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Displaying items by tag: Liturgy and Prayer Commission

Encountering the Risen Lord: Liturgy and prayer in Carmel today

Liturgical Congress – Tuesday, May 6 -Sunday, May 11, 2025

The Liturgy and Prayer Commission has organised an international liturgical congress to take place in Rome (Italy) from May 6-11, 2025, at the Istituto Madonna del Carmine “Il Carmelo”, the Carmelite center outside of Rome.

The overall theme of the Congress is: “Encountering the Risen Lord: Liturgy and prayer in Carmel today.”

Speakers will include Cardinal Arthur Roche (Prefect of the Dicastery for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments), Míceál O’Neill OCarm (Prior General), Donna Orsuto (Pontificia Università Gregoriana), Anastasia di Gerusalemme Cucca OCarm (Prioress, Monastery of St. Stephen in Ravenna), Giovanni Grosso OCarm (President of the Institutum Carmelitanum), Michael Plattig OCarm, Désiré Unen Alimange OCarm, Giuseppe Midili OCarm (Pontificio Ateneo Sant'Anselmo), Valéry Bitar OCD (Teresianum), and Sabino Chiala (Prior of the Monastery of Bose) and others.

The congress is for all those who have an interest in exploring and understanding the beauty of Carmel’s prayer and liturgy so that it can be authentically carried forward in this generation as a means of transformation.

The primary focus of the congress is more pastoral than academic. It is open to all members of the Carmelite Family, that is, friars, enclosed sisters, members of the affiliated congregations and lay Carmelites.

Taking as its point of departure the ecclesial perspective, the commission’s hope si that participants will grow in their understanding of the particular Carmelite characteristics of liturgy and prayer under various themes.

The themes will be explored will include the role of liturgy within a synodal church, celebrating the Word of God, celebrating Mary and the saints of Carmel in their feasts and the art of celebration of the liturgy (ars celebrandi). The way in which these various aspects are inculturated in the different geographic areas of the Carmelite Family will also be explored.

In the course of the week, participants will spend a day in the city of Rome making, in particular, a pilgrimage to the Holy Door of St. Peter's Basilica, Vatican City which will have been opened for the Jubilee Year.

Further details will be available in the coming months including the cost for participants and how to reserve a place.

Published in Announcements (CITOC)

The General Commission for Liturgy and Prayer developed a document on the development of shrines and friaries in our Order. These houses offer a way of building up the church that is different to the work of parishes. With a view to continuing reflection on this question the General Council signed the commission's letter. It is being distributed to the Carmelite Family for further reflection. This is considered a step towards developing this ministry more, one in which our Carmelite identity can be much more to the fore. This may lead to a reflection on suggestions as to how our parishes should be run so that we give our full Carmelite contribution to the Church also through our parishes.

We are happy to attach the letter for the beginning of your reflection on this important topic.
Read the letter  pdf here (208 KB)
Published in Announcements (CITOC)

The International Carmelite commission for Liturgy and Prayer met at the General Curia, Rome from May 23-27, 2022. Having held several virtual meetings over the past two years, this was their first face-to-face gathering since the General Chapter of 2019.

Following on from their virtual meetings, the members dedicated each of the five days to a specific topic: shrines, liturgical texts, initial discussions for a liturgical congress in 2024, liturgical formation, prayer. During the week, the commission also had the opportunity to meet online with four Carmelite scholars engaged with or beginning liturgical studies: Luca Zerneri (ACV), Elijah Januaris Mutinda (Ken), José Lucas Do Nascimento (Flum), Daniele di Filippo (Ita). It is hoped that this fruitful conversation will continue into the future.

Much of the work these days centered on the present situation with regard to liturgical texts, their translation and publication (supplements to the Missal and the Liturgy of the Hours) in addition to the material received from the previous commission (2013-19) regarding the Saturday Memorial of Our Lady and the Carmelite Funeral Rites. Initial work has begun on liturgical and prayer formation for a Ratio Studiorum. A preliminary project in ongoing formation was also initiated. Finally, the commission prepared a document addressing our many Shrines throughout the Order.

The commission will meet again in October (online) of this year and again in May 2023 (in person). The members present were (in picture below left to right): John Keating. O. Carm., (Hib), Alexander Vella O. Carm., (Mel), Désiré Unen Alimange O. Carm., (It/Cong), Richard Byrne, O. Carm., (Hib), and Sr. Nerina de Simone, CMSTBG. Robert Manik O. Carm., (Indo), was unavoidably absent.

Published in Announcements (CITOC)
Friday, 29 October 2021 13:54

Meeting Of The Liturgy And Prayer Commission

On Saturday, October 16, 2021, the Liturgy and Prayer Commission of the Order met for their 10th meeting since the General Chapter in 2019. All the meetings, so far, have been held via Zoom. It is hoped to have a first physical meeting in March of next year, expected to last a full week.

The commission has addressed a number of issues over these past two years. The previous liturgy commission (2013-2019) left two important documents ‘The Ritual for the Third Order’ (a completed document) and ‘The Profession Ritual for Religious Profess in the Order’, which the present commission has been working towards a final approval in the near future. Much of this work has been detailed work regarding language and translation.

