Secular Order of Discalced Carmelites - Membership

Membership

Depending on their existing provincial statutes and with the approval of their local council, their communities accept Catholics in good standing in the Church who are at least 18 years old for entry into formation. Admission into formation depends on a clear indication of a Carmelite vocation and maturity in faith as discerned by the local council of the community petitioned, and permission to profess the Promise of the Seculars requires a number of years spent in spiritual formation and the study of contemplative prayer under the direction of the community's formators. Catholics called to this vocation by God begin by discovering a community of Seculars which they visit for monthly meetings and may eventually join. Communities are listed in online provincial directories (see bibliography below).

Seculars are not members of the Scapular Confraternity, a newer development that is merely a pious association of Catholics who wear the small Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, commonly known as the Brown Scapular, and may or may not practice the primary principles of Carmelite spirituality. Any Catholic can be invested with the Carmelite Scapular by a Catholic priest, and indeed it is the most popular of Catholic scapulars because of the special promises made to its wearers by the Blessed Virgin Mary in apparitions. But the garment is properly the habit of the Discalced Carmelite Order, including the Seculars. Candidates for admission to the Order are clothed in the Scapular at the beginning of formal formation, usually during a Mass.

Seculars, after the tradition of the Friars and Nuns, take a religious name and title of devotion. The custom is increasing of retaining the person's surname and/or given name depending on suitability. The name taken is generally only used in Carmelite contexts, and members use the acronym "OCDS" after their legal names if appropriate.

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Famous quotes containing the word membership:

    The two real political parties in America are the Winners and the Losers. The people don’t acknowledge this. They claim membership in two imaginary parties, the Republicans and the Democrats, instead.
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