|The Brown Scapular of|
Our Lady of Mount Carmel
It is the feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.
I think of the Carmelite saints, immersed in the luminous darkness of the Mystery of God, who witness to us like prophets, after the manner of the original man of Carmel, the prophet Elijah, who was taken up to heaven in a whirlwind and a fiery chariot (2 Kings 2:11-12).
And at the center of the whirlwind is the simplicity of Mary's heart. With her Son, she lives now the promise of the New Creation, her whole humanity--soul and body--transfigured forever in the glory of God. She clothes the children of Carmel with the promise of the Kingdom woven into the very fabric of their garments; and she offers to each of us little pieces of this cloth, that we can wear to stay close to her heart.
Mary wants to be close to each of us, and she distributes abundantly among us the concrete signs of her love. In turn, as Pope Benedict XVI says, people
"...entrust to her their most intimate thoughts,
their most heartfelt wishes....
they confide to her who is all pure,
to her Immaculate Heart:
by virtue of her very purity,
man does not hesitate to reveal his weakness,
to express his questions and his doubts,
to formulate his most secret hopes and desires.
The Virgin Mary’s maternal love disarms all pride;
it renders man capable of seeing himself as he is,
and it inspires in him
the desire to be converted
so as to give glory to God."
(from the Angelus, 9/14/2008)