16 July: Solemn Commemoration of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

July 16
SOLEMN COMMEMORATION OF OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL

Solemnity

The sacred scriptures speak of the beauty of Mount Carmel where the prophet Elijah defended the faith of Israel in the living God. There, at the beginning of the thirteenth century, under the title of “Saint Mary of Mount Carmel,” the Order of Carmelites had its formal beginning. From the fourteenth century this title, recalling the countless blessings of its patroness, began to be celebrated solemnly, first in England and then gradually throughout the whole Order. It attained its supreme place from the beginning of the seventeenth century, when the General Chapter declared it to be the principal feast of the Order, and Paul V recognized it as the feast of the Scapular Confraternity.

Evening Prayer I

Hymn

Flower of Carmel,
Tall vine blossom laden;
Splendor of heaven,
Child-bearing yet maiden.
None equals thee.

Mother so tender,
Who no man didst know,
On Carmel’s children
Thy favors bestow.
Star of the Sea.

Strong stem of Jesse,
Who bore one bright flower,
Be ever near us
And guard us each hour,
who serve thee here.

Purest of lilies,
That flowers among thorns,
Bring help to the true heart
That in weakness turns
and trusts in thee.

Strongest of armor,
We trust in thy might:
Under thy mantle,
Hard press’d in the fight,
we call to thee.

Our way uncertain,
Surrounded by foes,
Unfailing counsel
You give to those
who turn to thee.

O gentle Mother
Who in Carmel reigns,
Share with your servants
That gladness you gained
and now enjoy.

Hail, Gate of Heaven,
With glory now crowned,
Bring us to safety
Where thy Son is found,
true joy to see.

Flos Carmeli
Tr. unknown

Psalmody

Ant. 1 The glory of Lebanon is given to her, the beauty of Carmel and Sharon.

Psalm 113

Praise, O servants of the Lord, *
praise the name of the Lord!
May the name of the Lord be blessed *
both now and for evermore!
From the rising of the sun to its setting *
praised be the name of the Lord!

High above all nations is the Lord, *
above the heavens his glory.
Who is like the Lord, our God, *
who has risen on high to his throne *
yet stoops from the heights to look down, *
to look down upon heaven and earth?

From the dust he lifts up the lowly, *
from his misery he raises the poor
to set him in the company of princes, *
yes, with the princes of his people.
To the childless wife he gives a home *
and gladdens her heart with children.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. The glory of Lebanon is given to her, the beauty of Carmel and Sharon.

Ant. 2 You are the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the highest honor of our race.

Psalm 147

O praise the Lord, Jerusalem! *
Sion, praise your God!

He has strengthened the bars of your gates, *
he has blessed the children within you.
He has established peace on your borders, *
he feeds you with finest wheat.

He sends out his word to the earth *
and swiftly runs his command.
He showers down snow white as wool, *
he scatters hoarfrost like ashes.

He hurls down hailstones like crumbs. *
The waters are frozen at his touch;
he sends forth his word and it melts them: *
at the breath of his mouth the waters flow.

He makes his word known to Jacob, *
to Israel his laws and decrees.
He has not dealt thus with other nations; *
he has not taught them his decrees.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. You are the glory of Jerusalem, the joy of Israel, the highest honor of our race.

Ant. 3 You will rejoice in your children, for they will be blessed through you and gathered together by the Lord.

Canticle: Eph 1:3-10

Blessed be the God and Father *
of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ *
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

He chose us in him *
before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy *
and blameless before him.

He destined us in love *
to be his sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will, †
to the praise of his glorious grace *
which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

In him we have redemption through his Blood, *
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace *
which he lavished upon us.

He has made known to us †
in all wisdom and insight *
the mystery of his will,
according to his purpose *
which he set forth in Christ.

His purpose he set forth in Christ, *
as a plan for the fullness of time,
to unite all things in him, *
things in heaven and things on earth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. You will rejoice in your children, for they will be blessed through you and gathered together by the Lord.

Scripture Reading

Rev 11:19; 12:1

God’s temple in heaven was opened, and the ark of his covenant was seen within his temple. And a great portent appeared in heaven, a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.

Short Responsory

R/. How fair you are, * O Virgin Mary. Repeat R/.
V/. Your face is resplendent with grace, * O Virgin Mary.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. Bounteous Mother of God, glory of Mount Carmel, we are your children and your people, endow us with your own virtues; have pity, and protect us from every danger.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Bounteous Mother of God, glory of Mount Carmel, we are your children and your people, endow us with your own virtues; have pity, and protect us from every danger.

Intercessions

Let us praise our heavenly Father, who gives us the joy of celebrating this solemn feast of the Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel, as we pray:

R/. May Mary, Mother and Beauty of Carmel, intercede for us.

Lord, in your plan the Daughter of Sion was foreshadowed by the prophets and made the heir of all your promises; by imitating Mary, who is the image of the Church, may your Church on earth be more and more the sacrament of the world’s salvation. R/.

You have honored the family of Carmel with the title and patronage of the Virgin Mary; may all Carmelites live with her in unswerving allegiance to Jesus Christ. R/.

You have entrusted the whole of mankind, the brothers and sisters of your Son, to the care of Mary’s maternal heart; may the world see her image in us as we strive to live in your presence and to give ourselves for the salvation of all. R/.

You call the humble family of Carmel, living in the cloister and in the world, to be especially dedicated to the Virgin Mary; may all who are called to Carmel be of one mind and one heart as they join together in prayer with Mary, the Mother of Jesus. R/.

You promise a crown of glory to those who persevere in your love till the end; may our departed brothers and sisters, who shared Mary’s love for you, rejoice with you forever in heaven. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Or:

Father,
may the prayers of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother and Queen of Carmel,
protect us, and bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God for ever and ever.

Angel_British Library_small

INVITATORY

Lord, open my lips.
 And my mouth will proclaim your praise.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Psalm 95

Come, let us sing to the Lord *
and shout with joy to the Rock who saves us.
Let us approach him with praise and thanksgiving *
and sing joyful songs to the Lord.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

The Lord is God, the mighty God, *
the great king over all the gods.
He holds in his hands the depths of the earth *
and the highest mountains as well
He made the sea; it belongs to him, *
the dry land, too, for it was formed by his hands.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Come, then, let us bow down and worship, *
bending the knee before the Lord, our maker,
For he is our God and we are his people, *
the flock he shepherds.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Today, listen to the voice of the Lord:*
Do not grow stubborn, as your fathers did in the wilderness,
when at Meriba and Massah they challenged me and provoked me, *
Although they had seen all of my works.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Forty years I endured that generation. 
I said, “They are a people whose hearts go astray *
and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger, *
“They shall not enter into my rest.”

