Q: How Is A Brother Different From A Priest?
A: Brothers are men who chose to answer the call to live together communally and work with God’s people through various ministries. Brothers are not ordained and we do not say Mass; nor do we administer the Sacraments any more than any baptized lay person would. Living as a Christian Brother is a life-long vocation.
Q: What Are the Three Vows and Why Do You Take Them?
A: We publicly profess vows of chastity, poverty, and obedience. Chastity encourages us to work within the community and share our capacity for love in a much broader arena. Poverty allows us to live a simple lifestyle and stand in solidarity with the people we work among. Obedience frees us to respond to and move with the Spirit.
Q: How Long Does it Take to Become a Brother?
A: Becoming a Brother is a life-long process. Typically, it takes about five years before a man takes his first vows.
Q: If I Become a Christian Brother, How Might I Serve God?
A: Our primary ministry is the evangelization of youth within the mission of the Church. This can take many forms. Brothers are involved in teaching, youth ministry, adult education and many other ministries that bring us into contact with Christ present in the world. We do this in association with many others who share the spirit of our founder, Blessed Edmund Rice.
Q: As a Brother, Where Would I Serve?
A: Brothers serve throughout the world. A Brother’s particular ministry is determined through a process of discernment involving the Brother and the leadership team. We also have a number of our Brothers serving overseas in other regions of the Congregation, assisting in those efforts to spread the Gospel message. Today, there is a strong emphasis on the internationality of our Congregation.
Q: Why Do the Christian Brothers Live in Community?
A: Brotherhood in community is a principal source of our companionship and a privileged context for our personal growth. Our personalities develop as each of us accepts responsibility to make a unique contribution to the life and mission of the community. It is from community that we carry our gifts to others. We in turn are enriched as the lives of others touch our own. It is our principal means of evangelization.
Q: What Role Does Community Prayer Play?
A: In our mission of evangelization, revealing, and discovering anew our God, we need the constant support of community prayer. Living in true Brotherhood, we see such prayer together as central to our life and mission, as we allow the Word of God to shed light on our local situation and on the world beyond.
Q: Are There Requirements for Being a Christian Brother?
A: The Christian Brothers require that a man be a high school graduate before being able to enter into the Contact Program of Brothers’ Initial Formation.