapel.  

One member of the La Salle University community received a special honor from the Christian Brothers. 

Father Francis Berna, AFSC, also known as Father Frank to Explorers officially received his affiliation to the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools last year.  

Affiliation is a formal recognition and acknowledgement by the Institute to those who have supported the Brothers in their work, not only through outstanding gifts and services, but also through a professional, personal and fraternal relationship. Through the presentation of the Letters of Affiliation, the Brothers welcome and celebrate affiliates as honorary members of the Institute. Those affiliated use AFSC after their name like the Brothers’ FSC.  

Those affiliated can be buried in the Brothers cemetery, among other privileges. 

The association was given during a ceremony at St. Joseph’s Chapel.  

“It’s meant to be an honor and certainly was an honor to me,” he said. 

Father Frank has a close working relationship with the Christian Brothers through his time at Lasallian institutions. Not only is he a faculty member in the Religion Department, but he assists the Brothers through celebrating Mass on campus and at retreats.  

He’s also learned a lot from the Brothers in the classroom. Father Frank said he gets to know more members of the La Salle community through his teaching and he and the Christian Brothers have discussed ways to better serve students over the years.  

“It’s really been a privilege to work with the brothers because they’re very good teachers,” he said.  

This recognition brings Father Frank’s connection to the Brothers back to his family as his grandfather was a podiatrist to Brothers in Philadelphia and his uncle is a La Salle alumnus. 

“It’s a neat family connection and a full circle moment to receive this honor,” he said.  

—Meg Ryan