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Come, ring out our joy to the Lord, as we thank him for the favors we have received through Mary, the Virgin Mother of Carmel.

Office of Readings

Hymn

1. Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel whom in ancient prophecy
God revealed to Saint Elijah by an Oriental sea.
Rise again on God’s creation bring to bloom this arid place
with the white cloud of your beauty and the rainfall of your grace.

2. Blessed cloud of God’s protection and His luminous abode,
light the pathways of your pilgrims to the promised land of God.
On the mount of contemplation be our surety and stay.
In the night a pillar glowing and a cloud of love by day.

3. Mother fair above all mothers, by the scapular we wear
be your own sign of salvation, which our willing shoulders bear.
Shield us from the foes of darkness, we are prey they seek to win.
us as your loving children from the tragedy of sin.

4. Virgin of the Incarnation, in the mysteries of grace,
God has made His habitation in our soul’s most secret place.
Toward that bright and inner kingdom, all our words and ways compel.
For the Father, Son and Spirit in its sacred silence dwell.

5. Lady of the mystic mountain, where the Lord has set His throne,
up its steep way to the Spirit, none can walk save love alone.
Grant us grace to climb Mount Carmel and to learn that love is loss.
Guide us still our ways outdistance all earth’s treasures save the cross.

6. Queen and Beauty of Mount Carmel, Virgin of the solitude,
in the wilderness of Carmel lies the world’s eternal good.
Draw us to its deep seclusion and make God alone our goal.
In the mystical Mount Carmel that lies hidden in the soul.

87.87.D.
Sr. Miriam of the Holy Spirit, OCD

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord, and who shall stand in his holy place? The one with clean hands and pure heart.

When the following psalm has been used at the Invitatory, Ps 94 is said here in place of it.

Psalm 24

The Lord’s is the earth and its fullness, *
the world and all its peoples.
It is he who set in on the seas; *
on the waters he made it firm.

Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord? *
Who shall stand in his holy place?
The man with clean hands and pure heart, †
who desires not worthless things, *
who has not sworn so as to deceive his neighbor.

He shall receive blessings from the Lord *
and reward from the God who saves him.
Such are the men who seek him, *
seek the face of the God of Jacob.

O gates, lift high your heads; †
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Who is the king of glory? †
The Lord, the mighty, the valiant, *
the Lord, the valiant in war.

O gates, lift high your heads; †
grow higher, ancient doors. *
Let him enter, the king of glory!

Who is he, the king of glory? †
He, the Lord of armies, *
he is the king of glory.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Who shall climb the mountain of the Lord, and who shall stand in his holy place? The one with clean hands and pure heart.

Ant. 2 I will lead them to my holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer.

Psalm 46

God is for us a refuge and strength *
a helper close at hand, in time of distress:
so we shall not fear though the earth should rock, *
though the mountains fall into the depths of the sea,
even though its waters rage and foam, *
even though the mountains be shaken by its waves.

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

The waters of a river give joy to God’s city, *
the holy place where the Most High dwells.
God is within, it cannot be shaken; *
God will help it at the dawning of the day.
Nations are in tumult, kingdoms are shaken: *
he lifts his voice, the earth shrinks away.

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

Come, consider the works of the Lord *
the redoubtable deeds he has done on the earth.
He puts an end to wars over all the earth; †
the bow he breaks, the spear he snaps. *
He burns the shields with fire.
“Be still and know that I am God, *
supreme among the nations, supreme on the earth!”

The Lord of hosts is with us: *
the God of Jacob is our stronghold.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. I will lead them to my holy mountain and make them joyful in my house of prayer.

Ant. 3 Glorious things are told of you, O city of God; the Lord founded you on his holy mountain!

Psalm 87

On the holy mountain is his city *
cherished by the Lord.
The Lord prefers the gates of Sion *
to all Jacob’s dwellings.
Of you are told glorious things, *
O city of God.

Babylon and Egypt I will count *
among those who know me;
Philistia, Tyre, Ethiopia, *
these will be her children
and Sion shall be called “Mother” *
for all shall be her children.

It is he, the Lord Most High, *
who gives each his place.
In his register of peoples he writes: *
‘These are her children’
and while they dance they will sing: *
‘In you all find their home.’

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Glorious things are told of you, O city of God; the Lord founded you on his holy mountain!

V/. I have brought you into the land of Carmel.
R/. To enjoy the fruits and blessings of it.

The First Reading

1 Kings 18:36-39, 41-45a

A reading from the First Book of Kings

Elijah prayed on the summit of Carmel, and heaven granted rain

And at the time of the offering of the oblation, Elijah the prophet came near and said, “O Lord, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Israel, let it be known this day that you are God in Israel, and that I am your servant, and that I have done all these things at your word. Answer me, O Lord, answer me, that this people may know that you, O Lord, are God, and that you have turned their hearts back.” Then the fire of the Lord fell, and consumed the burnt offering, and the wood, and the stones, and the dust, and licked up the water that was in the trench. And when all the people saw it, they fell on their faces; and they said “The Lord, he is God; the Lord, he is God.”

And Elijah said to Ahab, “Go up, eat and drink for there is a sound of the rushing of rain.” So Ahab went up to eat and to drink. And Elijah went up to the top of Carmel; and he bowed himself down upon the earth, and put his face between his knees. And he said to his servant, “Go up now, look toward the sea.” And he went up and looked, and said, “There is nothing.” And he said, “Go again seven times.” And at the seventh time he said, “Behold, a little cloud like a man’s hand is rising out of the sea.” And he said, “Go up, say to Ahab, ‘Prepare your chariot and go down, lest the rain stop you.’” And in a little while the heavens grew black with clouds and wind, and there was a great rain.

Responsory

R/. You care for the earth, give it water; you fill it with riches; * you bless its growth.
V/. The pastures of the wilderness flow with abundance, and the hills are girded with joy; * you bless its growth.
R/. You care for the earth, give it water; You fill it with riches; * you bless its growth.
V/. The pastures of the wilderness flow with abundance, and the hills are girded with joy; * you bless its growth.

The Second Reading  (Alternative 2)

May 10 and June 22, 1967

From the Allocutions of Pope Paul VI

Blessed are all who have believed

We can readily see that the Blessed Virgin Mary was endowed in high measure with a remarkable interior enlightenment, such as might have been anticipated in view of her sinlessness and the nature of her task in the world. The Gospels make abundantly clear that her soul was gifted with an extraordinary insight into the ways of God and a prophetic intuition. Yet above all else it was faith that most characterized the Mother of God — the kind of faith that does not need proof, but accepts a thing as true because God has spoken. The Second Vatican Council declares that “the Blessed Virgin went forward in her pilgrimage of faith,” and the Gospel records how generous and meritorious that pilgrimage was when it cites Elizabeth’s high tribute, which tells us so much about Mary’s psychology and holiness: “Blessed are you, for you have believed.”

