One of the signs in the tradition of the Church from many centuries
ago is the Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. It is a sign approved by the Church and accepted by the Carmelite Order
as an external sign of love for Mary, of the trust her children have in her, and of commitment to live like her.
The word scapular indicates a form of clothing which monks wore when they were working.
With the passage
of time, people began to give symbolic meaning to it: the cross to be borne every day as disciples and followers of
Christ. In some religious orders, such as the Carmelites, the Scapular turned into a sign of their way of life. The Scapular
came to symbolize the special dedication of Carmelites to Mary, the Mother of God, and to express trust in her motherly protection
as well as the desire to be like her in her commitment to Christ and to others. Thus it became a sign of Mary.
IT IS AN ASSURANCE OF SALVATION
"WHOSOEVER DIES CLOTHED IN
THIS (SCAPULAR) SHALL NOT
SUFFER ETERNAL FIRE."
This is Mary's Promise
made July 16, 1251
to Saint Simon Stock
Your SCAPULAR, then should take on the deep meaning for you. It is a rich present brought down from
OUR LADY HERSELF
"Wear it devoutly and perseveringly," she says to each soul, "it is my garment. To be clothed in it
means you are continually thinking of me, and I in turn, am always thinking of you and helping you to secure eternal life."
St. Alphonus says:
"Just as men take pride in having others wear their livery, so the most holy Mary is pleased when
we her servants wear her capular as a mark that they have dedicated themselves to her service, and are members of the Family
oof the Mother of God."
The Scapular Medal
Many Catholics may not know that it is the wish of our Holy Father, the Pope, that the SCAPULAR MEDAL
should not be worn in place of the CLOTH SCAPULAR without sufficent reason. Mary cannot be pleased with any one who substitutes
the medal out of vanity, or fear to make open profession of religion. Such persons run the risk of not receiving the Promise.
The medal has never been noted for any of the miraculous preservations attributed to the BROWN CLOTH SCAPULAR.
True Devotion to Mary
CONSISTS IN THREE THINGS
VENERATION - CONFIDENCE - LOVE
Without saying to Mary that we venerate her, love her and trust her, we tell her these things every
moment of the day, by simply wearing the scapular.
The Scapular then Is a Prayer
Our Lord taught us to say the "Our Father." Mary taughtus the value of the Scapular. When we use the
value of the scapular. When we use it as a prayer, Our Ladydrawsus to the Sacred Heart of her Divine Son. It is well, therefore,
to hold the scapular in thehand, ,while addressing Our Lady. A Prayer uttered thus while holding the mystical scapular is
a perfect as a prayer can be. It is especially sc in TIME OF TEMPTATION that we need the powerful intercession of God's Mother.
The evil spirit is utterly powerless when a scapular-wearer, besides his silent devotion, faces temptation calling upon mary.
"If thou hadst recommended thyself to me, thou
wouldst not have run
into such danger," was Our
Lady's gentle reproach to Blessed Alan.
Because you love Mary's scapular
VENERATE IT OFTEN
Pope Benedict XV granted an indulgence of 500 days each time the scapular is kissed. MARY'S
MOTHERHOOD is not limited to Catholics, it is extended to ALL MEN. Many miracles of conversion have been wrought in favor
of good non-Catholics who have been induced to practice the scapular devotion.
"I wanted to know if Mary really and truly interested Hersel in me. And in the scapular She has
given me the most tangible assurance. I have only to open my eyes. She has attached Her protection to this scapular: 'Whosever
dies clothed in this, shall not suffer eternal fire'"
- Blessed Claude de la Colombiere
When the clouds of tempation overshadow the day
May the light of Mount
Carmel shine down on my way;
When the long road is ending, may I go to rest
With Mary's brown scapular over my breast.
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