A. Receiving Elijah's mantle

20. The gift of Carmelite life

Individuals called to the Carmelite life recognise that the charism and the spirituality of the Order resonate in their hearts, which have been touched by the living God.

The process of formation gradually unfolds their Carmelite identity, in constant relation to the charism of the Order which they share with others, contributing to their own growth to maturity and to the development of the Order itself.

21. Participating in a long history

To enter into the Carmelite experience is to become part of an ongoing story. It is to enter into a long human, spiritual, ecclesial and apostolic tradition which has been tested by time. Although there is a need to reread, re-interpret and deepen our understanding of this tradition, this does not mean that we must start from scratch. This work of continuous revision provides individuals with many opportunities to make their own contributions, with their specific gifts, thereby enriching, developing and renewing the life of the Order.(37)

22. A common vocation

All Carmelites participate in the one and only vocation to Carmel, in various and complementary ways, according to the call and the gifts of each individual. Whether or not they are ordained, all make the same profession to religious life(38). For this reason, basic formation to Carmelite life is the same for all; it is then supplemented with appropriate and specific formation to particular ministries and services.(39)

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37 Cf. MR, 12; Constitutions, 120; Carmel: a place and a journey, 4.6.
38 Cf. Constitutions 175.2
39 Cf. Constitutions, 161-162.