Charism

It is to me, however, that you have come for a rule of life in keeping with your avowed purpose, a rule you may hold fast to henceforward.
Rule, chapter 3

 

We follow the Rule of St. Albert written for the first Carmelites who were hermits on Mt. Carmel. At the heart of this brief Rule is the admonition to pray: Each one of you is to stay in his own cell or nearby, pondering the Lord’s law day and night and keeping watch at his prayers unless attending to some other duty. (Chapter 10) The contemplative life is rooted in the following of Jesus who “often retired to deserted places and prayed.” (Lk 5:16) This preference for silence and solitude allows the brothers to respond in love to Carmel’s call to constant prayer, for the praise of God and for the salvation of the world. Our Hermitage is a school of prayer in the ancient Carmelite tradition. A life of intensive prayer is nothing other than one way of living and expressing the Paschal Mystery of Christ.
Our charism is eremitical. Not in individual hermitages, but very much in the spiritual hermitage of the heart, the Carmelite Brothers seek to console Our Lord at prayer. For this reason, we choose to call our dwelling “the Hermitage”, as a reminder of that silence, solitude, and cloister that are chosen by those who go into the wilderness to do spiritual battle for love. For it was love of his brothers and sisters that drove Christ into the wilderness to pray and resist the temptation to evil. (Lk 4:1-2)

We support ourselves by manual labor such as weaving rugs in our workshop or caring for guests and retreatants; some of us may engage in a limited sacramental ministry in local parishes, but we give preference to manual labor like Carmel’s Protector, St. Joseph. His life of labor, shrouded in silence, bears an aura of deep contemplation.

Community or Fraternal Life at Annunciation Hermitage is rooted in the love of God and is interiorized through an on-going process of moving away from self and towards a genuine love of God and neighbor. The expression and proof of our brotherhood is charity in a life lived together under the tutelage of the Virgin Mary, Mother of God and our Sister. A few aspects of community life are:

The Three Vows of poverty, celibate chastity, and obedience are at the heart of all consecrated life and free us for a complete and total following of Christ. More than just a renunciation, the vows enable us to give of ourselves as did Christ, the Man for others. The vows are a share in His Passion

 

The Religious Habit, consisting of the brown tunic, scapular, and capuche with cincture and white mantle is our sign of consecration and witness to the Gospel. Wearing it may be our manner of preaching. It is worn joyfully, for the scapular is seen as a sign of Our Lady’s loving care and protection of the Carmelite.

Hospitality is a constant tradition where there is fraternal life. All guests are received in the place of Christ whose solitude embraced all humanity. From time to time there are individual retreatants and days of reflection for groups.