The mission of La Salle Retreat Center is to provide Lasallian spirit for faith and service communities in their search for spiritual and human goals.
La Salle Retreat Center is a place rooted in the Lasallian (Christian Brother) Tradition, supportive of spiritual and human development, promoting an inter-faith presence and religious tolerance, with a preference for youth and groups of lesser means.
We believe La Salle Center with its history, structures and landscape provides a uniquely positive environment for a reflective experience. A spirit of hospitality is an important part of our ministry.
The mission of La Salle Retreat Center is to create a warm, welcoming, and inspiring campus to all who come here to quiet their minds and nourish their spirit.
…a place where all guests experience Lasallian hospitality that is supportive and faith-driven.
…a place of peace where they can come to be close to God and to find renewed energy for daily living.
…a place that is conducive to reflective and spiritual activities…with its history as Holy Ground, its buildings that been a place of spiritual formation since 1886, and its many sacred grottos & labyrinth.
Oct. 1, 2013 La Salle Board Vision
It’s early September and the LaSalle retreat and conference center is starting its busiest season. For the next nine months the facility will be serving guests six out of seven days, with short recovery and housekeeping times. Local high schools are back in session and fall is approaching. The weather in St Louis this time of year is uncertain, to say the least. It can be 95 degrees and humid or clear, dry and cool, or stormy. In the fourth year of its five year facilities master plan the center is able to provide conditioned dormitory rooms to easily and efficiently accommodate an individual’s needs for sleeping temperatures, without having sacrificed the charm of the building.
On almost every Thursday for these 9 months there will be 40 to 50 men and/or women beginning a three night, four day retreat, accessing most of the 185 acres of grounds. The groups vary in need and size, but the facility is flexible enough to accommodate their individual needs. In addition to the larger retreats, the facility can host mini-overnight retreats utilizing a designated portion of the facility completely separated from other retreats that may be happening. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are filled with high school or college retreats as well. In addition to the faith based activity, the sports facilities are used by like-minded organizations such as the YMCA and CYC. Several weekends a year the center offers self-directed, dedicated programs. Through all this activity, the staff is often commended on their jobs. The meals achieve high ratings on variety, taste and service based on a menu with a good mix of comfort food and healthy choices, all freshly prepared. This is the result of the creativity of the chef, the dedication and teamwork of the staff and the efficiency of the kitchen, dishwashing and food service equipment. The grounds are well kept, with seasonal plantings creating an attractive environment at any time of year. Walking paths are accessible and safe for all. The grotto’s in particular are restored and maintained, with tours and literature available highlighting their beauty and spiritual importance.
Patrons, benefactors, guests, and neighbors are all well aware of what the LaSalle Retreat Center’s mission is and the role it plays in the community. All feel welcome to visit the grounds. Visitors are greeted by a staff member in the main business entrance with a kind word and welcoming attitude. They can sign in and schedule a guided group tour, visit the museum, or simply walk the grounds with guidance from one of the brochures describing the sites. At every turn there are reminders, in decorations, pictures, plaques and brochures of the men and women who, throughout the 125 plus year history, have shaped this Holy Ground. When met by staff, they get the feeling of welcome that comes from people who are models of faith and service in their roles. During weekends or non-business hours, guests can call the full time, live-in caretaker to notify him of their presence on the grounds. This presence of this person lends a sense of security to the resident brothers and overnight retreatants as well. This staffing allows the president to spend a substantial amount of time developing new business and being the face of LaSalle to the community.
Behind the outward appearance of comfort, welcome, and beauty is the strong backbone of buildings and systems. Updated and regularly maintained Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire protection and Roofing systems allow the center to reliably serve our guests.
The board, having grown substantially, plays an active, focused role in the success of the mission through strong committee work and regular, annual review of the long range strategic plan created as a result of the vision statement implemented in 2014.