We find confirmation of this faith, Our Lady’s foremost virtue, wherever the gospel tells of what she was, or what she said or what she did. Faced with the attitudes that characterize the incomparable figure of Mary in relation to the mystery of Christ realized in herself, we feel compelled to follow her example, and discover patterns for those who have, in conformity with God’s plan for our salvation chosen the religious life. She teaches us how to listen, how to explore, to accept, to make sacrifices; she teaches us how to meditate, to wait, to examine; she teaches us self-possession, and calm, absolute assurance in judgment and action; she teaches us, in short, the fullness of prayer and communion with God. And all these things, though we see them in Mary uniquely realized by that one soul which was full of grace and completely under the sway of the Holy Spirit, are yet all forms of faith, and therefore close to us and available not only for our admiration but for our imitation.

You have chosen the narrow, austere, arduous way of the ascetic life. You are in such a way committed to the pursuit of the supreme art of prayer and an intense spiritual life that you are branded as true searchers after the only fullness, the only peace, the only love: the union of the soul with God.

May the most holy Virgin Mary confirm you in your Carmelite vocation. May she safeguard your love for the things of the spirit. May she obtain for you the graces you need in your holy, laborious ascent towards the knowledge of the divine realm and the ineffable experiences of its dark nights and light-filled days. May she give you the desire for sanctity, the desire to bear eschatological witness to the kingdom of heaven. May she make you models for all the members of God’s Church, and bind you to them in brotherhood. And may she one day lead you into that possession of Christ and His glory which, even now, is the goal towards which your whole life is directed.

Responsory

R/. In faith receive the word of God which is able to save your souls. * Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.
V/. Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart. * Blessed are those who hear the word of God and keep it.

Where the Vigil Office is celebrated:

Canticles

Ant. Bring us, O Mary, to the summit of Carmel, to Christ our heavenly life.

Canticle I

Is 2:2-3

All the peoples will come to the house of the Lord

The mountain where God has chosen to dwell (Ps 67:17)

It shall come to pass in the latter days *
that the mountain of the house of the Lord
shall be established as the highest of the mountains, †
and shall be raised above the hills, *
and all the nations shall flow to it.

And many people shall come, and say †
‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, *
to the house of the God of Jacob,
that he may teach us his ways *
and that we may walk in his paths.’
For out of Sion shall go forth the law, *
and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Canticle II

Is 61:10-62:3

The prophet rejoices in the new Jerusalem

I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, as beautiful as a bride prepared to meet her husband (Rev 21:2)

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, *
my soul shall exult in my God;
for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, *
he has covered me with the robe of righteousness,
as a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, *
and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

For as the earth brings forth its shoots, *
and as a garden causes what is sown in it to spring up,
so the Lord God will cause righteousness and praise *
to spring forth before all the nations.

For Sion’s sake I will not keep silent, *
and for Jerusalem’s sake, I will not rest
until her vindication goes forth as brightness, *
and her salvation as a burning torch.

The nations shall see your vindication, *
and all the kings your glory;
and you shall be called by a new name *
which the mouth of the Lord will give.

You shall be a crown of beauty *
in the hand of the Lord,
and a royal diadem *
in the hand of your God.

Canticle III

Is 62:4-7

The glory of the new Jerusalem

Here God lives among men. He will make his home among them (Rev 21:3)

No longer are you to be named ‘Forsaken,’ *
nor your land ‘Abandoned,’
but you shall be called ‘My Delight,’ *
and your land, ‘The Wedded;’
for the Lord takes delight in you *
and your land will have its wedding.

Like a young man marrying a virgin, *
so will the one who built you wed you,
and as the bridegroom rejoices in his bride, *
so will your God rejoice in you.

On your walls, Jerusalem, *
I set watchmen.
Day or night *
they must never be silent.

You who keep the Lord mindful *
must take no rest.
Nor let him take rest †
till he has restored Jerusalem, *
and made her the boast of the earth.

Ant. Bring us, O Mary, to the summit of Carmel, to Christ our heavenly life.

Gospel

Lk 1:39-56

A reading from the holy Gospel according to Luke

Why should I be honored with a visit from the mother of my Lord?

Mary set out at that time and went as quickly as she could to a town in the hill country of Judah. She went into Zechariah’s house and greeted Elizabeth. Now as soon as Elizabeth heard Mary’s greeting, the child leaped in her womb and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. She gave a loud cry and said, “Of all women you are the most blessed, and blessed is the fruit of your womb. Why should I be honored with a visit from the mother of my Lord? For the moment your greeting reached my ears, the child in my womb leaped for joy. Yes, blessed is she who believed that the promise made her by the Lord would be fulfilled.”

And Mary said:

“My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord
and my spirit exults in God my savior;
because he has looked upon his lowly handmaid.
Yes, from this day forward all generations will call me blessed,
for the Almighty has done great things for me.
Holy is his name,
and his mercy reaches from age to age for those who fear him.
He has shown the power of his arm,
he has routed the proud of heart.
He has pulled down princes from their thrones and exalted the lowly.
The hungry he has filled with good things, the rich sent empty away.
He has come to the help of Israel his servant, mindful of his mercy
—according to the promise he made to our ancestors of
his mercy to Abraham and to his descendants for ever.”

Mary stayed with Elizabeth about three months and then went back home.

Te Deum

You are God: we praise you; *
You are the Lord: we acclaim you;
You are the eternal Father: *
All creation worships you.

To you all angels, all the powers of heaven, *
Cherubim and Seraphim, sing in endless praise:
Holy, holy, holy, Lord, God of power and might, *
heaven and earth are full of your glory.

The glorious company of apostles praise you. 
The noble fellowship of prophets praise you. *
The white-robed army of martyrs praise you.

Throughout the world the holy Church acclaims you: *
Father, of majesty unbounded,
your true and only Son, worthy of all worship, *
and the Holy Spirit, advocate and guide.

You, Christ, are the King of glory, *
the eternal Son of the Father.

When you became man to set us free *
you did not spurn the Virgin’s womb.

You overcame the sting of death, *
and opened the kingdom of heaven to all believers.

You are seated at God’s right hand in glory. *
We believe that you will come, and be our judge.

Come then, Lord, and help your people, *
bought with the price of your own blood,
and bring us with your saints*
to glory everlasting.

Save your people, Lord, and bless your inheritance.
 Govern and uphold them now and always.

