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80/2018 – 16 – 11

The 5th Assembly of ALACAR (Latin American Association of Carmelites) was held in the "Archdiocesan House María de Altagracia" in Santo Domingo (Dominican Republic) from November 6 to 11. This assembly is held regularly every three years in collaboration with the Discalced Carmelites. The theme of this assembly was "The martyrs of yesterday for today's Latin American Carmel: Edith Stein, Titus Brandsma and Oscar Romero."

The lecturers were the two superiors general, Fernando Millán Romeral, O.Carm., and Saverio Cannistrà, OCD., Sister Sandra Henríquez, Carmelita Misionera from Chile and Bishop Oswaldo Escobar, OCD., of Chalatenango in El Salvador.

The meeting was attended by 120 people from almost every Latin American country, including religious men and women and lay people. Likewise, there was a small representation of the contemplative Carmelite nuns. In addition to the conferences and the group reflection, there were several very significant celebrations. For example, on the 9th, the Prior General led a solemn celebration of the Eucharist in the Cathedral of Santo Domingo, the first cathedral on the American continent, in which he expressed the desire to continue as Carmelites to serve the people of God in Latin America. In this sense, the group sent a letter of support to Bishop Silvio Baez, OCD., Auxiliary Bishop of Managua, on account of the difficult circumstances that are being experienced in Nicaragua.

Taking advantage of the presence of both General Superiors in Santo Domingo, on that same 6th of November, in the morning, a meeting took place in the Monastery of Santa Teresa in the capital with a large representation of nuns from the various monasteries of the Caribbean. The meeting consisted of a reflection on the Instruction "Cor Orans" and on other aspects of the cloistered life in Carmel. More than forty nuns participated in an atmosphere of joy and fraternity.

From the office of CITOC, we thank both General Councillors (P. Raúl Maraví O.Carm y P. Francisco Javier Mena, OCD), as well as the Carmelites in the Dominican Republic for their excellent work that ensured the success of this 5th ALACAR

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As Carmelites We live our life of allegiance to Jesus Christ and to serve Him faithfully with a pure heart and a clear conscience through a commitment to seek the face of the living God (the contemplative dimension of life), through prayer, through fraternity, and through service (diakonia). These three fundamental elements of the charism are not distinct and unrelated values, but closely interwoven. 

All of these we live under the protection, inspiration and guidance of Mary, Our Lady of Mount Carmel, whom we honor as "our Mother and sister."