Our Life

Image of Discalced Carmelite Monastery

Main Aspects of Our Life

  • Celebration of the holy Sacrifice of the Mass and the Sacraments
  • Praying the Liturgy of the Hours, which is the Prayer of the Church
  • Total oblation of self through solemn vows of poverty, chastity & obedience
  • Cultivating an interior life of communion with God through unceasing prayer
  • Praying for the universal Church, our local diocese, all priests, and the salvation of every soul
  • Fidelity to our Holy Father and the teaching of the Magisterium
  • Devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, our Mother, Patroness, and model
  • Observance of papal enclosure for contemplative nuns
  • Wearing the traditional Carmelite habit
  • Monastic fasting and abstinence from meat
  • Community life where all are sisters to one another, sharing joys and sorrows, under motherly guidance of prioress
  • Horarium (schedule) that balances prayer, work, recreation, and solitude
  • Manual labor in solidarity with the poor

Glimpses of Carmel

“On the mountain of Carmel in silence, in solitude, in a prayer that never ends–for it continues through everything–the Carmelite already lives ‘with God alone’ as in Heaven. So she hungers for silence that she may always listen, always penetrate further His infinite Being. She is identified with Him whom she loves. She finds Him everywhere; through everything she sees His radiance!”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

“A Carmelite is a soul who has gazed on the Crucified One; who has seen Him offering Himself as a Victim to His Father for souls and, recollecting herself in this great vision of the charity of Christ, has understood the passionate love of His soul, and has wanted to give herself as He did!”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity
The cell of Holy Mother Saint Teresa

“Love, consume my entire being for Your Glory that it may be poured out drop by drop for Your Church.”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

“To be the bride of Christ! ‘Bride,’ I must live all that this name implies of love given and received, of intimacy, of fidelity, of absolute devotion! To be a bride means to be given as He gave Himself; it means to be sacrificed as He was, by Him, for Him… It is Christ making Himself all ours and we becoming ‘all His!’ To be a bride means to have all rights over His Heart… It is a heart-to-heart exchange for a whole lifetime… It is to live with… always with… It means to rest from everything in Him, and to allow Him to rest from everything in our soul! It means to know nothing else than to love, to love while adoring, to love while making reparation, to love while praying, while asking, while forgetting oneself; to love always in every way!”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity
Image of Carmelite Nuns receiving Jesus in Holy Communion

“‘To be a bride’ means to have eyes only for Him, our thoughts haunted by Him, our heart wholly taken over, wholly possessed, as if it had passed out of itself and into Him; our soul filled with His soul, filled with His prayer, our whole being captivated and given. It means, by keeping our gaze always fixed on His, to discover His least sign, His least desire; it means to enter into all His joys, to share all His sadness. It means to be fruitful, a co-redeemer, to bring souls to birth in grace, to multiply the adopted children of the Father, the redeemed of Christ, the co-heirs of His glory.”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

“Finally, to be taken as bride, a mystical bride, means to have ravished His Heart to the extent that, forgetting all distance, the Word pours Himself out in the soul as in the bosom of the Father with the same ecstasy of infinite love! It is the Father, the Word and the Spirit possessing the soul, deifying it, consuming it in the One by love.”

~ St. Elizabeth of the Trinity

“Mental prayer is nothing else than an intimate sharing between friends. It means taking time frequently to be alone with Him who we know loves us.”

~ St. Teresa of Jesus
Discalced Carmelite monastery grounds of Sioux City, Iowa

Behold, I will lead her into the desert and there I shall speak to her heart.”

Nestled in the Loess Hills

“It is our holy duty to be as conscientious as possible in observing the precept of enclosure, to lead without hindrance a life hidden with Christ in God.”

~ St. Teresa Benedicta (Edith Stein)
Come to prayer, sisters, come to praise the Lord!
Sunshine aka Sunny (with a chance of rain…)

“The Lord is my strength! He makes my feet like those of a deer and enables me to go upon the heights.”

Hab 3:19
Ascend… to Mount Carmel!

“The scapular is a sign of consecration to our Lady’s Immaculate Heart.”

~ Sister Lucia, OCD

“The vocation of the Carmelite is a call from the Divine Lover, a call to the soul whom He has chosen to give herself more completely to Him, not only to be united with Him in a closer bond of love, but to work with Him in a special manner for the salvation of souls.

~ G. J. MacGillivray

“To become an enclosed Religious is not, as many think, to selfishly escape from the world’s burden. On the contrary, it is to take up the world’s burden. The Carmelite retires from the world in order to work for the world more effectually. Her motive is the very opposite of selfishness, for it is self-giving love — love of her Divine Lord, and love of all the world. Her work is to cooperate with the Passion of Christ offering herself with Him and in Him for the salvation of sinners. It is ‘to love for those who do not know how to love, to pray for those who do not know how to pray, and to suffer for those who do not know how to suffer.”

~ G. J. MacGillivray