To all Carmelites


#1

For a while, I have been discerning a vocation to the Carmelites (I am currently also looking at the Passionists, Redemptorists, and Oblates of the Virgin Mary). So I would like to know: Why did you choose the Discalced Carmelites over the Carmelites of the Ancient Observance (or vice versa)?


#2

Brother Byzantine can answer this question for you. Although I am just secular, I too, am confused that the o’carms are from the ancient observance when the discalced returned to the ancient observance because of much leniancy within the o’carms.:shrug:

Either/or God bless you on your journey and please be aware of my prayers!:slight_smile:


#3

What first drew me to the O.Carm. where a couple of friars that I knew. The more I met the more I liked the Order.

I also looked into the ministries and felt a good fit with all the available options.

I have to admit that I did not look into the OCD all that much.

I also liked the fact that the O.Carm. were founded in the East (one might argue that they are the most Eastern of all the Western Orders) and that the actual founder or founders are unknown.

Actually St Teresa thought she was returning to the ancient rule but really she returned to the first mitigation.

Also, the O.Carm,s pretty much followed the OCD with the Touraine Reform.


#4






Thank you! I am so blessed to be soaked by the carmelite charism. Although, i am so busy with homework, etc. Have a blessed night! :slight_smile:

Having been to Israel twice…if I do go again, Mount Carmel will have that much more meaning for me!:thumbsup:


#5

[quote="Mark1124, post:1, topic:254207"]
For a while, I have been discerning a vocation to the Carmelites (I am currently also looking at the Passionists, Redemptorists, and Oblates of the Virgin Mary). So I would like to know: Why did you choose the Discalced Carmelites over the Carmelites of the Ancient Observance (or vice versa)?

[/quote]

I am not a Carmelite YET. But I do plan on joining the OCDS, God willing. The third order of the Discalced Carmelites are Carmelites too (obviously) :)

I chose the Discalced Carmelites because of a lot of factors: I feel drawn to their spirituality, I like reading the works of the the Carmelite Saints, most of my favorite saints are Carmelites, there's a Discalced Carmelite Monastery in our city, my mom joined the OCDS and she's still an observer. :D


#6

[quote="Mark1124, post:1, topic:254207"]
Why did you choose the Discalced Carmelites over the Carmelites of the Ancient Observance (or vice versa)?

[/quote]

I first came into contact with Carmelite spirituality through the O.Carm community at Aylesford priory in Kent, England, which is the oldest working Carmel in the world (it was built in 1242) and predates the Teresian reform by 300 years. Since it was there that I began my journey towards religious life, it was to that province that I applied.

The two orders are good friends these days, and are seen as branches from the same tree, nourished by the same roots. We can claim being first, and they can claim three doctors of the church (technically, we could claim two of them back, inasmuch as Teresa and John were still O.Carms when they died :)). There isn't an unhealthy rivalry between the two groups of the family, and there are quite a few other expressions of the charism - most notably the Syro-Malabar rite Carmelites of Mary Immaculate in India, who are bigger than either the O.Carm or OCD orders.

I wouldn't want to generalise from my own experience too much, but I think that discernment is often about the heart rather than the head (they should be complementary rather than in conflict, in any event). In simple terms I fell in love with Carmel at a particular time and place, and so I pursued my vocation from that place.

This is why I think it's preferable to discern by meeting communities rather than by listening to secondhand opinions about which group is flavour of the month, or by making lists of demands that a religious institute must fulfil before you're willing to apply. When you meet religious people you like, you become willing and even eager to spend the rest of your life with them.

Best wishes.


#7

I visited Aylesford, England in 1997. At that time I was a member of the OCDS; in fact, I had made my First Promise earlier in the year.

I met members of the TOC group and sat in on their meeting. I was welcomed as a ‘sister Carmelite’. Very nice people!


#8

I joined Lay Carmelites (O.Carm.) because they had the only Carmelite community in the area. If there had been an OCDS community, I would probably have visited both communities.
As mentioned above, our spiritualities are very similar (though not necessarily identical). More than likely, I’d have felt comfortable in either branch.


#9

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