Day by day we bless you.
 We praise your name for ever.

Keep us today, Lord, from all sin.
 Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy.

Lord, show us your love and mercy,
 for we have put our trust in you.

In you, Lord, is our hope:
 And we shall never hope in vain.

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

Flowery border_British Library_medium

 

Morning Prayer

Hymn

Let us in spirit make our way
to Carmel’s mountain height;
our Virgin Mother calls us there
to gather flowers of light.

This is indeed a holy place
where God has ever reigned;
here hearts are healed in silent prayer,
and strength of mind attained.

This is where living water flowed
to save the thirsting land,
to clothe the desert with fresh grass,
with trees the burning sand.

Cradle of our religious life
is Carmel’s height austere;
wherever Mary turns her gaze
flow waters springing clear.

Let us adore the Trinity
the Father honors her,
the Son embraces her with love,
the Spirit reigns in her!

C.M.
Carmeli ad altos vertices
Tr. unknown

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Fragrant is the scent of your perfume, Immaculate Virgin. Let us follow in your footsteps.

Psalm 63

O God, you are my God, for you I long; *
for you my soul is thirsting.
My body pines for you *
like a dry, weary land without water.
So I gaze on you in the sanctuary *
to see your strength and your glory.

For your love is better than life, *
my lips will speak your praise.
So I will bless you all my life, *
in your name I will lift up my hands.
My soul shall be filled as with a banquet, *
my mouth shall praise you with joy.

On my bed I remember you. *
On you I muse through the night
for you have been my help; *
in the shadow of your wings I rejoice.
My soul clings to you; *
your right hand holds me fast.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Fragrant is the scent of your perfume, Immaculate Virgin. Let us follow in your footsteps.

Ant. 2 Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; you are the most blessed of all women.

Canticle – Daniel 3:57-88, 56

Bless the Lord, all you works of the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Angels of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
You heavens, bless the Lord,
All you waters above the heavens, bless the Lord. *
All you hosts of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Sun and moon, bless the Lord. *
Stars of heaven, bless the Lord.

Every shower and dew, bless the Lord. *
All you winds, bless the Lord.
Fire and heat, bless the Lord. *
Cold and chill, bless the Lord.
Dew and rain, bless the Lord. *
Frost and chill, bless the Lord.
Ice and snow, bless the Lord. *
Nights and days, bless the Lord.
Light and darkness, bless the Lord. *
Lightnings and clouds, bless the Lord.

Let the earth bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Mountains and hills, bless the Lord. *
Everything growing from the earth, bless the Lord.
You springs, bless the Lord. *
Seas and rivers, bless the Lord.
You dolphins and all water creatures, bless the Lord. *
All you birds of the air, bless the Lord.
All you beasts, wild and tame, bless the Lord. *
You sons of men, bless the Lord.

O Israel, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.
Priests of the Lord, bless the Lord. *
Servants of the Lord, bless the Lord.
Spirits and souls of the just, bless the Lord. *
Holy men of humble heart, bless the Lord.
Hananiah, Azariah, Mishael, bless the Lord. *
Praise and exalt him above all forever.

Let us bless the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Spirit. *
Let us praise and exalt him above all for ever.
Blessed are you, Lord, in the firmament of heaven. *
Praiseworthy and glorious and exalted above all for ever.

Ant. Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with you; you are the most blessed of all women.

Ant. 3 Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary: you gave birth to him who made you, yet remain a virgin forever.

Psalm 149

Sing a new song to the Lord, *
his praise in the assembly of the faithful.
Let Israel rejoice in its maker, *
let Zion’s sons exult in their king.
Let them praise his name with dancing *
and make music with timbrel and harp.

For the Lord takes delight in his people. *
He crowns the poor with salvation.
Let the faithful rejoice in their glory, *
shout for joy and take their rest.
Let the praise of God be on their lips *
and a two-edged sword in their hand,

to deal out vengeance to the nations *
and punishment on all the peoples;
to bind their kings in chains *
and their nobles in fetters of iron;
to carry out the sentence pre-ordained; *
this honor is for all his faithful.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Blessed are you, O Virgin Mary: you gave birth to him who made you, yet remain a virgin forever.

Reading

Is 35:1-2

Let the wilderness and the dry-lands exult,
let the wasteland rejoice and bloom,
let it bring forth flowers like the jonquil,
let it rejoice and sing for joy.
The glory of Lebanon is bestowed on it
the splendor of Carmel and Sharon;
they shall see the glory of the Lord,
the splendor of our God.

Short Responsory

R/. Under your protection we take refuge, * Mother of God most holy. Repeat R/.
V/. Do not turn away from the prayers that spring from our need, * Mother of God most holy.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Zechariah

Ant. Jesus said to His Mother, “Woman, this is your son,” and to the disciple He said, “This is your Mother;” and from that hour the disciple took her as his own.

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel; *
he has come to his people and set them free.
He has raised up for us a mighty savior, *
born of the house of his servant David.

Through his holy prophets he promised of old †
that he would save us from our enemies, *
from the hands of all who hate us.

He promised to show mercy to our fathers*
and to remember his holy covenant.

This was the oath he swore to our father Abraham: *
to set us free from the hands of our enemies,
free to worship him without fear, *
holy and righteous in his sight all the days of our life.

You, my child, shall be called the prophet of the Most High; *
for you will go before the Lord to prepare his way,
to give his people knowledge of salvation *
by the forgiveness of their sins.

In the tender compassion of our God *
the dawn from on high shall break upon us,
to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death, *
and to guide our feet into the way of peace.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Jesus said to His Mother, “Woman, this is your son,” and to the disciple He said, “This is your Mother;” and from that hour the disciple took her as his own.

Intercessions

Christ our Savior, the first-born of many brothers, gave us his Mother as our own. On this sacred day let us come to him with thankful hearts and say:

R/. For the gift of your Mother, we give glory to you, Lord.

Christ our Redeemer, you prepared a worthy dwelling place for yourself in the sinless Virgin Mary; may we work today in your service and hers, poor in spirit and pure in heart. R/.

Only Word of the Father, uttered in eternal silence and lovingly received in the womb of the Virgin, may our Carmelite vocation lead us, like Mary, to hear the Word of God and put it into practice. R/.

Christ our Teacher, you offer the Virgin Mary as the model of every virtue to those who seek you; may we, her children, mirror her life, especially in our charity towards all. R/.

Jesus, Son of Mary, you gave your Mother to the apostle John to take into his own keeping; in our familiarity with Mary may we experience your ineffable love. R/.

