As an apostolate, Annunciation Hermitage requested and received permission from the Prior General for the establishment of a local chapter of the Scapular Confraternity of Our Lady of Mount Carmel. The Scapular Confraternity is an association of the faithful who love Our Lady and strive for the perfection of charity in their lives in the spirit of the Carmelite Order. This fraternal bond of association is signified by the wearing of the Brown Scapular, the habit of the Order. Confraternity members participate in the life of the Carmelite Order and its spiritual benefits by an intimate communion of thought, ideals, and works together with Our Lady of Mount Carmel. If possible, members of our Scapular Confraternity who wish to do so meet periodically at Annunciation Hermitage under the leadership of the Carmelites with whom members share a relationship of fraternal support. At these meetings Confraternity members build a sense of fraternity, study Carmelite spirituality, and discuss practical ways of living it, all in union with Our Lady. Meeting is not a requirement for membership in this chapter, although membership in the Diocese of Winona, Minnesota is. Members are asked to wear the Brown Scapular as a sign of their belonging to her and their willingness to imitate her obedience to the Word of God; and to set aside time for being with God in prayer, frequent participation in the Eucharist, daily recitation of the Liturgy of the Hours, or some Psalms, or the Rosary. The Confraternity’s solemn feast is the Commemoration of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mount Carmel (July 16th).
The Church grants generous indulgences to Confraternity members on the feasts of the great Carmelite saints through the year provided the usual conditions for plenary indulgences are fulfilled. The Brown Scapular signifies a two-fold relation of Our Lady’s loving protection for us and our commitment to follow her in living the Christ-life as we clothe ourselves in His virtues.