Being the Cradle Catholic that I am, many times I find myself judging, questioning, wondering, about things done in our Churches.
I know that each Archdiocese has their own little nuances. Now, from country to country, even more so!
There have been many occasions where I ask about the differences about Customs or Traditions between Canada, the US and Mexico.
Today, on the Feast day of Nuestra Señora del Carmen, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, another question sprouted within me.
I have not had a chance to ask, but I have found some links that speak of the Traditions that I am familiar with when it comes to the Investiture of the Scapulary of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel.
I grew up being told that being Consecrated to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel was not to be taken lightly. The Imposition of the Scapular meant that one received many Indulgences and Privileges, but there were also responsibilities.
First of all, only a Priest could Invest us in the Brown Scapular. There was a Consecration from us to Our Blessed Mother and then we lived up to our Responsibilities in order to gain the Privileges.
Among the Responsibilities were to abstain from meat on Wednesday’s and Saturday’s. To Pray 3 Hail Mary’s Daily, and the Most Difficult it seemed to me at the time, was to live your life in an Authentic Christian manner. Living your life according to the Gospel and receiving all your Sacraments.
Well, if anyone is interested in all the Indulgences and Privileges that you can obtain from the Investiture of the Brown Scapular here are two links. One in English from the Sisters of Carmel. And the other in Español (it is much more detailed and comprehensive).
It is probably a good idea for me to let you know what the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel is NOT since it is only on the Spanish Site:
It is NOT:
- A Magical or Lucky Charm that will protect you.
- An automatic Guarantee of Salvation.
- A way out or an excuse to not live the Exigencies, the Demands, of a Christian Life.
It IS a sign:
- That has been Approved by the Church for Seven Centuries.
- Which Represents the Commitment to Follow Jesus as Mary
- Be Open to God and His Will
- Guided by Faith, Hope and Love
- Aware and Near to the Needs of Others
- Praying at all times and Discovering Our Lord Present in all Occurences
- That Introduces us into the life of the Carmelite.
- That fills us with Hope of finding Ourselves Before God in the Eternal Life with the Help and the Protection and Intercession of Mary.
That being said,
Bendicenos Y Protegenos Madre Nuestra, Virgen del Carmen.
Thanks for this. It is a complete tragedy that such practices almost disappeared after Vatican II. Of course, as you point out, it is necessary to understand what these kind of practices are and what they are not. I am very happy that the Holy Father is catechizing on indulgences and encouraging people to attain them. They are not, as far too many suppose, relics of superstitious past.