Christ, Spouse of the Church, you sent the fire of the Holy Spirit upon Mary when she was joined with the apostles in prayer; may the whole family of Carmel remain faithful in prayer with Mary, and so be continually renewed by the Holy Spirit. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

WhitefriarsLondonBookplate_BritishLibrary_small

 

Daytime Prayer

The complementary psalms are used.

Midmorning

Ant. O Mary, you are a mother beyond compare, worthy to be remembered by your children forever.

Psalm 120

To the Lord in the hour of my distress *
I call and he answers me.
“O Lord, save my soul from lying lips, *
from the tongue of the deceitful.”

What shall he repay you in return, *
O treacherous tongue?
The warriors arrows sharpened *
and coals, red-hot, blazing.

(Alas, that I abide a stranger in Meshech, *
dwell among the tents of Kedar!)

Long enough have I been dwelling *
with those who hate peace.
I am for peace, but when I speak, *
they are for fighting.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 121

I lift up my eyes to the mountains; *
from where shall come my help?
My help shall come from the Lord *
who made heaven and earth.

May he never allow you to stumble! *
Let him sleep not, your guard.
No, he sleeps not nor slumbers, *
Israel’s guard.

The Lord is your guard and your shade; *
at your right side he stands.
By day the sun shall not smite you *
nor the moon in the night.

The Lord will guard you from evil, *
he will guard you soul.
The Lord will guard your going and coming *
both now and for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 129

“They have pressed me hard from my youth,” *
this is Israel’s song.
“They have pressed me hard from my youth *
but could never destroy me.

They plowed my back like plowmen, *
drawing long furrows.
But the Lord who is just, has destroyed *
the yoke of the wicked.”

Let them be shamed and routed, *
those who hate Zion!
Let them be like grass on the roof *
that withers before it flowers.

With that no reaper fill his arms, *
no binder makes his sheaves
and those passing by will not say:
“On you the Lord’s blessing!” *
“We bless you in the name of the Lord.”

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Prov 8:32-34

And now, my sons, listen to me:
happy are those who keep my ways.
Hear instruction and be wise,
and do not neglect it.
Happy is the man who listens to me,
watching daily at my gates,
waiting beside my doors.

V/. Whoever finds me finds life.
R/. And will receive salvation from the Lord.

Midday

Ant. Your souls will rejoice in her mercy, and her praise will not bring you to shame.

Psalm 123

To you have I lifted up my eyes, *
you who dwell in the heavens;
my eyes, like the eyes of slaves *
on the hand of their lords.

Like the eyes of a servant *
on the hand of her mistress,
so our eyes are on the Lord our God *
till he show us his mercy.

Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy. *
We are filled with contempt.
Indeed all too full is our soul
with the scorn of the rich, *
with the proud man’s disdain.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 124

“If the Lord had not been on our side,” *
this is Israel’s song.
“If the Lord had not been on our side *
when men rose up against us,
then would they have swallowed us alive *
when their anger was kindled.

Then would the waters have engulfed us, *
the torrent gone over us;
over our head would have swept *
the raging waters.”

Blessed be the Lord who did not give us *
a prey to their teeth!
Our life, like a bird, has escaped *
from the snare of the fowler.

Indeed the snare has been broken *
and we have escaped.
Our help is in the name of the Lord, *
who made heaven and earth.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 125

Those who put their trust in the Lord
are like Mount Zion, that cannot be shaken, *
that stands for ever.

Jerusalem! The mountains surround her,
so the Lord surrounds his people *
both now and for ever.

For the scepter of the wicked shall not rest *
over the land of the just
for fear that the hands of the just *
should turn to evil.

Do good, Lord, to those who are good, *
to the upright of heart;
but the crooked and those who do evil, *
drive them away!

On Israel, peace!

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Sir 24:15-16

I made Sion my stronghold, the holy city my resting-place, Jerusalem my throne. My roots spread out among the people that enjoys his favor, my God has granted me a share in his own domain; where his faithful servants are gathered I love to linger.

V/. My spirit is sweeter than honey.
R/. My inheritance sweeter than the honeycomb.

Midafternoon

Ant. With the fruit of her hands she planted a vineyard; her children stood up and proclaimed her blessed.

Psalm 126

When the Lord delivered Zion from bondage, *
it seemed like a dream.
Then was our mouth filled with laughter, *
on our lips there were songs.

The heathens themselves said: “What marvels *
the Lord worked for them!”
What marvels the Lord worked for us! *
Indeed we were glad.

Deliver us, O Lord, from our bondage *
as streams in dry land.
Those who are sowing in tears *
will sing when they reap.

They go out, they go out, full of tears, *
carrying seed for the sowing:
they come back, they come back, full of song, *
carrying their sheaves.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Psalm 127

If the Lord does not build the house, *
in vain do its builders labor;
if the Lord does not watch over the city, *
in vain does the watchman keep vigil.

In vain is your earlier rising, *
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat, *
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber.

Truly sons are a gift from the Lord, *
a blessing, the fruit of the womb.
Indeed the sons of youth *
are like arrows in the hand of a warrior.

O the happiness of the man *
who has filled his quiver with these arrows!
He will have no cause for shame *
when he disputes with his foes in the gateways.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit:
 as it was in the beginning, is now, and will be for ever. Amen.

Scripture Reading

Sir 24:23-25

No vine ever yielded fruit so fragrant; the enjoyment of honor and riches is the fruit I bear. It is I that give birth to all noble loving, all reverence, all true knowledge, and the holy gift of hope. From me comes every grace of faithful observance, from me all promise of life and vigor.

V/. Look down from heaven and see, and visit this vine.
R/. The vine your right hand has planted.

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

 

Mount Carmel Looking toward the sea_British Library_Medium

Evening Prayer II

Hymn

When thirst broke up the ground stricken at God’s command,
and crops lay on the long baked ridges of the soil,
swiftly Elias went where Carmel towered above,
scaling rough rocks with zeal and toil.

Great soul in fervent prayer, lifting his hands on high,
prophet, he pleaded there, turning God’s wrath again.
Hour after hour he strove for those marked down to die
unless the fields were saved with rain.

Then, far off, where the sea stretched in a distant plain,
a cloud fine as a hand lit in the deep blue cope;
and soon thunderclouds came, and after them the rain
drumming the dust with rhythms of hope.

Mary, we are those crops which drought of grace lays low,
you are that mystic cloud, that fruitful womb are you.
Your son, the God you nurse, is new life’s rain to us
who grow once more as hope comes true.

Spare us, great triune God, as we too bend in prayer,
help us scale the high stars, our mother’s worthy sons;
There, raised by her, we praise you everlastingly
and pour forth love’s unending songs.

12.12.12.8.
Bro. John Leonard Davies, O.C.D.

Psalmody

Ant. 1 Behold the handmaid of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word.

