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Celebrating Brothers’ Profession of First Vows

Two Brothers of the Christian Schools, from the District of San Francisco New Orleans, Brothers Matthew Chiantella, FSC and Halen Gamino, FSC made first vows on July 23, 2023 during a Liturgy of First Profession celebrated at Mont La Salle, Napa, CA.

Brothers Matthew and Halen, their families, and SFNO Brothers and Partners gathered in De La Salle Chapel for the Liturgy, which included Mass and the vow ceremony.

The Liturgy began with Brother Christopher Brady, FSC giving the official welcome and RELAN Novitiate Director Brother Steven Vasoli, FSC delivering opening remarks to all those present, as well as to viewers of the YouTube livestream.

In his opening remarks, Brother Steven offered context for the day, noting its sacredness and describing the intense novitiate year Halen and Matthew had just completed, its many enriching and challenging activities all done, “for the sole purpose of becoming interior men, or as Saint John Baptist de La Salle wrote, to acquire the ‘spirit of faith essential for the life of a Brother of the Christian schools.’”

Brother Matthew Chiantella grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana and previously taught at De La Salle High School, New Orleans and Saint Mary’s College High School, Berkeley. He lived in the Saint Mary’s College High School community for Aspirancy and Postulancy. He is assigned to the San Miguel Brothers’ Community, Tucson, AZ, and will be the Director of Student Life at San Miguel High School.

Brother Halen Gamino grew up in Fresno, California, graduated from Saint Mary’s College of California and lived in the community at Cathedral High School, El Paso during his Aspirancy and Postulancy. Brother Halen is assigned to the Cathedral High School Brothers’ Community, Los Angeles, CA, and will teach math at Cathedral High School.

It has been a particular joy to walk with these two amazing Brothers and see them truly find belonging within the Brothers and the Lasallian family. I greatly look forward to the future with them in association for our Lasallian mission, both with the Brothers and our Partners.
– Brother David Caretti, FSC

After the Gospel, the Rite of Profession began with Brother Steven issuing the traditional Calling to profession to Brothers Matthew and Halen. After the Homily, SFNO Brother Visitor Nick Gonzalez led Brothers Matthew and Halen in the traditional Examination and Prayer for Grace. Brothers Matthew and Halen then each professed their vows, after which both received Brother Nick’s welcome and the applause of all present. The Mass continued to dismissal, after which a luncheon was held in the adjoining courtyard.

Brother David, who accompanied both Brothers Matthew and Halen through the early stages of their religious discernment and formation, shared, “Truly, as I look back, it has been a particular joy to walk with these two amazing Brothers and see them truly find belonging within the Brothers and the Lasallian Family. I greatly look forward to the future with them in association for our Lasallian Mission, both with the Brothers and our Partners.”

At the luncheon, Brothers Matthew and Halen we asked to share some of their thoughts on the day. Both Brothers’ remarks focused not on themselves, but instead gave moving tribute and gratitude to others.

“When I got to Saint Mary’s College,” Brother Halen recalled, “you (Brothers) invited me to share a meal with you. You became my Brothers. You’ve accompanied me ever since. Through prayer and invitation, God asked me if I could be a Brother like you. From that yes to another and to many more in the future, I know that you will accompany me and be Brother with me.”

Brother Matthew offered, “I am surrounded by family and friends and Brothers who put love and care first. To everyone here who has been with me on this journey, from De La Salle New Orleans to Saint Mary’s College High School, you have been and continue to be a gift for me on this incredible faith journey. I truly believe we are reflecting God’s generous love to one another.”

At the close of the luncheon, Brother Nick reminded all present that the day had been one not only of reaching milestones but also of setting out on new beginnings , saying, “We will all commit ourselves to continue to pray for you and to encourage you on this journey.”

Adapted from original post – DeLaSalle.org

Additional Content

View Liturgy of First Profession Livestream Recording

Br. Matthew and Br. Halen Remarks from Luncheon Following Liturgy

Liturgy of First Profession and Vow Profession Worship Aid