PROVINCE OF ST. THERESE
Mary, Mother of Carmel
Totus marianus est Carmelus (Carmel is all Mary's)
This traditional saying indicates the thoroughly Marian character of the Carmelite Order. Carmelites honor Mary as Patroness, Mother, and "Sister in the Faith."
The earliest Carmelites on Mount Carmel (13th Century) lived an heremetical life in community, with a marked tendency to interiority and an impassioned aspiration for familiarity and intimacy with God. They recognized in the mystical life of Mary a fulfillment of their own aspirations. Thus a uniquely Carmelite expression of Marian spirituality gradually developed.