THE PROMISE OF OUR LADY
“Take this Scapular. Whosoever dies wearing it shall not suffer eternal fire. It shall be a sign of salvation, a protection in danger, and a pledge of peace.”
Mary watches over her loved ones. She has a Mother’s love for those who profess openly before the world their love for her.
So she watches with eagerness and guards with care those who wear her uniform and profess by her scapular their consecration to her.
A wedding ring is a sign of love pledged and fidelity preserved.
A locket is eternal reminder of the one whose picture the locket frames.
A scapular is public manifestation in the sight of God, of men, and of angels that we belong to Mary, that we love her virtues, and that we are trying to live her life before all observers… a beautiful “spectacle for God and men.”
How wise are those who in this age of temptations mark themselves clearly as Mary’s property. Mary guards her own. She will guard them.
How full of divine common sense are they who make it clear that they want Mary near them in danger and that they hope her eyes will find them easily when they are in peril. Mary watches over her own. She has no doubt that those who are marked clearly with her uniform are her own.
Confident in the protection that Mary grants to those who are her own we say:
THE PRAYER OF OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL
O God, who has honored the Order of Carmel with the special title of thy Blessed Mother Mary, ever Virgin, grant in thy mercy that we who keep her memory this day may be shielded by her protection and be found worthy to attain unto joy eternal. Who livest and reignest with God the Father in the unity of the Holy Ghost, God, world without end. Amen.
Remember, O most gracious Virgin Mary, that never was it known that anyone who fled to your protection, implored your help or sought your intercession, was left unaided.
Inspired with this confidence, I fly to you, O virgin of virgins, my Mother; to you do I come, before you I stand, sinful and sorrowful. O Mother of the Word Incarnate, despise not my petitions, but in your mercy hear and answer me. Amen.
THE WORD OF GOD
Those who love me I also love, and those who seek me find me. With are riches and honor, enduring wealth and prosperity. My fruit is better than gold, yes, than pure gold, and my revenue than choice silver.”
“O children, listen to me; instruction and wisdom do not reject! Happy the man who obeys me, and happy those who keep my ways.”
“We know that when the earthly tent in which we dwell is destroyed we have a dwelling provided for us by God, a dwelling in the heavens, not made by hands but to last forever.”
-2 Corinthians 5:1
“All glorious is the King’s daughter as she enters; her raiment is threaded with spun gold.”
“She is the redulgence of eternal light, the spotless mirror of the power of God, the image of His goodness.”
“Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you.”
“The wine ran out, and Jesus’ Mother… instructed those waiting on table, “Do whatever he tells you.”
“Happy the man watching daily at my gates…for he who finds me finds life, and wins favor from the Lord.”
ACT OF CONSECRATION
Virgin Mother of God, Mary Immaculate, we dedicate and consecrate ourselves to you under the title of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. May this scapular be for each one of us a sure sign of your affection for us and a constant reminder of our duties toward you. Ever while wearing it, may we be blessed by your loving protection and preserved in the grace of your Son.
Most powerful Virgin, Mother of our Savior, keep us close to you every moment of our lives. Obtain for us, your children, the grace of a happy death; so that in union with you, we may enjoy the blessing of heaven forever. Amen.
Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you.
“Glorify this mystery by word and work.”
Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in them the fire of your love. Send forth your spirit, and they shall be created; and you shall renew the face of the earth.
O God, you instructed the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit. Grant us in the same spirit to be truly wise and ever to rejoice in His consolation, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us who have recourse to you.
Lord Jesus Christ, youhave been pleased to glorify by numberless miracles the Blessed Virgin Mary, immaculate from the first moment of her conception. Grant that all who devoutly implore her scapular on earth may eternally enjoy your presence in heaven, who with the Father and the Holy Spirit, live and reign, God, forever and ever. Amen.
Lord Jesus Christ, for the accomplishment of your works, you have chosen the weak things of the world, that no flesh may glory in your sight. And for a better belief in Out Lady of Mount Carmel, you have wished that the scapular be filled with like humility, we may glorify this mystery be word and work. Amen.
