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Letter to Malala Yousafzai, 2014 Nobel Peace Award

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October 30, 2014

malala-yousafzai-time-100-feat-150x150MESSAGES - Dear Malala Yousufzai:

The Brothers of the Christian Schools, together with more than 86,000 Lasallian educators and one million Lasallian students who participate in our worldwide educational communities, would like to congratulate you for the 2014 Nobel Peace Award.

In a special way, we join the educators and the students of our four centers in Pakistan: Faisalabad, Karachi, Multan and Khushpur. On their behalf, we want to thank you for the priceless testimony of your life.

We were inspired by the message you proclaimed at the United Nations. It is clear to us that the bullets of the Taliban only served to make your voice clearly resound around the world. Those who wanted to silence you only impelled you to challenge all of us to join in the defense of the right of all children to education.

In your words, in your life and through by forgiving your enemies, we not only recognize an intelligent student, but also a great person and a wise teacher. You remind us that every teacher has to learn to listen to his students and learn from them.

We agree with you that the pen is mightier than the sword; that’s why we work so hard to help our students to become informed and responsible men and women in solidarity with their brothers and sisters.

We also concur that one child, one teacher, one pen and one book can change the world and that education is the only solution. Yes, education comes first.

We, too, know that illiteracy is one of the worst manifestations of poverty and we want to join you and all people of good will who fight the global fight against illiteracy, poverty and terrorism.

In 1990 the Institute of the Brothers of the Christian Schools received UNESCO’s NOMA prize for the work we do in the field of literacy.  However, there is still much to do.  According to UNESCO, 75 million children still do not have access to education.

As you remind us, Islam states that education is not only the right of every child but also their duty and responsibility. The Bible teaches us that Jesus particularly loved children and that whatever we do to one of them we do it Him; that is why we strive to see every child as our brother and sister whom God has entrusted to our care.

In the name of the compassionate and gracious God, we promise that we will continue to defend the Rights of the Child and particularly the Right to Education.

For over 300 years, our Institute has been dedicated to the human and Christian education of children and young people.  We instill in our students a profound respect for their own culture, religious faith and social values.   We also motivate them to be respectful of the cultures, faiths and values of other peoples.

Malala, we share your dream and we stand with you. Your message has given us renewed courage to zealously fulfill our mission of Christian education.

Fraternally,

Brother Robert Schieler, FSC
Superior General

Source: LaSalle.org, October 17, 2014

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