OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL
Mark, Chapter 6, Verse 20
Herod FEARED John, knowing him to be a righteous and holy man, and kept him in custody. When he heard him speak he was very much perplexed, yet he liked to listen to him.
Christ asks us to not be afraid; remember that those who are controlled by the devil are always deathly afraid. Therefore, trust in Him and remember that according to the Talmud God says to us: With thy very wounds I will heal thee. If you are unhappy, it is because of sin, therefore seek the healing that Christ gives in the sacrament of confession and receive joyfully the Holy Eucharist.
Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel
THE Church celebrates on this day the feast of the Scapular of Mount Carmel. The scapular, which derives its name from the Latin word scapula’s, meaning shoulders, is a dress which covers the shoulders. It is mentioned in the rule of St. Benedict as worn by monks over their other dress when they were at work, and it now forms a regular part of the religious dress in the old Orders. But it is best known among Catholics as the name of two little pieces of cloth worn out of devotion to the Blessed Virgin over the shoulders, under the ordinary garb, and connected by strings. The devotion of the scapular, now almost universal in the Catholic Church, began with the Carmelites. The history of its origin is as follows: During the thirteenth century the Carmelite Order suffered great persecution, and on July 16, 1251, while St. Simon Stock, then general of the Order, was at prayer, the Blessed Virgin appeared to him, holding in her hand a scapular. Giving it to the saint, she said,” Receive, my dear son, this scapular of thy Order, as the distinctive sign of my confraternity, and the mark of the privilege which I have obtained for thee and the children of Carmel. It is a sign of salvation, a safeguard in danger, and a special pledge of peace and protection till the end of time.” “Whosoever dies wearing this shall be preserved from eternal flames.” It is much to be wished that people should everywhere join this confraternity, for the honor of Mary and for the salvation of souls, by a life fitted to that end. In order to have a share in the merits of the sodality every member must:
1. Shun sin, and, according to his state of life, live chastely.
2. Say every day, if possible, seven times, Our Father, Hail Mary, and Glory Be to the Father.
3. Strive to serve God by venerating Mary and imitating her virtues. These rules, it is true, are not binding under penalty of sin, but the breach of them deprives us of all merit; and is not this something to be taken into account? “He who soweth sparingly shall also reap sparingly.” (n. Cor. ix. 6).
Prayer. O God, Who hast honored the Order of Carmelites with the particular title of the most blessed Virgin Mary, Thy Mother, mercifully grant that, protected by her prayers whose commemoration we this day celebrate with a solemn office, we may de serve to arrive at joy everlasting.
EPISTLE. Ecclus. xxiv. 23-31.
As the vine, I have brought forth a pleasant odor: and my flowers are the fruit of honor and riches. I am the mother of fair love, and of fear, and of knowledge, and of holy hope. In me is all grace of the way and of the truth: in me is all hope of life and of virtue. Come over to me, all ye that desire me, and be filled with my fruits. For my spirit is sweet above honey, and my inheritance above honey and the honeycomb. My memory is unto everlasting generations. They that eat me, shall yet hunger and they that drink me, shall yet thirst. He that hearkeneth to me shall not be confounded: and they that work by me shall not sin. They that explain me shall have life everlasting.
Explanation. The Church applies this epistle to Mary, thereby encouraging us fervently to honor the blessed Mother of God, in whom the Eternal Wisdom dwelt bodily, and through whom He was given to us, that by her intercession our understanding may be enlightened, our will strengthened, and we be inspired with fresh zeal to practice ourselves, and to prevail on others to practice also, whatever is chaste, becoming, and holy.
GOSPEL. Luke xi. 27, 28.
And it came to pass as He spoke these things, a certain woman from the crowd lifting up her voice said to Him: Blessed is the womb that bore Thee, and the paps that gave Thee suck. But He said: Yea rather, blessed are they who hear the word of God, and keep it.
Things to Do
· If you have not already done so, have a priest enroll you in the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, or popularly known as the "Brown Scapular" and begin wearing it as a sign of your love for Our Lady.
· Wearing the Brown Scapular is not an automatic guarantee of salvation. It is not a magical charm, nor is it an excuse to live in a way contrary to the teachings of the Church. (see Catechism, no. 1670.)
