It is a gift to you from your Heavenly Mother.
“WHOSOEVER DIES IN THIS GARMENT SHALL NOT SUFFER ETERNAL FIRE.”
– promise of Our Lady to St. Simon Stock on July 16, 1251
In the year 1251, in the town of Aylesford in England, Our Lady appeared to St. Simon Stock, a Carmelite. She handed him a brown woolen scapular and said, “This shall be a privilege for you and all Carmelites, that anyone dying in this habit shall not suffer eternal fire.” In time, the Church extended this magnificent privilege to all the laity who are willing to be invested in the Brown Scapular of the Carmelites and who perpetually wear it.
True devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary consists in three things: VENERATION, CONFIDENCE AND LOVE. By simply wearing the Scapular, we can tell her every moment of the day that we venerate her, love her and trust in her protection.
The Scapular Is a Silent Prayer
As Our Lord taught us to say the Our Father, Our Blessed Mother taught us the value of the scapular. When we use it as a prayer, Our Lady draws us to the Sacred Heart of Her Divine Son. It is good, therefore, to hold the scapular in the hand. A prayer offered while holding the Scapular is as perfect as a prayer can be. It is especially in time of temptation that we need the powerful intercession of God’s Mother. The evil spirit is utterly powerless when the wearer of a scapular faces temptation, calling upon the Holy Virgin in this silent devotion. “If you had recommended yourself to me, you would not have run into such danger,” was Our Lady’s gentle reproach to Blessed Alan de la Roche, one of her devoted servants.
Enrollment in the Confraternity
To be eligible for the scapular promise, one must be enrolled in the Brown Scapular Confraternity. This is a simple ceremony which can be performed by any priest (see below). The members of the Confraternity have the added benefit of sharing in all the spiritual benefits of the Carmelite Order.
According to a statement made by the Carmelite Fathers at the National Scapular Center, every priest now has the right to invest the faithful in the Brown Scapular and to substitute the rosary in lieu of the Little Office (see below).
The scapular must be 100% wool without plastic casing and should not be pinned or affixed to clothing. It is worn over the head, under one’s clothes, with one square of wool hanging on the chest and the other on the back. Pictures are not necessary.
The Sabbatine Privilege
The Blessed Virgin of Mount Carmel has promised to save those who wear the scapular from the fires of hell; She will also shorten their stay in purgatory if they should pass from this world still owing some debt of punishment.
This promise is found in a Bull of Pope John XXII. The Blessed Virgin appeared to him and, speaking of those who wear the Brown Scapular, said, “I, the Mother of Grace, shall descend on the Saturday after their death and whomsoever I shall find in purgatory I shall free so that I may lead them to the holy mountain of life everlasting.”
The Blessed Virgin assigned certain conditions which must be fulfilled:
1.Wear the Brown Scapular continuously.
2.Observe chastity according to one’s state in life (married/single).
3.Recite daily the Little Office of the Blessed Virgin OR Observe the fasts of the Church together with abstaining from meat on Wednesdays and Saturdays OR With permission of a priest, say five decades of Our Lady’s Most Holy Rosary OR With permission of a priest, substitute some other good work.
Pope Benedict XV, the celebrated World War I Pontiff, granted 500 days indulgence for devoutly kissing your scapular.
The Morning Offering
O my God, in union with the Immaculate Heart of Mary (here kiss the scapular as a sign of your consecration), I offer Thee the Precious Blood of Jesus from all the altars throughout the world, joining with It the offering of my every thought, word and action of this day. O my Jesus, I desire today to gain every indulgence and merit I can, and I offer them, together with myself, to Mary Immaculate, that she may best apply them to the interests of Thy most Sacred Heart. Precious Blood of Jesus, save us! Immaculate Heart of Mary, pray for us! Sacred Heart of Jesus, have mercy on us!
The Popes and the Brown Scapular
Pope Leo XIII: “The Carmelite Scapular’s nobility of origin, its extraordinary spread among Christian peoples for many centuries, the spiritualizing effects produced by it and the outstanding miracles worked in virtue of it render the Scapular of Carmel commendable to a wondrous degree.”
Pope Pius XI: “In consideration of the munificent goodness of the heavenly Mother towards her children, it surely ought to be sufficient merely to exhort those who belong to the Scapular Confraternity to persevere in the holy exercises which have been prescribed for the gaining of the indulgences to which they are entitled.”
Pope Pius XII: “All Carmelites, whether they live in the cloisters of the First or Second Orders or are members of the Third Order or of the Confraternities, belong to the same family of our Most Blessed Mother and are attached to it by a special bond of love. May they all see in this keepsake of the Virgin herself a mirror of humility and purity; may they read in the very simplicity of the Garment a concise lesson in modesty and simplicity; above all, may they behold in this same Garment, which they wear day and night, the eloquent expressive symbol of their prayers for divine assistance.”
