Community Prayer Service

Welcome to the website of the Irish Province of Carmelites. Please take some time to explore the site, which features a wide selection of news, articles, and other spiritual and intellectual resources.

WELCOME TO THE THE IRISH PROVINCE OF CARMELITES WEBSITE

Carmelites live and work in 26 nations throughout the world.  We are teachers, retreat directors, chaplains to hospitals and prisons, in parish ministry, counsellors, spiritual directors, and missionaries.

In Ireland, Carmelites have care of one parish in Dublin: Whitefriar Street, which is also an important and historic city centre church.  People come to Whitefriar Street and to other Carmelite churches at Kinsale, Kildare, Moate, Terenure College and Gort Muire to share in the celebration of the Eucharist and other religious services.

Irish Carmelites are still committed to education at Terenure College, Whitefriar Street, Third Level and through CIBI (Carmelite Institute of Britain and Ireland), which provides distance-learning courses on Carmelite Spirituality.

Opportunities for sharing and teaching the Carmelite spiritual tradition also arise through preaching, retreats and occasions of special devotion. The Irish Carmelites established a mission in Zimbabwe in 1946. This has now developed into a vibrant presence, with many young Zimbabwean Carmelites.

St Titus Brandsma

The canonisation of Titus Brandsma took place at St Peter’s, Rome, on Sunday, May 15th. This is a great moment of joy for the Carmelite Order, as St Titus has been an inspirational figure to all who walk the Carmelite path for many years.

Latest News

Here we feature a selection of news stories from across our communities and ministries in Ireland. This section is updated regularly so please check back often for our latest news. To access an archive of all recent news stories please click here.

Annual Joint Carmelite Pilgrimage to Knock

The annual Carmelite Pilgrimage to Knock will take place on Sunday, September 10th, 2023. The pilgrimage is a great occasion of community and prayer, an opportunity for the Carmelite family and all associated with us to come together at our national shrine.

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Upcoming Carmelite Saints & Blesseds Feast Days

In this section, we feature all the upcoming Carmelite Saints & Blesseds Feast Days. In each case, we provide a very brief story of their lives and contribution both to the Order and society in general, together with a short prayer or reflection. We update this section regularly. For a comprehensive look at all Carmelite Saints and Blesseds, please see here.

Reflections on Daily Readings

In this section, we assemble all the readings for the coming week and provide a useful reflection on their main themes. We update this section on a weekly basis, so please check back regularly. To see more please visit our full year of reflections here.

July 14 – July 20, 2024

Ordinary Time – The Fifteenth Week | Readings: Sunday Cycle B; Weekday Cycle 2.

The Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

Amos 7:12-15; Psalm 84; Ephesians 1:3-14; Mark 6:7-13

In our first reading we see Amos being dismissed by Amaziah because Amaziah does not like the message which is being preached by Amos. Amos tells him that it is not his own message but God’s message and that he preaches at God’s command. In our gospel we see Jesus sending out the Twelve in pairs to preach and to cure. They do so and are successful because they do so in his name and with his authority. No matter what people may think, the message of God cannot be silenced simply because they may not like what it says or who it is who is preaching. We are the successors to the Twelve and we are the Church and so we too should proclaim the kingdom of God to the people of our own time whether they like it or not, knowing that a great reward lies in store for those who do listen and believe.

For our second reading for the next few weeks we turn to St Paul’s letter to the Christians at Ephesus. In today’s passage we are told that we were chosen by God before the world was created to be his own people. In choosing us he wants us to life in love and to be spotless in his sight. We do this by believing in him and living according to his precepts.

 

Isaiah 1:10-17; Psalm 49; Matthew 10:34-11:1

In today’s passage from the book of the Prophet Isaiah God tells his people that ritual sacrifice no longer pleases him. He wants the people to truly believe in what they are doing rather than just performing. He wants the people to be concerned with justice and peace. The Psalm takes up this theme. In the Gospel from St Matthew, we see Jesus telling his listeners that he has not come to bring peace but trouble. This is because his message calls for a conversion of heart and a new way of life which many will and, indeed, still do reject. Our readings challenge us to make this conversion and become true Christians in thought, word and deed.