Psalm 122

I rejoiced when I heard them say: *
“Let us go to God’s house.”
And now our feet are standing *
within your gates, O Jerusalem.

Jerusalem is built as a city *
strongly compact.
It is there that the tribes go up, *
the tribes of the Lord.

For Israel’s law it is, *
there to praise the Lord’s name.
There were set the thrones of judgment *
of the house of David.

For the peace of Jerusalem pray: *
“Peace be to your homes!
May peace reign in your walls, *
in your palaces, peace!”

For love of my brethren and friends *
I say: “Peace upon you!”
For love of the house of the Lord *
I will ask for your good.

Ant. Behold the handmaid of the Lord: let it be done to me according to your word.

Ant. 2 Mary heard the Word of God and kept it, treasuring it in her heart.

Psalm 127

If the Lord does not build the house, *
in vain do its builders labor;
if the Lord does not watch over the city, *
in vain does the watchman keep vigil.

In vain is your earlier rising, *
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat: *
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber.

Truly sons are a gift from the Lord, *
a blessing, the fruit of the womb.
Indeed the sons of youth *
are like arrows in the hand of a warrior.

O the happiness of the man *
who has filled his quiver with these arrows!
He will have no cause for shame *
when he disputes with his foes in the gateways.

Ant. Mary heard the Word of God and kept it, treasuring it in her heart.

Ant. 3 The apostles persevered in prayer together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Canticle: Eph 1:3-10

Blessed be the God and Father *
of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who has blessed us in Christ *
with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places.

He chose us in him *
before the foundation of the world,
that we should be holy *
and blameless before him.

He destined us in love *
to be his sons through Jesus Christ,
according to the purpose of his will, †
to the praise of his glorious grace *
which he freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

In him we have redemption through his blood, *
the forgiveness of our trespasses,
according to the riches of his grace *
which he lavished upon us.

He has made known to us †
in all wisdom and insight *
the mystery of his will,
according to his purpose *
which he set forth in Christ.

His purpose he set forth in Christ, *
as a plan for the fullness of time,
to unite all things in him, *
things in heaven and things on earth.

Ant. The apostles persevered in prayer together with Mary, the Mother of Jesus.

Scripture Reading

Gal 4:4-6

When the designated time had come, God sent forth his Son born of a woman, born under the law, to deliver from the law those who were subjected to it, so that we might receive our status as adopted sons. The proof that you are sons is the fact that God has sent forth into our hearts the spirit of his Son, which cries out “Abba, Father!”

Short Responsory

R/. I exult for joy in the Lord, * my soul rejoices in God. Repeat R/.
V/. For he has clothed me in the garments of salvation; he has wrapped me in the cloak of justice. * My soul rejoices in God.
Glory . . . R/.

Canticle of Mary

Ant. Mary, ever Virgin, has been given us as our Mother; she has taken pity on us; today we remember. Today all Carmel sings for joy as we keep a solemn festival in her honor whose name we bear.

My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord, *
my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
for he has looked with favor on his lowly servant, *
and from this day all generations will call me blessed.

The Almighty has done great things for me: *
holy is his Name.
He has mercy on those who fear him *
in every generation.

He has shown the strength of his arm, *
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.

He has cast down the mighty from their thrones,*
and has lifted up the lowly.

He has filled the hungry with good things, *
and has sent the rich away empty.

He has come to the help of his servant Israel*
for he has remembered his promise of mercy,
the promise he made to our fathers, *
to Abraham and his children for ever.

Glory to the Father, and to the Son, *
and to the Holy Spirit:
as it was in the beginning, is now, *
and will be for ever. Amen.

Ant. Mary, ever Virgin, has been given us as our Mother; she has taken pity on us; today we remember. Today all Carmel sings for joy as we keep a solemn festival in her honor whose name we bear.

Intercessions

As we honor the holy Mother of God, under whose name and patronage we live, let us pray with confidence to Christ our Lord and say:

R/. Through the intercession of the Mother of Carmel, hear us, O Lord.

You said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven;” may we stand with Mary among the poor and humble of the Lord, so that you may be our only wealth. R/.

You said, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God;” in following the Immaculate Virgin may we come to love that purity of heart which makes us eager to see the Father’s face. R/.

You said, “Blessed are those who have not seen, and yet believe;” with Mary at our side, may we never cease to trust in the love you have for us as we journey in this night of faith. R/.

You said, “You ought to pray always and never lose heart;” teach us to pray like Mary, treasuring your word in our hearts and proclaiming it in our lives. R/.

You said, “A new commandment I give you: love one another as I have loved you;” united in heart and mind, may we be ready to spend our lives for our brothers and sisters and share with Mary in your work of redemption. R/.

Dying on the cross, you said to John, and through him to all disciples, “Behold your Mother;” may we always please you by living in the intimate company of the Mother of Grace. R/.

You said, “I want those you have given me to be with me where I am:” may all those who trusted in your everlasting mercy rejoice one day with you and Mary in our Father’s house. R/.

Our Father …

Prayer

Lord God,
you willed that the Order of Carmel
should be named in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary,
Mother of your Son.
Through her prayers, as we honor her today,
bring us to your holy Mountain,
Christ our Lord,
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
one God, for ever and ever.

 

NDMC_antique-woodcut
The Banner of Carmel
Mother and Beauty of Carmel
The Moon Beneath Her Feet
Elijah and Elisha, Leaders of Carmel

 

 

Marie du jour: 16 May

FLOS CARMELI

Sequence Hymn for the Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, 16 July


FLOS Carmeli,
vitis florigera,
splendor caeli,
virgo puerpera
singularis.

Mater mitis
sed viri nescia
Carmelitis
esto propitia
stella maris.

Radix Iesse
germinans flosculum
nos ad esse
tecum in saeculum
patiaris.

Inter spinas
quae crescis lilium
serva puras
mentes fragilium
tutelaris.

Armatura
fortis pugnantium
furunt bella
tende praesidium
scapularis.

Per incerta
prudens consilium
per adversa
iuge solatium
largiaris.

Mater dulcis
Carmeli domina,
plebem tuam
reple laetitia
qua bearis.

Paradisi
clavis et ianua,
fac nos duci
quo, Mater, gloria
coronaris. Amen.

Composition of the Flos Carmeli sequence hymn is attributed to Saint Simon Stock, the Carmelite prior general, whose feast day is observed on 16 May.

The Discalced Carmelite friars of the Paris province offer an online retreat each year for Advent and Lent that is translated into English by Secular Carmelites in North America.

The 2018 theme for the Advent retreat is the Flos Carmeli sequence hymn. You can sign up for the weekly meditation emails here.

