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Friars- Introduction

The Carmelite Order is included by the Church among the clerical institutes. It is composed of friars who profess the three vows of obedience, poverty and chastity, and who share a common purpose: to live the consecrated life according to the spirit of Carmel.

The Order is structured into Provinces, General Commissariats, and houses under the direct jurisdiction of the Prior General. (Consititutions O.Carm. no.174,177)

Each entity has houses of formation in accordance with the phases which the candidate has to go through. 

The pre-novitiate: Generally lasts from six months to one year.

The novitiate: Lasts one year, after which the candidate makes his religious profession.

The scholasticate: This is the time when the candidate, after his profession, intensifies and deepens his experience of following in the footsteps of Jesus Christ in the Order and the Church. It includes the philosophical-theological studies and the specialization in the various sciences, the formation to the different ecclesial and specific offices of the Order, the preparation of those who are candidates to the priesthood.

The principles, indications and programmes for initial and ongoing formation are explained in the Ratio Institutionis Vitae Carmelitanae (Carmelite Formation: A Journey of Transformation), published by the General Curia of the Carmelites in Rome, 2000.


As Carmelites We live our life of allegiance to Jesus Christ and to serve Him faithfully with a pure heart and a clear conscience through a commitment to seek the face of the living God (the contemplative dimension of life), through prayer, through fraternity, and through service (diakonia). These three fundamental elements of the charism are not distinct and unrelated values, but closely interwoven. 

All of these we live under the protection, inspiration and guidance of Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, whom we honor as "our Mother and sister."