This commemoration was first instituted as early as the fourteenth century, signalling the approval of the Carmelite Rule a hundred years before. It is related to the wearing of the brown Scapular, a devotion practised by many Catholic today who are not formally Carmelites.
In giving the scapular to St Simon Stock on 16 July 1251, Our Lady promised: ‘Receive, My beloved son, this habit of thy order: this shall be to thee and to all Carmelites a privilege, that whosoever dies clothed in this shall never suffer eternal fire …. It shall be a sign of salvation, a protection in danger, and a pledge of peace’.
May Our Lady of Mount Carmel pray for us, and may we know her protection this day.