Advent retreat poster 2018 (2)

ALBERT of JERUSALEM - Employ every care in keeping silent
For thus saith the Lord God the Holy One of Israel: If you return and be quiet, you shall be saved: in silence and in hope shall your strength be. (Isaiah 30:15)

Lady of the mystic mountain,
where the Lord has set His throne,
up its steep way to the Spirit,
none can walk save love alone.
Grant us grace to climb Mount Carmel
and to learn that love is loss.
Guide us still our ways outdistance
all earth’s treasures save the cross.

NDMC_Virgen del Carmen_enthroned with Christ

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 8

Scripture – Galatians 5:19, 22-25

What human nature does is quite plain. But the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility, and self-control. There is no law against such things as these. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have put to death their human nature with all its passions and desires. The Spirit has given us life; he must also control our lives.

Reading – Père Jacques of Jesus, O.C.D., from his retreat to the Carmel of Pontoise, 1943

There are two ways of communing with God. The first is the sacramental way, by reception of the Sacred Host, which allows us to bear Christ’s presence within ourselves. The second and unceasing way consists of God giving himself to us every moment of every day of our lives. In this way, God comes to us in the form of a duty, a joy or a sorrow. God comes to us in other persons, such as an unappealing [person] with whom we have to work or a congenial [friend] with whom we sit at [a meal]. In all these situations, it is God who comes to us, but we do not realize his presence. Yet, whatever the form behind which he hides and whatever the garb in which he presents himself, he is the God of Wisdom, Omnipotence, and Love without limits.

We will be saints, with holiness like that of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Saint John of the Cross, Saint Teresa of Avila and the Little Flower, when God comes to us no longer in divine radiance, but in the form of a crushing threat to our life. Such was the experience of Christ in his Passion. Even if our human nature recoils in fear and trembling, we will be able to commune with God within the recesses of our soul through abandonment. There lies the key to God’s love and peace.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from Listen to the Silence: A Retreat With Père Jacques
Translated and Edited by Francis J. Murphy 
Copyright © 2005 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 7

Scripture – Romans 8:5-7

Those who live as their human nature tells them to, have their minds controlled by what human nature wants. Those who live as the Spirit tells them to, have their minds controlled by what the Spirit wants. To be controlled by human nature results in death; to be controlled by the Spirit results in life and peace. And so people become enemies of God when they are controlled by their human nature; for they do not obey God’s law, and in fact they cannot obey it.

Reading – Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity, from her Letters

Yes, my darling, I am praying for you and I keep you in my soul quite close to God, in that little inner sanctuary where I find Him at every hour of the day and night. I’m never alone: my Christ is always there praying in me, and I pray with Him. You grieve me, My Framboise; I can well see that you’re unhappy and I assure you it’s your own fault. Be at peace. I don’t believe you’re crazy yet, just nervous and overexcited, and when you’re like that, you make others suffer too. Ah, if I could teach you the secret of happiness as God has taught it to me. You say I don’t have any worries or sufferings; it’s true that I’m very happy, but if you only knew that a person can be just as happy even when she is crossed. We must always keep our eyes on God. In the beginning, it’s necessary to make an effort when we’re just boiling inside, but quite gently, with patience and God’s help, we get there in the end.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from Saint Elizabeth of the Trinity, The Complete Works of Elizabeth of the Trinity volume 2: Letters from Carmel 
Copyright © 2003 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 6

Scripture – Romans 15:4, 13

Everything written in the Scriptures was written to teach us, in order that we might have hope through the patience and encouragement which the Scriptures give us. May God, the source of hope, fill you with all joy and peace by means of your faith in him, so that your hope will continue to grow by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Reading – Saint Teresa of Jesus of the Andes, from her Writings

Do everything for love of Him. Do not seek to please others. They are so mistaken in their judgments! God sees deeply within you at every moment, as though you were the only person alive. Be aware that as you sleep, as you work and live, there is an infinite Being concerned with giving you life, with loving you eternally and infinitely!

How I wish I could fill you with these thoughts, which make everything else pale in comparison, so that there is nothing before you but God! Then, what peace, what joy we might experience. We would understand that God is our center. We would be living the life of love, the life of heaven.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from Barbara Haight Garcia, OCDS, The Writings of Saint Teresa of Jesus of the Andes: An Abridgement
Copyright © 2003 by Library of Congress 
Published by New Life Publishing

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 5

Scripture – Psalm 16:7-11

I praise the Lord, because he guides me,
   and in the night my conscience warns me.
I am always aware of the Lord’s presence;
   he is near, and nothing can shake me.

And so I am thankful and glad,
   and I feel completely secure,
because you protect me from the power of death.
I have served you faithfully,
   and you will not abandon me to the world of the dead.

You will show me the path that leads to life;
   your presence fills me with joy
   and brings me pleasure forever.

Reading – Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection, O.C.D., Spiritual Maxims on the Presence of God

The [practice of the] presence of God is an application of our mind to God, or a remembrance of God present, that can be brought about by either the imagination or the understanding.

I know someone who, for forty years, has been practicing an intellectual presence of God to which he gives several other names. Sometimes he calls it a “simple act,” a “clear and distinct knowledge of God,” an “indistinct view,” or a “general and loving awareness of God.” Other times he names it “attention to God” “silent conversation with God,” “trust in God,” or “the soul’s life and peace.” This person told me that all these forms of God’s presence are nothing but synonyms for the same thing, and that it is at present second nature to him. Here is how:

This person says that the habit is formed by the repetition of acts and by frequently bringing the mind back into God’s presence. He says that as soon as he is free from his occupations, and often even when he is most taken up by them, the recesses of his mind [esprit] or the innermost depths of his soul are raised with no effort on his part and remain suspended and fixed in God, above all things, as in its center and resting place. Since he is generally aware that his mind, thus held in suspension, is accompanied by faith, he is satisfied. This is what he calls “actual presence of God,” which includes all the other types of presence and much more besides, so that he now lives as if only he and God were in the world. He converses with God everywhere, asks him for what he needs, and rejoices continuously with him in countless ways.

It is important, however, to realize that this conversation with God takes place in the depths and center of the soul. It is there that the soul speaks to God heart to heart, and always in a deep and profound peace that the soul enjoys in God. Everything that takes place outside the soul means no more to it than a lit straw that goes out as soon as it is ignited, and almost never, or very rarely, disturbs its inner peace.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from Brother Lawrence of the Resurrection, Writings and Conversations on the Practice of the Presence of God Writings and Conversations on the Practice of the Presence of God 
Copyright © 1994, 2015 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc. 
 Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 4

Scripture – Isaiah 26:3-4

You, Lord, give perfect peace
   to those who keep their purpose firm
   and put their trust in you.
Trust in the Lord forever;
   he will always protect us.

