The Lasallian family celebrates the feast day of St. Jean Baptiste de La Salle or St. John Baptist de La Salle, recognized as the universal patron saint of teachers every May 15.
Life and Journey
St. Jean Baptiste de La Salle, known as the patron of all teachers of youth and the founder of De La Salle University, died April 7, 1719. The Catholic Church celebrates the feast of St. La Salle on the anniversary of his death.
De La Salle was canonized a saint of the Catholic Church on May 24, 1900 and proclaimed patron of all teachers of youth by Pope Pius XII on May 15, 1950. Lasallians celebrate May 15 as Founder’s Day.
St. La Salle’s untiring faith and zeal inspired a modest revolution in Christian education in his day and continue to stir the hearts of educators everywhere. During De La Salle’s time, few people lived in luxury, instead most were extremely poor.
Very few could afford to send their children to school. In his pursuit of providing a practical, Christian education to the young, especially the poor, De La Salle left his home, gave up his wealth, renounced his position as a Canon, and moved in with teachers, which formed the Brothers of the Christian Schools. De La Salle’s tuition-free schools welcomed all students, regardless of social standing. He provided free education as a way to liberate the poor and give them hope for the future.
- Born at Reims, France April 30, 1651
- Ordained priest April 9, 1678
- Died April 7, 1719
- Beatified February 19, 1888
- Canonized May 24, 1900
- Proclaimed Patron of Christian Teachers May 15, 1950