A Carmelite Sister's collection of topics, reflections, photos and links
Sister, this is why I'm scared of religious life..I have an aunt at home who who was 'sent' to a convent, left, and is not mentally stable since then. She lives with us. I would love to enter religious life if I hear a clear 'Yes' from God. But entering and leaving after a few years terrifies me as I would be a burden to others if I returned and finding a job isn't easy. This is in a country where single women can hardly live at peace, the 'marriageable age' for girls is not more then 26 and very few Catholics see religious life as a choice. It's just 'marriage' everywhere.Coming from a family where 2 aunts were 'sent' to the convent due to poverty, as they couldn't afford education, and both had bad experiences, making a decision seems very difficult. Though I strongly wish I could become a nun, I wonder if it is possible.
First of all, nobody should be "sent" to a convent. That maybe the case in the old days and was the case among many. The new reform of religious life now emphasizes the fact that religious life is first and foremost a vocation, a calling, and what one does is to respond. So I'm not surprised that the grace was not there. Know that I'm sorry about your aunt's condition.Why will you be afraid to respond to what you are sure to be a religious call? Life is full of uncertainties. Nothing in life is certain so you cannot make the argument that you are afraid of failing. I marriage certain? Is our health certain? Is any job certain? Is life certain? No. Everything is a leap of faith. I would suggest that you ask God to give you the will to act on what you feel you should do. Faith is a gift received and a gift given back to God. Religious life is also a gift. It is not necessary for salvation. You do not have to be a religious to be saved. But God calls us to a state where he has prepared graces prepared for us. If he gives one a call to one state, it is because that is the place one will be most happy.
Sister can you tell me if it's acceptable for a person enrolled in the Scapular Confraternity to call themselves a 'Carmelite'?If not, how are they regarded and how should they describe their association with carmelites?Thank you and God bless you.
Here is the published statement from the Catechesis on the Brown Scapular: "The Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel is the common habit of all branches of the Carmelite Family and a sign of unity of that family. For that reason the Scapular Confraternity and similar associations of the faithful centering around this sacramental belong not to any one branch of Carmel but to the entire Carmelite family. Thus, there is only one common public association of the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel."
In the Brigittine Rosary, what is the first mystery for the Luminous Mysteries?
"The Hidden Life at Nazareth."
Thank you! One more question, though. I have been trying to find a six decade rosary, but can't seem to locate any. Do you know where they are available or do I need to make one?
You can contact the Carmelites in Flemington, New Jersey. They have a small gift shop and that is where I bought my six decade rosary. You can ask them for more information about the rosary too. They might have literature for you. Here is their website: http://www.flemingtoncarmel.org/Page%205.html
Wonderful! I will be sure to contact them! Thank you for all of your help!
I first want to thank you for answering all of my questions! God has put a considerable calling on my heart to join the OCDS. I have a great spiritual as well as physical connection to St. Teresa of Jesus. My birthday is the Feast of her Transverberation. I was born with holes in my heart. The doctors thought those holes would disappear before I reached adulthood, but I still have them. They are the physical evidence of my spiritual connection. I also have a strong connection with St. Terese of Lisieux. I was baptized on her feast day and I have always tried to follow God's lead with child-like trust. This brings me to my next question. Would it be appropriate to add to the beginning of the Brigittine Rosary (said in the Carmelite Tradition) after the Sign of the Cross the Prayer to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel, Flower of Carmel, and Prayer for the Transverberation of St. Teresa? I would like to pray those to contemplate my calling into the Carmelite Family. Should those prayers be prayed separate from the rosary or is it okay to add them?
I would pray them separate from the Rosary.
In bible study we covered the saints personalities Dones and imperfections.there was a lot of children distracting the class..but the sister advised that we diacover which saint personality/ characteristic we were most like so we can identify our imperfections and work on them.. i have reaserched but have come up empty..
I know what you mean. Sometimes when we read the lives of Saints, we get the impression that they were Saints from the cradle! That was the old way hagiographers (those who write the Saints biographies) wrote them. Now, just like what the Sister said, we like to see their weaknesses and imperfections so we can relate to them and discover how they overcome these imperfections/ or how they dealt with them. Saint Therese was not afraid of her imperfections. She said that instead of trying to be great, we should love our littleness and imperfections because they keep us humble and remind us that we are all in need of God's mercy! What personality traits or characteristics are you looking for?