Reading – Blessed Constance of Compiègne’s address to her brother, as recorded by Sr. Marie of the Incarnation (Mme. Philippe)

Gentlemen, it was only with the consent of my parents that I entered here. If they now want me to leave because their tenderness causes them to be alarmed by those dangers I may face in wanting to remain, I am grateful to them. But nothing, absolutely nothing but death can ever separate me from the company of my Mothers and Sisters. And you, my brother, whom I am happy to see, though probably for the last time, please reassure our dear parents that indifference plays no part in my refusal to yield to their desires. My heart is even sorely grieved to cause them sorrow. Yet surely they won’t find it a bad thing that I am led by my conscience. Plead with them then on my behalf, beg them not to worry about me since nothing whatsoever can happen except as it pleases God to allow it. And, in regard to that, I am completely at peace.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from William Bush, To Quell the Terror: The Mystery of the Vocation of the Sixteen Carmelites of Compiègne Guillotined July 17, 1774 
Copyright © 1999, 2013 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc. 
 Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Blessed cloud of God’s protection and His luminous abode,
light the pathways of your pilgrims to the promised land of God.
On the mount of contemplation be our surety and stay.
In the night a pillar glowing and a cloud of love by day.

NDMC_Virgen del Carmen with Teresa & John

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 3

Scripture – Wisdom 6:14-16

Get up early in the morning to find her, and you will have no problem; you will find her sitting at your door. To fasten your attention on Wisdom is to gain perfect understanding. If you look for her, you will soon find peace of mind, because she will be looking for those who are worthy of her, and she will find you wherever you are. She is kind and will be with you in your every thought.

Reading – Saint Edith Stein, Letter 309 to Sr. Maria Electa Sommer, O.C.D.

With all my heart I join in the celebration of Your Charity’s big feast. Two years ago [February 11, 1938] Our Lady of Lourdes brought me acceptance for my perpetual profession. So it is a very special day to remember for me, too. We will unite our petitions and our thanks, won’t we? It is a joy for heaven and earth when another soul gives herself completely to the Lord. May our dear Queen of Peace make Your Charity an angel of peace for the beloved Cologne Carmel and for all of troubled humanity.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from Edith Stein's Self-Portrait in Letters, 1916-1942, Sister Teresa
Benedicta of the Cross, Discalced Carmelite, translated by Josephine Koeppel
(The Collected Works of Edith Stein, vol. 5)
Copyright © 1993 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc. 
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 2

Scripture – Psalm 4:6-8

There are many who pray:
   “Give us more blessings, O Lord.
   Look on us with kindness!”
But the joy that you have given me
   is more than they will ever have
   with all their grain and wine.

When I lie down, I go to sleep in peace;
   you alone, O Lord, keep me perfectly safe.

Reading – Saint John of the Cross, The Ascent of Mount Carmel: Book 2, Chapter 13

The third and surest sign is that a person likes to remain alone in loving awareness of God, without particular considerations, in interior peace and quiet and repose, and without the acts and exercises (at least discursive, those in which one progresses from point to point) of the intellect, memory, and will. Such a one prefers to remain only in the general loving awareness and knowledge we mentioned, without any particular knowledge or understanding… Although the interior peace is more abundant, the individual allows no room to experience and enjoy it. But the more habituated persons become to this calm, the more their experience of this general loving knowledge of God will increase. This knowledge is more enjoyable than all other things because without the soul’s labor it affords peace, rest, savor, and delight.

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from the Collected Works of St. John of the Cross
Copyright © 1991 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Hail, Gate of Heaven,
With glory now crowned,
Bring us to safety
Where thy Son is found,
true joy to see.

NDMC-Simon-Stock_statue

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Day 1

Scripture  –  Acts 27:23-25

For last night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I worship came to me and said, ‘Don’t be afraid, Paul! You must stand before the Emperor. And God in his goodness to you has spared the lives of all those who are sailing with you.’ So take courage, men! For I trust in God that it will be just as I was told.

Reading  –  Saint Teresa of Avila, Spiritual Testimonies: 50 – Father Gracián’s health

(Seville, probably 1575)

Father Gracián’s health

1. Having been so distressed over our Father’s health that I couldn’t be at peace, and begging the Lord very emphatically one day after Communion that since He had given our Father to me He not allow me to be without him, the Lord told me: “Don’t be afraid.”

Novena Prayer

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God, Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

Excerpt from the Collected Works of St. Teresa of Avila
Copyright © 1976, 1980, 1985 by Washington Province of Discalced Carmelite Friars, Inc.
Published by ICS Publications, Washington DC

Novena to Our Lady of Mount Carmel, July 8 – 16

O Most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel,
Fruitful Vine, Splendor of heaven,
Blessed Mother of the Son of God,
Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me
and show me herein that you are my Mother.

O Holy Mary, Mother of God,
Queen of heaven and earth,
I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart
to succor me in this necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power!
O help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.

Our Lady, Queen and Beauty of Carmel,
pray for me and obtain my requests!
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands!

O gentle Mother
Who in Carmel reigns,
Share with your servants
That gladness you gained
and now enjoy.

NDMC_Circle of Diego Quispe Tito, Peruvian (Cuzco), 1611-1681 - Virgin of Carmel Saving Souls in Purgatory

Our way uncertain,
Surrounded by foes,
Unfailing counsel
You give to those
who turn to thee.

Stella-Maris_Mr-Klevra

Purest of lilies,
That flowers among thorns,
Bring help to the true heart
That in weakness turns
and trusts in thee.

4785564505_56c6f0b88c_o
XI Romería de la Virgen del Carmen celebrada el 11 de Julio de 2010 en Valladolid en el río Pisuerga organizada por la Asociación Cultural Amigos del Pisuerga. Photo: Ángel Cantero

 

 

Strong stem of Jesse,
Who bore one bright flower,
Be ever near us
And guard us each hour,
who serve thee here.

NDMC_Stella-Maris
Statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Stella Maris Basilica, Haifa

On July 3, 1933, the statue of Our Lady of Mount Carmel was blessed by Cardinal Rafael Rossi, O.C.D. in the Parish of St. Teresa in Rome after a period of art conservation and restoration. The image had been transferred from Mount Carmel to Rome to place a solid body on the statue and then to ornament it, at the request of the General Chapter held at Stella Maris Basilica on Mount Carmel to mark the occasion of the III Centenary of the Discalced Carmelite foundation made on Mount Carmel by Fr. Prosper of the Holy Spirit in 1631.  The statue was sculpted in part with cedar from Lebanon.

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