Marian Devotion in Carmel

The greatest devotion to Mary is to celebrate the mysteries of her life in the Liturgy - both the Mass and the Divine Office. The feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel on 16th July is our principal feast of the year, but there are also many other important feasts of Mary that have a special place in our liturgical calendar.


1 January: Mary, Mother of God

11 February: Our Lady of Lourdes

25 March: Annunciation

31 May: The Visitation

June: Immaculate Heart of Mary

16 July: Our Lady of Mount Carmel

15 August: Assumption

8 September: Our Lady's birthday

15 September: Our Lady of Sorrows

7 October: Our Lady of the Rosary

21 November: Presentation of Our Lady

8 December: Immaculate Conception

Saturday is traditionally a day of special devotion to Mary, and when no other feast falls on that day, we always celebrate a Votive Mass and Office in honour of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Every Saturday we solemnly sing the Salve Regina in honour of Our Lady, holding lighted candles and wearing our mantles (white cloaks).

Stained Glass window of Our Lady of Mt Carmel
Mary has a special place in our prayer every day. Each evening we always sing a hymn to her after Night Prayer, feeling her motherly presence and love at the end of the day. The traditional Carmelite hymn to Mary is "Flower of Carmel" - there are many versions of this hymn, this is the English translation:

Flower of Carmel,
blossoming, bearing one.

light of heaven.
mother of God's dear Son,
vine and virgin;

Gentle parent,
pure beyond human love,
bless your children,
star shining far above
this world's ocean.

Brown Scapulars

Of course, the Brown Scapular which is worn by each of us as part of our Carmelite habit, is a sign of our relationship to Mary and her protection of us. We carry out a solemn blessing of scapulars and enrollment of any person who wishes each year on the Feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel -  16th July, and we prepare for the feast by a special novena.

Sister praying rosary
The Rosary is a popular prayer, not only for Carmelites, but it plays an important part in our daily life of prayer. It helps us to grow in love for Mary and her Son Jesus as we meditate on the mysteries. Normally only one set of mysteries is prayed at a time. Meditation on each mystery is accompanied by saying one Our Father, 10 Hail Mary's and one Glory be...

The Joyful Mysteries
The Annunciation of the Lord
The Visitation of Mary to Elizabeth
The Birth of the Lord
The Presentation in the Temple
The Finding of the Child Jesus in the Temple
The Sorrowful Mysteries
The Agony in the Garden
The Scourging at the Pillar
The Crowning with Thorns
The Carrying of the Cross
The Crucifixion
The Luminous Mysteries
The Baptism of Jesus
The Wedding at Cana
The Proclamation of the Kingdom
The Transfiguration
The Institution of the Eucharist
The Glorious Mysteries
The Resurrection
The Ascension
The Descent of the Holy Spirit
The Assumption of Mary
The Coronation of Our Lady in Heaven

The gentle presence of Mary is found in her caring for all the Church, in her continous prayer for us, 'now and at the hour of our death' (Hail Mary). We can become aware of her presence if we think of her now and again, speak to her, ask for her guidance, and consider how she would act in the circumstances in which we may find ourselves. We can go further and enjoy and relax in her presence.

Over the centuries, Mary has been a Mother and Sister to all Carmelites. We also remember the saints of the family of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel who are now in the glory of heaven, who, like Mary, are our models of life and protectors. You can read about our Carmelite saints on the next page.

Read about our devotion to Carmelite saints                               Back to the main Prayer page
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