· See the Directory on Popular Piety the Brown Scapular is included in the document as a wonderful pious practice. The history of Marian piety also includes "devotion" to various scapulars, the most common of which is devotion to the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Its use is truly universal and, undoubtedly, it is one of those pious practices which the Council described as "recommended by the Magisterium throughout the centuries."
· Pope John Paul II has worn the scapular for a long time. See the Holy Father's talk on the Scapular of Carmel, A Treasure for the Church.
· For the definitive treatment on the brown scapular, read The Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel: Catechesis and Ritual.
· The Blessed Virgin's scapular should remind us that Christians have an apostolate against current extremes and extravagances in modes of dress. Clothes are a symbol of the person. Like the Christian heart, dress must be chaste and simple, for one judges the interior from the exterior. It should not be necessary to add that special attention be given this matter when preparing for church attendance. Examine yourself on how well you reflect Christian modesty in your dress and if you are a parent, how well you ensure that your children are modestly dressed.
· In New York City in East Harlem is one of the oldest festivals in America for Our Lady of Mount Carmel. See Our Lady of Mount Carmel Shrine of East Harlem – since 1881. Also Williamsburg in Brooklyn, NY annually holds the Festival of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel and St. Paulinus of Nola (Festa Del Giglio). It is unique to see a scene that one would expect in Europe unfolding on the street of a major East coast city. You can view a You Tube clip right here. Also look around your area for Italian parishes, maybe one named after Our Lady of Mount Carmel? Many times, the parish will host wonderful festivals in her honor.
· Watch this You Tube video to learn more about devotion to Our Lady of Mt. Carmel.
· Learn more about St. Simon Stock and the Brown Scapular.
Scapulars and Medals
Medals have been part of Catholic life since the early centuries of the Church. The most popular is the cross; even Protestants wear crosses minus the corpus while Catholics wear a crucifix. It is also noted that in the miraculous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe she is wearing a cross about her neck. We wear scapulars, too, which are mini habits of the religious orders. Pope John Paul II said that the scapular is a powerful precisely because it is a “habit” in every sense of the word, both a uniform and a pattern of good belief and good behavior. Since 1910, Catholics have been permitted to wear a scapular medal in place of a cloth scapular.
Mount Carmel Coffee
This coffee ice is cool and refreshing for this summer feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Stir the sugar into the warm water until it is melted and add the lemon juice, stirring for about five minutes. Add the coffee, strain, place in a freezing tray, and freeze, stirring frequently, until it becomes a mush.
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 2 cups warm water
- 1/2 cup lemon juice
- 2 cups strong coffee
Serve the ice slush in glasses, topping the glasses of ice with any of the following:
- whipped cream (add vanilla, sugar, almond extract, etc.)
- liqueurs (Amaretto, Kahlua, Baileys, etc.)
- chocolate curls or small pieces
- candied citrus peel
Catechism of the Catholic Church
PART TWO: THE CELEBRATION OF THE CHRISTIAN MYSTERY
SECTION TWO-THE SEVEN SACRAMENTS OF THE CHURCH
1210 Christ instituted the sacraments of the new law. There are seven: Baptism, Confirmation (or Chrismation), the Eucharist, Penance, the Anointing of the Sick, Holy Orders and Matrimony. the seven sacraments touch all the stages and all the important moments of Christian life: they give birth and increase, healing and mission to the Christian's life of faith. There is thus a certain resemblance between the stages of natural life and the stages of the spiritual life.
1211 Following this analogy, the first chapter will expound the three sacraments of Christian initiation; the second, the sacraments of healing; and the third, the sacraments at the service of communion and the mission of the faithful. This order, while not the only one possible, does allow one to see that the sacraments form an organic whole in which each particular sacrament has its own vital place. In this organic whole, the Eucharist occupies a unique place as the "Sacrament of sacraments": "all the other sacraments are ordered to it as to their end."
· July 16 California Wine Festival (Santa Barbara, California)
Head to one of the biggest wine festivals under the sun! Celebrate wine harvest season this July with a visit to California wine country. Held this year in Santa Barbara, the annual California Wine Festival showcases vintage wines, along with gourmet appetizers including artisan breads and cheeses. Cheers!
· Litany of the Most Precious Blood of Jesus
· Let Freedom Ring Day 10
 Goffine’s Devout Instructions, 1896
 Hahn, Scott, Signs of Life; 40 Catholic Customs and their biblical roots. Chap. 36 Scapulars and Medals.