Carmelite Order of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel (Third Order), is a lay
association whose members, replying to the special call of God, freely and deliberately
promise to live the evangelical life in the spirit of the Carmelite Order and under its
Some lay-people, because of a special
call, share the charism of religious families. This charism is the common heritage of the
People of God, and it becomes for them a source of strength and a school of life. The
Church approves these charisms and gives encouragement by inviting the laity to try
faithfully to adopt the special characteristics of the spiritual life proper to these
The entire Carmelite family, in its task of living out its
consecration to Christ, seeks to live in the presence of the living and true God who, in
the person of Christ, lives in our midst; it is a family that seeks divine intimacy.
In the family, in work or professional surroundings, in
their social responsibilities, in everyday actions, in their relations with others, Lay
Carmelites look for the hidden hand of God. They recognize this hand of God and they help
the seed of salvation bloom according to the spirit of the Beatitudes by a humble and
continual exercise of the virtues of honesty, justice, sincerity, kindness and courage,
without which there can be no true human and Christian life.
This Gospel way of living which Lay Carmelites seek to
live, a life of contemplative prayer, a communion of life and ministry, is summed up by
one word, love. St. Therese of the Child Jesus, a great saint of Carmel, showed this
clearly to us when she cried out: "O Jesus, my love ... my vocation, at last I
have found it ... MY VOCATION IS LOVE! "