Virgen del carmen rituals prayers

Blessing and Protection With Our Lady of Carmen

The Virgin of Carmen is one of the aspects of Saint Mary when she acted as the patroness of a monastery on Mount Carmel in Israel. In the 19th century, she was also made the patron saint of Chile. In Peru, she's known as Mamacha Carmen, and is the patron saint of the mestizo (Spanish and Indigenous) population. As you can see, many different people have taken on and petitioned this saint for aid throughout the centuries! Even if you are not Catholic, Chilean, or mestizo, you can work with her and approach her for help.

Who was the Virgin of Carmen?

The Virgin Mary became the Virgin of Carmen when she was revered by the Carmelite monks. The first Carmelites were an order of hermits that lived on Mount Carmel (or Carmen), near Haifa, Israel. The name of the mountain is said to come from Karmel or Al-Karem, which could be translated as the "Garden of God." For this reason, one of the Virgin of Carmen's other names is "most beautiful flower in God's Garden."

It is said that the Virgin of Carmen appeared to Saint Simon Stock, a monk who lived between 1165-1265. She gave him a brown scapular (a kind of short cloak), and promised him that any who died wearing it would be saved. The Carmelites consider her a perfect model of prayer, virtue, and devotion, which are all qualities they aspire to.

In Peru, there are festivals to honor the Mamacha Carmen. Musicians play instruments, choirs sing in Quechua, and costumed dancers parade through the streets to accompany the Mamacha. On the most important day of the festival, the Mamacha is held up high and carried through the streets, to scare off evil spirits and bless everyone present. As the parade ends, there is a battle with demons. The whole procession ends in a cemetery, where the participants honor the souls of the departed.

Petitioning the Virgin of Carmen

As the patron saint of the Carmelite order, Chile, and mestizo people, the Virgin of Carmen is usually petitioned for blessing, to strengthen faith, and to protect against evil. If you wish to ask her for aid, place an Our Lady of Carmen candle in a place of honor in your home. Light it, and recite the following prayer:

"Beautiful Flower, help me now in my time of need.
Holy Mary, Mother of Jesus, Queen of Heaven and earth, I humbly ask you from the bottom of my heart to aid me. [Name your request here.]
There are no powers that can withstand you.
Mary, conceived without original sin, pray for us.
Blessed Mother, I place my cause in your hands. Amen."

Allow the candle to burn for a bit as you sit and meditate on the Virgin of Carmen. When you are ready, snuff it. Repeat for seven days.

Working with the Virgin of Carmen

Part of venerating and working with the Virgin of Carmen is emulating her. She was considered a model of ideal faith and behavior to the Carmelites, and it's said she promised salvation to anyone who wore her scapular and followed her instructions on prayer and chastity.

When working with the Virgin, it helps to carry a reminder of her with you. You can do this in the form of jewelry, like a bracelet or medal. You can also carry a prayer card in your bag or wallet, or place a statue in your car and request her aid in keeping you and your loved ones safe.

In Catholicism, the Virgin of Carmen is one of many aspects of the Virgin Mary. Her festivals show her power in protecting and blessing faithful people, and defeating demons and evil spirits. If you have need of her help, petition her for aid with a loving, faithful heart.

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