 

Memorial of St Bonaventure, Bishop & Doctor of the Church

Giovanni di Fidanza was born between 1218 and 1221 in Tuscany, Italy. He joined the Order of Friars Minor and rose through the ranks becoming the Order’s seventh Minister General in 1257, devoting much time to the unity of the Order. He was approached with a view to making him Archbishop of York in northern England, but this he refused. Eventually he was made bishop of Albano, Rome, and a cardinal in 1273. One of the key mystical theologians and scholars of his time he attended the Council of Lyons in 1274 at which he died. One of his tasks at this council was the re-unification of the Latin and the Orthodox Churches which seemed to begin well but failed soon after his death. He was declared a Doctor of the Church in 1588.

Solemnity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

The Carmelite Order had its formal beginnings among a group of crusaders on Mount Carmel in Israel beside a spring used by the Old Testament prophet Elijah. In the centre of their compound they built a chapel dedicated to St Mary of the Place, which was Mount Carmel. This devotion to Mary continued and became stronger as the centuries passed and is best exemplified in the full title of the Order: The Order of the Brothers of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel. This particular feast was first celebrated in the fourteenth century and became the patronal feast of the Order early in the seventeenth century. It was recognised by Pope Paul V (1605-1621) as the feastday of the Scapular Confraternity.

 

Readings:

1Kings 18:42b-45a; Psalm 14; Galatians 4:4-7; John 19:25-27

In the first reading we see the holy prophet Elijah instructing his servant to keep watch on the sky, for the drought which had plagued the land was soon to end. When he saw the small cloud, the servant was told to go and tell King Ahab to prepare for the rains. The unnamed servant symbolises the Carmelite who is attentive to his master, who awaits his master’s word and then brings that word to others, the master being Jesus Christ. The Psalm reminds us that only those who seek after purity will be admitted to God’s house.

In the second reading, St Paul wrote to the people of Galatia that the One who redeemed them was born of a woman and was therefore subject to the Law as all humans are. Yet it was by his life, death and resurrection that the people are redeemed because, for Paul, only someone born under the Law could redeem the subjects of the Law and free them from its slavery so as to live the true life God had intended. Our Lady is the woman who gave birth to the Saviour and, through the motherhood bestowed on her at the foot of the Cross, we are all her children. We also share in the gift of the Holy Spirit which binds us in adopted sonship.

In the gospel, we see Jesus on the Cross with very few close family or friends to support him. Before he died, he looked after his mother by placing her under the care of John, the Beloved Disciple. But Mary didn’t simply become a guest in John’s house or someone for him to look out for: she became his mother and John became her son. It is a powerful reminder that we are all the children of Mary, brothers and sisters to one another and to Jesus Christ, and that we must have a care and concern for others. Mary is also seen in her sorrow as one who is silent but who still trusts in the wisdom of God even in what must have been a very dark moment in her life as she watched her Son die without dignity. For Carmelites, these readings are important for we are the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and therefore we are servants of the Lord and of his Word.

Isaiah 10:5-7, 13-16; Psalm 93; Matthew 11:25-27

The people are reminded by the prophet Isaiah in today’s first reading that kingdoms and powers rise and fall but that everything is subject to God’s power. Isaiah foretells that the King of Assyria will be used by God as the stick to discipline the people of Judah for the sins they have committed. In the Gospel, Jesus says that it is children who truly understand the message of the kingdom. By this he is saying that those with no preconceptions or theories can easily grasp the message he brings. To truly understand that message we need to have a clear mind and childlike trust.

