Through the Schools of Life, the Brothers of Saint John offer young people the opportunity to address the ever-present question in their lives of what it is they are called to.
Each year young people aged 18-30 choose to take some time out in order to deepen their lives on a human and Christian level by joining a School of Life run by the Brothers. The Schools of Life are located in Saint-Quentin-sur-Indrois in France, Cebu in the Philippines and Addis Ababa in Ethiopia.
Through formation, prayer, fraternal life and mission, the School of Life offers an experience that helps young people to form and strengthen themselves on both the human and the Christian level, whatever they may go on to choose to do in life.
Saint John the Baptist School of Life in Saint-Quentin-sur-Indrois, France
The School of Life attached to the priory of Saint Quentin sur Indrois (Département 37), in the diocese of Tours, was inaugurated in 1992. Every year young people aged between 18 and 30 come and spend nine months alongside the priory to benefit from the formation on offer and to deepen their lives on both the Christian and the human level.
Through philosophical and theological teaching, reading the Word of God, a life of prayer and witness to other young people, as well as concrete participation in the task of running the house, young people are given the possibility to grow in their relationship with Christ and with other people.
The School of Life starts on the 1st October and finishes on the 1st July.
The School of Life in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Created in 2013, the School of Life in Addis Ababa offers young Ethiopians from different social and ethnic backgrounds the opportunity for nine months of reflection and engagement in order to shed light on the question, ‘What does God want of me?’
The purpose, or finality, of the School of Life is to help young people, through vocational discernment in the broad sense of the term, to hear God’s call and to respond to it.
This School of Life is slightly different from the others in that it offers two levels of participation. Some people come only for the weekends whereas others stay in the priory full-time. Many different activities are organised: ministry to disadvantaged children and young people from the countryside, service to the community and to one another, times of prayer and praise, English language classes, instruction in the faith, etc.
The School of Life in Cebu – the Philippines
Life today increasingly seems like a mad race that we have to run as fast as we possibly can – one consequence of which is the increased possibility of having an accident or messing things up. So why not spend six months preparing for life and laying a good foundation for the future in one of our Schools of Life?
In 2017 nine young people responded with a ‘Yes!’. In the photo below you can see them proudly displaying the t-shirts designed by one of the group. They had just received a special blessing at the end of the Mass to mark their completion of the School of Life, during which they had experienced six months of mission, formation, fraternity and prayer.