October 1, 2013

Becoming a Carmelite...

Any member of the Catholic Church, lay person or cleric, at least 18 years of age, may apply for admission to the Aspirancy Program in a Secular Carmelite Community.  This introductory program normally lasts a year, after which a candidate may be admitted into the Community’s Formation Program.  At the beginning of this period of formation, a large, ceremonial Brown Scapular will be given to the candidate, an outward symbol of affiliation with the Order and a sign that the Blessed Virgin Mary is both Mother and Model of Carmel. 
The formation Program is composed in three categories:

1. Preparation of First or Temporary Promise:  a 2-year program  deepening the life of prayer and preparing a candidate for making the First  Promise

2. Preparation of Final or Definitive Promise:  a 3 year program preparing the candicate for a lifelong program with the goal of continuing and deepening the Carmelite vocation.

3. On-going formation:  a lifelong program with the goal of continuing and deepening the Carmelite vocation

Preparation for receiving the  Scapular

Duration: A minimum  of 12 months
Course of Study: 
1) History of the Order
2) Overview of Carmelite Spirituality
3) Nature of OCDS vocation 
4) Discussion of Discernment Process
Rule of St. Albert 
6) Constitutions and Statues 
7) Deepening of Teaching on:
      a) Mental  prayer
      b) Divine Office
      c) Spiritual Reading
8)  Ecclescial Dimension of the Teresian

Temporary Promise 
Deepening  the life of prayer and  preparation for making Temporary Promise.

Duration: A  minimum of 2 years
Course of  Study:

1) Introduction  to the Writings
    of St. Teresa
      a)  Way of Perfection
Life 2) Introductions to the Writings
     of St. John of the  Cross
       a)  Poetry
       b) Spiritual Canticle
3) Prayer  
      a) Carmelite  approach to prayer
      b) Methods of prayer 
4)  Additional study  of
       a) Rule of St. Albert 
 Constitutions and Statues 
5) Theology of the Promise
       a) Evangelical Counsels
       b)  Beatitudes 

Definitive  Promise
Preparation for a life-time commitment to Carmel

Duration:  A minimum of  3 years

Course of Study:

1) Works of St. Teresa
      a) Interior Castle
Foundations 2) Works  of St. John of the Cross
      a) Spiritual Canticle
      b) Living  Flame
      c)  Ascent of Mt. Carmel
Dark Night 3) Works of St. Therese
Story of a Soul       b) Last Conversations
4)  Other Carmelite Saints
5)  Prayer– Deeper study of prayer in the Works of Carmelite Saints
6)  Review of  the Theology of  the Promises
      a. Evangelical Counsels
      b. Beatitudes 

On-Going Formation

To  continue and deepen one’s  Carmelite  vocation.

Durations:  Throughout one’s  life
Course of Study:
1)  Scripture
2) Teaching of St. Teresa
3) Teaching of St. John of the  Cross
4) Teaching of St  Therese
5) Other Saints and Blessed of the  Order
6) History of the Order 
7)  Christian Doctrine