Carmelite Spirituality for the Laity
VATICAN CITY, 30 JUNE 2006 (ZENIT)
Here is the description of the
Secular Missionary Carmel which appears in the Directory of
International Associations of the Faithful, published by the Pontifical
Council for the Laity.
* * *
Official name: Secular Missionary Carmel
History: The CMS was founded by Marelia Suárez, a young lay Catholic,
attracted to Carmelite spirituality and the missionary dynamism of
Father Francisco Palau.
In 1987 she put a proposal to the Medellin province of the Carmelite
nuns of the Sacred Heart, Colombia, to set up a lay association to share
The 16th general chapter of the order agreed to this proposal and
invited the con¬gregation to respond to the promptings of the Synod of
Bishops regarding the vocation and mission of the laity in the Church,
devoting particular attention to the comprehensive formation of the lay
faithful, and encouraging the constitution of the CMS in every country
where the congregation was present.
On March 20, 1996, the Pontifical Council for the Laity issued a decree
recognizing Carmelo Misionero Seglar as an international association of
the faithful of pontifical right.
Identity: CMS brings together lay faithful of all ages and sets out to
promote the identity and the mission of the lay person in the Church
through a commitment to discover the greatness of the Christian vocation
in the mystery of ecclesial communion; to practice a prayer life as a
sign of friendship with God and as an experience of the universality of
the Church, in the light of the word and of history; to cultivate
listening, reflecting and contemplating; to adopt an attitude of service
toward one's neighbor, paying par¬ticular attention to the urgent needs
of the Church and society; to contemplate Mary as a model, mother and
companion in a con¬stant search for communion with God and with our
fellows; to live a simple, joyful and hard-working style of life; to
work for the construction of a more just and solidarity-based society.
Formation and guidance for members of CMS focuses on the unity of life
of the lay faithful, and gives pride of place to the human, Christian
and missionary dimension according to the spirituality of Fran¬cisco
Palau, a Discalced Carmelite, preacher, spiritual director and
The members of CMS perform their apostolate in groups and individually,
bearing witness through their lives to Gospel values; they strive to
help the marginalized; and they seek to respond in practical ways to the
needs of their environment and of the Church.
Organization: CMS is organized into autonomous groups whose work is
coordi¬nated by a management board made up of a coordinator, a
sec¬retary, treasurer, and one or two members appointed by the groups.
At the national level, communion and cooperation between the groups are
guaranteed by an animation committee. The ultimate guarantor of the
association at the international level is the superior general of the
Missionary Carmelite Sisters.
Membership: CMS has about 500 members and is present in 12 countries in
Africa, Asia, Europe, North America and South America.
Web site: www.carmelmis.org
Carmelo Misionero Seglar
Via del Casaletto, 115
Tel. (39) 065-35-472 / 065-82-72-16
© Copyright 2006
Libreria Editrice Vaticana [adapted]