Pope John XXIII: He spoke “of the Mother of God who is honored in this Church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Devotion to her becomes a necessity; towards Our Lady of Mount Carmel we are drawn with a most tender, yet irresistible, attraction.”
Pope Paul VI, speaking of Marian devotions, especially of the Scapular, says “Let the faithful hold in high esteem the practices and devotions to the Blessed Virgin approved by the teaching authority of the Church. It is Our conviction that the Rosary of Mary and the Scapular of Carmel are among these recommended practices. The Scapular is a practice of piety, which by its very simplicity is suited to everyone.”
THE ROSARY AND THE SCAPULAR ARE INSEPARABLE.
𝘼 𝙋𝙍𝘼𝙔𝙀𝙍 𝙏𝙊 𝙊𝙐𝙍 𝙇𝘼𝘿𝙔 𝙊𝙁 𝙈𝙏. 𝘾𝘼𝙍𝙈𝙀𝙇
O most beautiful Flower of Mount Carmel, fruitful vine, splendor of Heaven, Blessed Mother of the Son of God, Immaculate Virgin, assist me in this my necessity.
O Star of the Sea, help me and show me herein that you are my Mother.
O Holy Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven and earth, I humbly beseech you from the bottom of my heart, to succor me in this my necessity.
There are none that can withstand your power. O show me herein that you are my Mother.
O Mary, conceived without sin, pray for us that have recourse to thee. (3 times)
Sweet Mother, I place this cause in your hands. (3 times)
We invoke God’s mercy and justice on those who have blasphemed God’s Holy Name, those who slander and bear false witness, and those who commit murder or justify murder as a means for fighting criminality in our country.
𝘼𝙘𝙩 𝙤𝙛 𝘾𝙤𝙣𝙨𝙚𝙘𝙧𝙖𝙩𝙞𝙤𝙣 𝙩𝙤 𝙊𝙪𝙧 𝙇𝙖𝙙𝙮 𝙤𝙛 𝙈𝙤𝙪𝙣𝙩 𝘾𝙖𝙧𝙢𝙚𝙡
O Mary, Queen and Mother of Carmel, I come today to consecrate myself to Thee, for my whole life is but a small return for the many graces and blessings that have from God to me through Thy hands.
Since Thou regardest with an eye of special kindness those who wear Thy Scapular I implore Thee to strengthen my weakness with Thy power, to enlighten the darkness of my mind with Thy wisdom, to increase in me faith, hope and charity that I may render, day by day, my debt of humble homage to Thee.
May Thy Scapular keep Thine eyes of mercy turned towards me and bring me Thy special protection in the daily struggle to be faithful to Thy Divine Son and to Thee.
May it separate me from all that is sinful in life and remind me constantly of my duty to behold Thee and clothe myself with Thy virtues. From henceforth I shall strive to live in the sweet companionship of Thy spirit, to offer all to Jesus through Thee and make my life the mirror of Thy humility, charity, patience, meekness and prayerfulness.
O dearest Mother, support me, by Thy never-failing love that I, and unworthy sinner, may come one day to exchange Thy Scapular for the wedding Garment of heaven and dwell with Thee and the saints of Carmel in the kingdom of Thy Son. Amen.
CONSECRATION TO OUR LADY OF MOUNT CARMEL
O Mary, Queen of all Saints,
who art the beauty of Carmel,
how sweet it is for me to venerate thee
under the title of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
Even from the days of the Apostles,
thou hast been honoured under this mystic title; I am filled with joy as I consecrate myself to thee, O holy Mary, most unworthy though I am to be thy servant, yet touched by thy motherly care for me and longing to serve thee, in the presence of my Guardian Angel
and the court of Heaven, I choose thee this day to be my Queen, my Advocate, and my Mother,
and I firmly purpose to serve thee ever more
and to do what I can that all may render faithful service to thee.
Therefore, most devoted Mother,
through the Precious Blood thy Son poured out for me, and through the promises of thee as Our Lady of Mount Carmel, I beg thee, deign to take me among thy clients and receive me as thy servant forever.
O beauty of Carmel,
glory of Libanus,
thou purest of lilies,
mystic rose in the garden of the Church,
I salute thee!
O Virgin of virgins,
be mindful of me in my misery,
and show thyself my Mother.
Shed upon me ever more and more
the living light of that faith
which made thee blessed;
inflame with that Heavenly love
wherewith thou didst love thy dear Son, Jesus Christ.
Do thou, Mother of God,
who hast such power and might,
obtain for me from blessed Jesus,
the Heavenly gifts of humility, chastity, and meekness,
which were the fairest ornaments of thine Immaculate soul.
Do thou grant me to be strong
in the midst of the temptations and bitterness
which so often overwhelm my spirit.
Aid me in every action,
and beg for me the grace, never,
by word or deed or thought,
to be displeasing in thy sight and that of thy most holy Son.
Think of me my dearest Mother,
and desert me not at the hour of death.
(Here, you kiss your Scapular..)
Holy Virgin of Mount Carmel, Our Lady of the Scapular, pray for us!