Isaiah 26:7-9, 12, 16-19; Psalm 101; Matthew 11:28-30

Our first reading today tells us that those who live righteously before the God who judges all will have a happy life. Those who do not live by the law of God will have a troubled life. Christ calls the people to himself in the Gospel and tells them that if they believe in him he will support them. The yoke which each of us has to carry is an easy one because faith in Christ will make the burden lighter and easier to carry. True faith is what we must have and that faith is demonstrated in righteous living.

Isaiah 38:1-6, 21-22, 7-8; Psalm 38; Matthew 12:1-8

In our first reading we see that Hezekiah is now King of the southern kingdom of Judah. He is told by Isaiah that he is about to die so he prays to God and is cured because of his faith. In the Gospel, Jesus admonishes the Pharisees for being too legalistic about the Sabbath day. His disciples had been out walking with him and had picked a few heads of corn as they passed through the corn fields. What the Lord wants is mercy and not legalism for only in mercy is true faith to be seen.

Solemnity of St Elijah the Prophet

The Prophet Elijah is the greatest of the Old Testament prophets and, with Moses, is one of the two great figures of the Hebrew Scriptures who represent the Law and the Prophets. In Hebrew, his name means ‘The Lord is my God’, and this he lived out in his life and work. He defended God on Mount Carmel as the one true God against the prophets of the false god, Baal, and for which he was hunted by Queen Jezebel. He is a key figure for the Carmelite Order whose early members lived beside the spring on Mount Carmel which was used by the prophet himself. His devotion to God, his prayer life, his intimate union with God are examples for Carmelites as they strive to bring God’s presence alive in the lives of others.

 

Readings:

1Kings 19:1-9a, 11-14a; Psalm 15; 1Peter 1:8-12; Luke 9:28b-36

In our reading from the first Book of the Kings, we read that, having slain all the prophets of Baal, Elijah is now threatened by Queen Jezebel who seeks his life in retribution. In fear, he flees into the wilderness but is supported by the angel of God. When he reached the mountain, he stood before God who made himself known to Elijah, not in the form of great and wonderful power, but in the form of a gentle voice, a quiet breeze. When asked why he was there Elijah replied: ‘I am filled with a jealous zeal for the Lord of hosts’.

St Peter tells us in the second reading that what the prophets had been looking forward to was the presence of Christ on earth. That presence has now been revealed to the people who have now received the Holy Spirit for their good.

In the gospel, we read St Luke’s account of the transfiguration of the Lord. During the transfiguration he was joined by Moses who represents the Law, and by Elijah who represents the Prophets. In this way, we are shown that the authority of Jesus Christ is greater than these two pillars of the Jewish faith, and we are also reminded that their teachings pointed to his arrival. Elijah is a shining example of one who answered God’s call and gave his life to the service of God. Even his name bears witness – the Hebrew ‘Elia’ means ‘The Lord is my God’.

 

Alternative Readings:

Songs 3:1-4 (or Corinthians 5:14-17); Psalm 62; John 20:1-2, 11-18

The first reading from the Song of Songs tells of a person seeking the one whom they love. Today we can understand it as Mary Magdalene seeking the Lord. In the gospel from St John we see Mary at the empty tomb and been greeted by Christ himself, now risen from the dead. For her faithfulness to him she has been rewarded by being the first person to see the Lord after his resurrection and also by being the one to proclaim that news to the apostles.

Vocations

The Carmelite Order is present throughout the world, made up of people from many different cultures and traditions. What unites the Order is the call to live the threefold charism of prayer, community and service. Have you considered a life in the Carmelite Order?

Other Quick Links

Please see below some quick links to other sections in the site which you may find interesting.

Carmelite Library

The Carmelite Library, located in Gort Muire, Dublin, can be accessed by appointment.

CIBI

The Carmelite Institute of Britain and Ireland (CIBI) provides distanced-learning courses in Carmelite Spirituality.

Carmelite Archives

The Carmelite Archive, located in Gort Muire, Dublin, can be accessed by appointment.

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