Considerable time was taken up on the discussion on liturgical scholarship and formation within the Order. The Prior General responded positively to a letter from the commission in this regard. The members will work towards collaboration with the Formation Commission in this area. There are now three scholars doing post graduate work in liturgy. The groundwork for a pastoral liturgical congress in the next few years is being worked on, also a ‘colloquium’ within the coming year.

It has noted that this remit is twofold, both liturgy and prayer. The Liturgical Calendar is expected to be approved by the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments in the near future. The document of Pope Francis, Traditionis Coustodes and an Address recently by the Prefect of the Congregation, Archbishop Arthur Roche at Sant’ Anselmo were discussed. Among others topics discussed were, the dignity of liturgical books, shrines and pilgrimages, and the giving of the habit in initial formation (CON 162).

The members of the Commission are: Richard Byrne, O. Carm (Curia), John Keating, O. Carm., (Hib), Robert Manik, O. Carm. (Indo), Sr. Nerina de Simone, CMSTBG, Désiré Unen Alimange, O. Carm. (Ita/Congo), Alexander Vella, O. Carm. (CISA/ Mel). The next meeting will take place on November 6, 2021.

Published in Announcements (CITOC)
Thursday, 28 January 2021 09:41

Liturgy and Prayer Commission

Global Plan of the General Council 2019-2025

Richard Byrne, O.Carm.

Carmelites live their life of allegiance to Jesus Christ in a contemplative attitude exercised in a life of prayer, fraternity and service in the midst of the people. The orientation towards contemplation is not merely one of these elements of our charism; it is the dynamic ele­ment which unifies them (Con. 14).
Prayer is the way we relate to God both as individuals and as community. In prayer we become open to God who gradually transforms us through all the events of our lives, whether great or small (Con. 18).
The Rule of Carmel puts liturgical life at the centre of our community life both in practice and symbolically (RIVC, 39).

In the midst of a globalised and pluralist world, our faithful commitment to prayer allows us as Carmelites to witness to the “living and mysterious presence of God” (Con. 18). Our prayer reminds us that the life of Carmel is Christocentric. Permeating through every aspect of a Car­melite’s life, prayer not only nourishes our spiritual lives, but also through gradual transformation enriches our fra­ternal life and makes us better able to serve in the Church with compassion in a spirit of solidarity with our sisters and brothers.

While prayer can assume many forms, Carmelites re­gard liturgical prayer – especially communal – as a central part of our overall spiritual life (Liturgical Congress, 2018, Final Message). Intimately linked with our personal prayer, our liturgical prayer is the visible sign of the Order at prayer (RIVC 39). Our contemplative way of living keeps our liturgical celebrations always Paschal with a Resurrec­tion orientation. Consequently, formation in liturgy is vital for Carmelites and is not just about “liturgical studies for ministry or knowledge of the rubrics, but about a frater­nal celebration of who we Carmelites are” (RIVC, 39). Car­melites are particularly nourished in the Word and in the Eucharist.

As the bread is broken and shared, the daily Eucharist builds our Carmelite community, not just symbolically, but as a sign of our “sharing in the mystery of God and with the community of those in need” (RIVC, 39). In the Eucha­rist we offer our daily lives in total sacrifice in an intimate union with Christ’s paschal mystery (Con. 73).

Pondering the Word is an essential element of our char­ism and Carmelite identity and Lectio divina is given a prominent role in our prayer life (Con. 85). The communal celebration of the Liturgy of the Hours, especially with the faithful, is central to our identity.

The Carmelite way is marked by silence (RIVC, 36). In­deed, our spirit of contemplation can be greatly nurtured by silent prayer. In addition, retreats, days of recollection and the reading of the writings of our Order are important for Carmelites.

Alongside our devotion to the Saints of Carmel, Carmel­ites especially venerate the Blessed Virgin Mary and, con­sequently, our Marian shrines are held in high regard not only as centres of the Word and liturgical life but also as centres of evangelisation, solidarity and places of encoun­ter with those of other faiths and none (Con. 89-93).


  1. To continue updating the Liturgical Rites and Books of the Carmelite Order (including but not limited to the Carmelite Ritual, the Lectionary, the Liturgy of the Hours) as well as seeking their approval, translation and publication;
  2. To continue to prepare additional materials from Car­melite authors for the Carmelite Office of Readings for the Blessed Virgin Mary on Saturday and on other days of particular devotion to Our Lady of Mt Carmel;
  3. To seek a collaborative project with the General Com­mission on Formation regarding (a) the liturgical prepa­ration of the brothers in formation, (b) liturgical stud­ies from the Carmelite tradition as part of ongoing for­mation courses for the Order, and (c) the promotion of good preaching (General Chapter Decree, 2019);
  4. To promote an uptake in the study of Liturgy at an ad­vanced level in dialogue with the relevant people (Gen­eral Chapter Recommendation, 2019);
  5. To explore and promote ways of celebrating the Liturgy from a Carmelite perspective;
  6. To explore ways in which the shrines of the Order could be fostered at an Order level;
  7. To organise congresses and meetings that foster the li­turgical and prayer life of the members of the Carmelite Family.


  • Richard Byrne, O.Carm.
  • Désiré Unen Alimange, O.Carm. (Congo)
  • Pius Robert Manik, O.Carm. (Indonesia)
  • Alexander Vella, O.Carm. (Malta)
  • John Keating, O.Carm. (Ireland)
  • Nerina de Simone, CMSTBG

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