Province of The Netherlands
In 1996 the Province of The Netherlands celebrated its first centenary. This may seem strange, since the Order had houses in that country for centuries, but they formed part of the Lower German Province. After the northern Protestant Provinces of The Netherlands declared themselves independent of Spain (1581) the Carmelite houses there ceased to exist.
In 1652 a foundation was made at Boxmeer in the Catholic enclave of the Counts van den Bergh by the noted Carmelite, Daniel of the Virgin Mary. The house thus belonged to the Flemish Province.
Boxmeer survived the suppression of the Flemish Province under Napoleon but was not allowed to accept novices. When this ban was lifted in 1840, only three old friars remained. The community not only was soon reconstituted but in 1855 founded Zenderen. The two houses with Straubing became the Germano-Holland Province in 1879. On the feast of the Immaculate Conception, 1896, the General Council of the Order established the Province of the Netherlands.
In the course of time the Province of the Netherlands became one of the largest and most flourishing in the Carmelite Order. It has distinguished itself especially in promoting the spread of the Order. From 1904 it assisted in the restoration of the Rio de Janeiro Province (Brazil). In 1923 it began a mission in present Indonesia which has since become a Province. In 1924 it repossessed the convent of Mainz and revived its mother Province of Lower Germany. Since 1958 it has been active in the Philippines, which turned to be a general commissariate.
At present the Province has about 90 religious working in of the Netherlands, Brazil and Indonesia.
For further information: Province of the Netherlands
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