Marianist Characteristics and Native Hawaiian Values

Blessed William Joseph Chaminade, founder of the Marianist family, said, “By educating the mind and the heart, the school can form people who in turn can work at changing the very structures of their society to ensure a community of justice and reconciliation.”

Education is an integral value in both Marianist and Native Hawaiian culture. Both recognize the transformative effect of a well-rounded, value-centered education on society, particularly in seeking justice for the marginalized, the forgotten, and the oppressed, always with an eye toward God (Ke Akua). This is reflected in the ‘Olelo No’eau (Hawaiian proverbs) and Marianist core beliefs:

‘Ōlelo No’eau

Educate for Formation in Faith

E ola au i ke akua
(ʻŌlelo Noʻeau 364)
May I live by God

Provide an Integral, Quality Education

Lawe i ka maʻalea a kūʻonoʻono
(ʻŌlelo Noʻeau 1957)
Acquire skill and make it deep

Educate in Family Spirit

ʻIke aku, ʻike mai, kōkua aku kōkua mai; pela iho la ka nohana ʻohana
(‘Ōlelo Noʻeau 1200)
Recognize others, be recognized, help others, be helped; such is a family relationship

Educate for Service, Justice and Peace

Ka lama kū o ka noʻeau
(ʻŌlelo Noʻeau 1430)
Education is the standing torch of wisdom

Educate for Adaptation and Change

ʻAʻohe pau ka ‘ike i ka hālau hoʻokahi
(ʻŌlelo Noʻeau 203)
All knowledge is not taught in the same school

Observations

When Marianist characteristics and Native Hawaiian cultural values are woven together, we see that:

  • The root culture of Hawai’i and Marianist culture are equally valuable and worthy.
  • Hawaiian and Marianist communities seek justice for the marginalized, including Native Hawaiians, the forgotten and the oppressed.
  • God is magnified, as we work together for common good through education and beyond.
  • Chaminade University and Native Hawaiian communities can speak from a place of shared understanding.