“His Greater Glory”
Immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ and our Mother, penetrated with the most lively confidence in your all-powerful and never failing intercession, manifested so often through the scapular, we your loving and trustful children implore you to obtain for us the graces and favors we ask during this Novena, if they be beneficial to our immortal soul, and the souls which we pray: (Mention your request.)
You know, Mary, how often our souls have been the sanctuaries of your Son who disdains iniquity. Obtain for us then a deep hatred of sin and that purity of heart which will attach us to God alone so that our every thought, word, and deed, may tend to his greater glory
Obtain for us also a spirit of prayer and self-denial that we may recover by penance what we have lost by sin and at length attain to that blessed abode where you are queen of angels and of people. Amen.
HISTORY OF THE SACRED SCAPULAR
Devotion to Our Lady of Mount Carmel (the Madonna of the Scapular) goes back all the way to the 8th century B. C. It was than that the great prophet Elias ascended the holy mountain of Carmel in Palestine, and began there a long tradition of contemplative life and prayer. It is amazing to realize that centuries before Christ was Born, Holy Elias and his followers had mystically dedicated themselves to God’s Mother-to-come, Mary, Queen of Mount Carmel. Nearly three thousand years later, that tradition of prayer, contemplation, and devotion to Mary continues to live and prevail in the Catholic Church.
On the Feast of Pentecost, the birthday of the Church, the spiritual descendants of Elias and his followers came down from Mount Carmel Fittingly, they were the first that day to accept the message of Christianity and to be baptized by the Apostles. When, at last, they were presented to Our Lady, and heard her message, they were overcome with a sense of majesty and sanctity which they never forgot. Returning to their mountain, they erected the first chapel ever built in honor of the Blessed Virgin Mary. From that time, devotion to God’s Mother was handed down by the hermits on Mount Carmel as a treasured spiritual legacy
If you wear Mary’s Scapular, you should be introduced to St. Simon Stock. You may already know him from his picture (along with Our Lady’s) on your scapular. In the year 1241, the Baron de Grey of England was returning from the Crusades in Palestine; he brought with him a group of religious from Mount Carmel, among them, Simon Stock of Kent, England, returning from a pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Upon arrival, the baron presented the monks with a manor house, where Simon later experienced the now famous vision of Mary promising salvation to all Carmelites who wore the scapular. As the Holy Virgin handed St. Simon the woolen scapular, she spoke these words: “This shall be the privilege for you and all Carmelites, that whosoever dies wearing this garment shall not suffer eternal fire; he shall be saved. Wear the scapular devoutly and perseveringly. It is my garment. To be clothed in it means you are continually thinking of me, and I in turn, am always thinking of you and helping you to secure eternal life.” Simon’s vision led to the widespread devotion to Mary over the next centuries of wearing the scapular in her honor. In time, the Church extended this magnificent privilege to all the laity who are willing to be invested in the Scapular of the Carmelites, and who perpetually wear it.
Many Catholics are invested in the scapular at the time of their First Holy Communion; in the case of the converts the vesting concurs with their Profession of Faith. When a person is enrolled in the Confraternity of the Scapular and vested in that tiny habit of wool, the priest says: “Receive this blessed scapular and ask all the most holy Virgin that, by her merits, it may be worn with no stain of sin and may protect you from all harm and bring you into everlasting life.”
In wearing the scapular at all times we make silent petition for the Blessed Mother’s continual assistance. We share in all the prayers and good works of the Carmelite Scapular Confraternity throughout the world. Pope Pius XII often spoke of the scapular. On the 700th anniversary of the appearance of Our Lady to St. Simon Stock, Pope Pius XII referred to the scapular as “The Sign of the Consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary.” The scapular also represents the sweet yoke of Jesus Christ which Mary helps us to bear.
Blessed Claude de la Colombiere, the renowned Jesuit and spiritual director of St. Margaret Mary, said, “Because all the forms of our love for the Blessed Virgin and all its various modes of expression cannot be equally pleasing to her, and therefore do not assist us in the same degree to reach heaven, I say, without a moment’s hesitation, that This scapular is the most favored of all.” He also adds, “No devotion has been confirmed by more numerous authentic miracles than this scapular.”
-a publication of Autom