The Carmelite Order has its origins on Mount Carmel in Israel. Today the Order is found on all five continents and its apostolate is as diverse as that of the Church itself. An outstanding characteristic of the Order down through the centuries has been its readiness to accommodate itself to the needs of the People of God.
Each and every child is to be cherished and affirmed as a gift from God with an inherent right to dignity of life and bodily integrity which must be respected, nurtured and protected by all.
The first mention of the Carmelite Order in Ireland is in a Charter of 1271 giving royal protection for five years. The Order’s first foundations in Ireland were at Leighlinbridge, Co Carlow and in Dublin (very near the present site of Whitefriar Street Church) between 1274-1278. There followed a period of great development and by 1500 there were 25 monasteries in the country.
Throughout the centuries a particular spirituality has developed within the Carmelite Order with Mount Carmel being a constant theme along with the twin themes of Mary and Elijah. The links in the section give some flavour of that spirituality and thought both from the distant past and also from our own days. Some of the writings are available within this site while others will take you to pages outside of the site.
Prayer is an important part of life no matter what faith we profess or what walk of life we are in. As Christians and Catholics we are called upon to pray daily following the example of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Saviour. He himself, as is found in Sacred Scripture, prayed often in the synagogue and also went off on his own to pray to God the Father.
Saints & Blesseds
The Carmelite Order has been blessed throughout its history with men and women outstanding in zeal for God and the spread of his Word wherever they have found themselves. Some of these have been elevated by Mother Church to the ranks of the Blesseds and Saints. Those remembered by the Order of Carmelites on particular days in the liturgical calendar are given in this section.
As a contemplative brotherhood, we seek the face of God also in the heart of the world. We believe that God has established his dwelling place among his people, and for this reason, the Carmelite brotherhood knows itself to be a living part of the Church and of history.
The Second Vatican Council called the Church to new life in the Spirit who gives life to, unifies and moves the whole body. “Christ fills the Church, which is his body and his fullness, with his divine gifts so that it may increase and attain to all the fullness of God” (LG 7). All the baptised, centred in Christ and strengthened by God’s word and sacrament, form one community of faith, hope and love.
Launched in 2005, CIBI is an initiative designed to introduce the public to the treasures of the Catholic Church. It offers a structured, scholarly and accessible way to learn more about living in the transforming presence of God and to explore the rich heritage of Carmel.