INTRODUCTION

"Association": a term with a specific meaning in the Lasallian environment.

 Lasallian Association is a result, not of a contract, but of the communion of people animated by the Lasallian charisma and committed to the educational service of the poor. When trying to define this term -"Association"- in the Lasallian context we must underline the essential components which integrate its meaning and make it different from its current use in present culture: communion, Lasallian charism3 commitment, mission (understood as educational service to the poor)

In the historical evolution of the Lasallian Association we can identify three phases characterized by the entry of people who live those four essential components of the Association in a different way. Each phase is preceded by a crisis which is overcome at the point i.e. the threshold in which the new phase starts. In each phase a sociological model, in which Association works, is built up.