Thank you.i guess the best way to identify with a saints personality/ characteristic is to read up on them :)
Where could I get a copy of a picture of the statue of Our Lady of Mt Carmelpictured on the Second Day of the Novena ??It's BEAUTIFUL !!!Thank you for any information you may have.
The photo is of the statue we have in our Motherhouse Chapel. We may have some feast day cards in our gift shop using the same photo. Send me a private message of the address I can send it to.
Sister, did you receive my message regarding this ?I may not have done it right.Thanks !
Sister, I am writing to try to get some clarification on how to pray the Brigittine rosary. I found the link on a website that stated:The Brigittine Rosary consists of 6 decades of 10 beads each. There are 3 additional beads at the end. Each decade consists of 1 Our Father, 10 Hail Marys. The Apostle's Creed is said on the crucifix. The 63 Hail Mary's are in remembrance of the 63 years of Mary'searthly life according to one traditional account. The 7 Our Fathers,said on the large beads between each decade, are in remembrance of theSeven Sorrows and Seven Joys of the Blessed Virgin.My questions are as follows:1. Does the Brigittine rosary start with the sign of the cross and the Apostles Creed on the crucifix?2. Is the Our Father said on the first bead of the above the crucifix as in the Dominican rosary?3. Are the first three small beads Hail Marys as in the Dominican Rosary?4. Is the Glory Be or the Apostles Creed said before the first Our Father bead of the first mystery?5. Is the Hail Holy Queen said after the final Apostles Creed of the final decade or is there some other method to end the rosary?Any clarification you could provide or recommendations you could make as to where I can find these answers would be appreciated. Thank you in advance.
Are there video recordings of Celine?
Nothing that I am aware of and nothing that is contained in our Carmelite libraries. Celine died in 1959. Video recording technology was developed in 1951 according to Wikipedia. I doubt the Carmel of Lisieux would have acquired it because of the law of enclosure. Others who may have more information on this can answer your question. Thanks for visiting the site!
Re: NadaWhen all is dark, what is the motivation to move on to Mount Carmel?
We are called to be people of hope. The darkness is a way to a purified life. According to the Carmelite tradition, God is darkness to the senses. The motivation is love even in darkness.
hi i was wondering what age you have to be to enter do you know
We look at applicants ages 18-40 .
Are you actually living on mt carmel?
No. I live in our Carmelite convent in Germantown, New York with my religious community.
Is it ok to excercise every day while listening to christian radio, ?
I apologize for this late reply. There is nothing wrong with doing both. If listening to the radio raises your mind and heart to God, even when exercising, that is wonderful!
Is there a St. Celine? I have been seeking info as a possible Confirmation name.
I found this article for you about Saint Celine from Catholic Online: "We have very few details about the life of this saint who is best known as the mother of St. Remigius, Bishop of Rheims at the time of the conversion of the people of Gaul under Clovis. St. Celine miraculously gave birth to St. Remigius when she was already at an advanced age. Immediately after giving birth, about 438, she also gave sight to the hermit Montanus who had three times foretold the birth of the saintly Bishop. After a holy life filled with good works and assiduous prayer, this saintly woman attained the rewards of heaven about the year 458. She was buried near Lyons, probably at Cerny, where she had lived. Unfortunately her relics were destroyed during the French Revolution." http://www.catholic.org/saints/saint.php?saint_id=563
Do we have to be a virgin to be a nun? Say a woman who had had sex/masturbate when she was young, realized later in life, or felt later in life, that she was called to consecrate her life to Christ, what could she do then? Would that just be a case of “missing your calling”?
There are nuns who were married and have had children. After being widowed they discover a religious vocation and entered religious life. Whether we become nuns or not, the actions you have described are objectively sinful and should be brought to Confession. Nuns are not perfect people. We are always in need of God's forgiveness and healing.
Absolutely wonderful site. Thanks for all the time and love you put into it. Can I ask what blog software you use? Oh, and under "Saints of Carmel", don't forget to bump up our beloved Elizabeth to "Saint" on Oct. 16th.
Sister, can you tell me what page of this book discusses the Brigittine Rosary?: Fr. Kevin, OCD, Way of Perfection for the Laity (Dublin: M.J. Gill & Son)
I am not familiar with that book. I may have addressed the Brigittine Rosary in one on the questions above.
Sister I am one of the devotee of St. Elizabeth of the Trinity. I just like to ask you if there is a recognized or approved novena prayer though her intercession after her canonization? Thank you.