Discalced Carmelite Friars

Province of St. Therese

a Silent Lamp

A poem by Gerald N. Alford in tribute to Thomas MertonI am a lamp,a silent lamp,burning in the space and timegiven as my life.Not with steady flame I burn,but under influencesgood and bad,I flicker.But yet I burn,and give some light.
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Easter Lilies

p.p1 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 8.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px 'Book Antiqua'; color: #000000; -webkit-text-stroke: #000000} p.p2 {margin: 0.0px 0.0px 8.0px 0.0px; font: 14.0px 'Book Antiqua'; color: #000000; -webkit-text-stroke: #000000; min-height: 17.0px} span.s1 {font-kerning: none} Ah. Such joy! Strewn across the sanctuary!White lilies, blaring their trumpets in a brilliant white chorus; continuing for
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Lent has begun: Mission—be filled with the Holy Spirit

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Keep Praying, Keep Heart, Keep Faith

What does it mean, to "pray always and not lose heart?" So many connections surface, but the focus that recently jumped out was the connection between the praying, and not losing heart. I'm reminded of what is stated in the introduction to the section on Prayer in the Catechism: "According to Scripture, it is the heart that prays...The heart is the dwelling place where I
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Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Elijah

"Planted in the house of the Lord, They will flourish in the courts of our God." (Ps 92:13)Celebrating both the Solemnities of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel and of Elijah - within four days' time - springs forth an image of what they share on the most hidden to manifest levels.Reading the above verse from Psalm 92, on the day before Our Lady of Mount Carmel, I was struck by the invisible but essential aspect
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'Flourish'

It was mid-morning as IScurried about the house.Make the bed.  Sweep the floor.Oh look at those books open, on The desk – need to read those.What is the office calling for?I feel His gaze rest on my wrist.       His curved fingers reaching            proposing to lead me in a Feather step.      And I glide, free-spinning
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BELIEVE

"BELIEVE." "I do believe." What does it mean, to "believe?" "Blessed is she who believed that the Lord's words to her would be fulfilled." (Luke 1:39). St. John Paul II calls this verse a "key" to understanding Mary in his encyclical, "Mother of the Redeemer." "HEAR, O Israel... you shall love the Lord your God with all your HEART...". The call to hear, listen to what is
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Mustard Seed Faith – Part 2

Jesus' response to the apostles' request in Luke 17:5, to "Increase our faith," is one that has continued to intrigue me in recent months. It has brought a continuing refrain: "If you had faith the size of a mustard seed..."It has struck me during this time how it seems that Jesus infers they (myself, included!) are needing more insight on what faith is, and it's related to the minuscule size of that
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Mustard Seed Faith – Part 1

        The gospel passages that include the phrase, "faith the size of a mustard seed" have not particularly kept my attention over the decades of my life. If anything, I've noticed in myself a sort of sense of passing over it, or wondering, why faith should be such a challenge at times, especially since only (at first glance) such a seemingly minuscule
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Love in a Battle-field

What is love?  Not an original question surely, yet I do still ask myself this question.  What does love look like?  As a Catholic, my mind immediately turns to the crucifix; THE image of perfect love.  Jesus, the son of God, nailed to an instrument of torture upon which he died to procure the salvation of my soul and that of all mankind.  Gazing upon a crucifix is an opportunity
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A Reflection

A Reflectionfor our community study of Fr. Marc Foley’sReflections on John of the Cross’s Ascent of Mount Carmel,        [from p.115, quoting St. John of the Cross:]        To understand the nature of this union [with God], one should first know that God sustains every soul and dwells in it substantially, even though
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Be Not Afraid!

The air, the airwaves, the papers are filled withfearful voices proclaiming doom in one form or another.It seems to me a squandering of the soul to worry about,to make anxious provisions for, some possible dangerwhich could happen in the future, but which is not now a reality. Listening to doomsayers, giving ear to loud voices proclaiming(but not apparently having prophetic authority to proclaim) doom,and
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The Little Way of Environmental Healing

We are faced with enormous environmental problems that harm people, and destroy property and wildlife. Everyone needs to help solve these.St. Therese of the Child Jesus teaches us the Little Way of Spiritual Childhood. She felt she could not perform the big mortifications of the saints. We also feel we cannot go back to a lifestyle without cars and modern conveniences. St. Therese, though, was determined
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Hopeful Living

Our Holy Father’s remarks in Philadelphia about “love in the little things,” along with being able to recognize the miracle of noticing the Holy Spirit at work, actually tie together for me his visit, and the preparation these past five years for celebrating Holy Mother Teresa’s V Centenary of her birth.  Recalling the reading her works during this time brings home to me
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White Martyrdom

        “It is not idle allegory to say that the wise virgins processing to meet the Bridegroom are the Church in Eucharistic celebration. The celebrants are those who live day in and day out, knowing that the Truth will appear. This explains the palpable radiance a pastor sees in some very old people who beam at the prospect of seeing God face- to-face. They
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Easter

Thankfulness, confidence, joy in the Holy Trinity, Is ever-growing to eternity –  With exaltation knowing no bounds: Jesus, I praise you, trust in you, To the glory of the Father … ABBA!  My heart cries out, “You are my Father – FOREVER!” Holy Spirit, teach me, pour into me The fear that casts out all fear,* That leads me to
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Unnatural Joy

!!!????!!!!!!Wait.  What just happened?!!Darkness, quiet, emotions subdued,Stillness, waiting, a match sizzlesWood pops and hisses withLife and anticipation.Senses like a held breath,All quiet.Exult! You heavenly choirs Exult!Christ the Lord is risen, sound the trumpet of salvation!No. Wait. Slow down. I’m not ready.40 days? Chocolate, wine, Facebook?No! Let me do something worthy of this.No. 
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Other Blogs by Secular Discalced Carmelites:

  • Bethany Hang Out – a blog by Shawn Chapman, OCDS. Shawn is a member of the Austin community of Secular Discalced Carmelites. She also writes regularly for ATX Catholic online.
  • Elizabeth Explores Writing – a blog by Elizabeth Ogilvie, OCDS. Elizabeth is a Secular Discalced Carmelite of the U.S. Central Province.
  • Gray Rising – a blog by Tim Bete, OCDS. Tim is a member of the community of the Secular Discalced Carmelites in Dayton, OH.
  • Hearth Cake and a Jug of Water – Mary Bellman, a member of the Dallas OCDS community, sends out a daily Carmelite quotation by e-mail. Send her an email at bellman.mary@gmail.com if you would like to be added on her mailing list and receive these Carmelite quotations.
  • Illumina, Domine – a blog by Pat Enk, a Secular Discalced Carmelite of the U.S. Central Province.