Enrollment in the Brown Scapular

For the past several years I have been wearing the brown scapular. I forget how I first found about it, but was enamored by the history and devotion. The other day I was listening to CAL, and Jimmy (I think) was talking about how to be enrolled in the brown scapular.

From what I understand I need to find a Carmelite and ask to be enrolled. Failing that, my parish priest could do it. Who else has done one of those two steps? What can you tell me?

Originally only Carmelita priest had the faculty to bless the brown scapular and enroll one; this faculty was extended to any priest a while ago

Here is the formula


the sprinkling with holy water is not essential. Print out the formula, and approach a priest with the scapular after Mass, he will enroll you.

According to the Sisters of Carmel’s website (sistersofcarmel.com/brown-scapular-information.php), one of the possible requirements (there are a few options) in order to obtain the Sabbatine Privilege is to abstain from meat on Wednesdays and Saturdays as well as fasting and abstaining on the appropriate Holy Days. I was under the impression that it was for Wednesdays and Fridays (considering the former mandatory abstention from meat for all Catholics on Fridays). Can anyone clarify this?

As far as I remember the website is correct. The abstinence was required above the law. On that good old times, before the refrigerators and freezers, this was not so hard requirement, people usually eat meat only on Sundays. Look for the OR-s

Recite daily the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin OR Observe the fasts of the Church together with abstaining from meat on Wednesdays and Saturdays OR With permission of a priest, say five decades of Our Lady’s Most Holy Rosary OR With permission of a priest, substitute some other good work.

When I made my First Communion in the second grade, we were all given the Brown Scapular also. Boys got brown string, girls got white string. Was it common practice to be enrolled along with receiving First Communion? Seeing as I’m 42 now, I can’t remember the particulars of the ceremony.

Thank you for the explanation.

hmmm…read that those who wear the scapular and pray the rosary devotly shall not suffer the pains of hell and have the intercessions of our Lady to deliver souls from purgatory ?

I recently showed my pastor the same version of blessing and enrollment of the Scapular as on the sister’s website. He said that he would like to do it in the short form
(Receive this Scapular, a sign of your special relationship with Mary, the Mother of Jesus, whom you pledge to imitate. By the Scapular, you enter the spiritual family of the Order of the Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel. Wear it worthily so that, with the help of the Virgin Mary, you may be clothed with Christ Jesus and show Him to be alive in you for the spiritual benefit of the Catholic Church and all of humanity. Amen). Several months ago, Father gave my scapular what sounded a “standard” clerical blessing. I was wondering if this brief version (on the Carmelite pamphlet that came with my scapular, it says that it is “an approved short form for giving the Scapular.”) or such a blessing are really valid.

I was told that any priest could enroll a person into the brown scapular… it used to be only the Carmelite priests could, but now it’s any priest. Where did you hear that it needs to be a Carmelite? :confused:

My priest told me I could say the 5 decades of the Rosary :slight_smile:

if we do this, Our Lady will help us to persevere… but this does not replace the Sacraments of course, it’s nothing ‘magical’ :slight_smile: it’s an outward sign of a consecration to Mary

all that is needed I think is the enrollment prayer… if the short form is formally approved, then it is valid ? My priest said the whole thing in Latin and also blessed the medals on my scapular so I’m not really sure what exactly he said :stuck_out_tongue:

Okay. Thank you for explaining that. I was just confused between the different versions and as to whether the blessing has to be “by the book.”

Can a deacon enroll you?

Here is a site that has the last catechesis on the Brown Scapular from the two branches of the Carmelite Order. This was written in the year 2000.


Nope, has to be a priest. According to this website, any priest can.

Wrong. Read the link in Dorothy’s post just prior to yours. Your link
doesn’t address deacons; and that does not mean deacons cannot bless; it only means that priests can.

What is not mentioned does not automatically mean that by not mentioning it, it is excluded.

It’s not a good idea to take any information from the Sisters of Carmel website. The Sisters are a renegade independent order. Masses for the sisters are celebrated by priests from Servants of the Holy Family, who are schismatic.

If you look at the Sisters of Carmel website very carefully, you will find no mention of approval by the Holy Father, the Archdiocese or the Carmelite Order.

A letter written by the bishop in 2004 used to be on the Archdiocese of Colorado Springs website. When the website was redesigned a couple of years ago, the letter didn’t make it into the new design. The letter, more or less said , the groups (the sisters, and the priests from Servants of the Holy Family) were not in communion with the Archdiocese or Rome. The letter asked the faithful to pray for a peaceful resolution.

I live in a neighboring Archdiocese, we monitor the situation very carefully, and pray for them to come back.

It is no longer required to be enrolled.

If a person wears the scapular, but has no formal association to the Order, does that person still gain the benefits associated with the scapular?
A person who wears the scapular and practices the spirituality of the Carmelite Order has an affiliation, loose as it may be, to the Carmelite family and so shares in the graces traditionally associated with the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. However, simply to wear the scapular without accepting the responsibilities attached to it would be to reduce this precious sacramental to the status of a charm or good-luck piece.


If you do want to use the ritual it is here:


Thank you for that information. It is helpful to know these things!

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.