Thursday July 16. 

According to tradition, Simon Stock, the aged general of the Carmelite Order, had appealed to Our Lady for her protection over his oppressed congregation.  In response on this day in 1251 she appeared to him at Cambridge, England and, presented to him the brown scapular, which became the prototype of all the others.  Mary assured him that all who were duly invested with it faithfully with filial love an confidence in her power and goodness, and obtain the grace of final perseverance and her motherly protection at death.

The Carmelite Order claims at least a moral descent from Elias and the ancient hermits on Mount Carmel in Palestine.  In the 13th century its members had to flee to Europe to avoid being massacred by the Saracens, and under the generalship of Simon, the monks charged from a solitary to a community life, and some of the ancient,  stringent rules of fasting and silence were relaxed.  Since the great reform instituted by St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross in the 16th Century there exists one branch of Calced Carmelites who follow the mitigated rule of Pope Eugene IV, and one of Discalced Carmelites who still adhere to the strict, primitive rule promulgated by St. Albert of Jerusalem in 1206.

“Oh how long since would the world have been destroyed, had not Mary sustained it by her powerful intercession.” – St. Fulgentius.  

God Bless.  Happy feast of Our Lady of Mount Carmel