What is a Lay Carmelite?

Lay Carmelites (Third Order)

Lay Carmelites (historically known as the Third Order) are lay people who, in response to a special call from God, freely and deliberately promise to live the evangelical life in the spirit of the Carmelite Order and under its direction. Within their state in life, they seek to live in the presence of God 24 hours a day. In fact, the entire Carmelite family, in its task of living out its consecration to Christ, seeks to live in the presence of the living and true God who, in the person of Christ, lives in our midst; it is a family that seeks divine intimacy.

Lay Carmelites, imbued with the spirit of the Order, try to live its charism in a silent listening to the Word, making their whole life a prayer by allowing themselves to be caught up by the Spirit for the wonderful works that God accomplishes and which require their commitment and worthwhile contribution.

Lay Carmelites, according to the constant tradition of Carmel, are to cultivate in the greatest degree possible prayer in all its forms: mental prayer and aspirational prayer, as well as the traditional practices. Above all they should learn from the Virgin how to praise the Lord and to rejoice in God their Savior in their ordinary daily life.

For more information about the Lay Carmelites, please contact:

From Carmel's Call, a Manual for Members of the Lay Carmelite Order, ed. by Rev. Aloysius Sieracki, O.Carm., The Carmelite Press, Aylesford

Carmelite Spirituality