Lay Carmelite Formation Commission

The TOC National Council in the Philippines, through the National Formation Team, specifies the formation program by providing a manual to serve as a guide for all TOC communities.[1] The following is the outline or syllabus of the program of formation for TOC Philippines designed by the National Formation Team. This is based on the outline given by the General Commission for the Carmelite Laity. 

Initial formation in Carmel generally takes six years: six months of Aspirancy, six months of Postulancy, two years of Novitiate, and three years of Temporary Profession leading to Final Profession.[2] On-going formation should continue for life.[3] 

A. Initial Formation in Carmel 

Formation Syllabus for the Aspirancy 

Lesson 01: Orientation

Lesson 02: God Comes to Meet Man

Lesson 03: Christ Jesus: Mediator and Fullness of All Revelation

Lesson 04: The Church in God’s Plan

Lesson 05: The Sacramental Economy

Lesson 06: Prayer in the Christian Life 

Formation Syllabus for the Postulancy 

Lesson 01: History of the Order – 1

Lesson 02: History of the Order – 2

Lesson 03: Three in One: The Order of the Carmelites

Lesson 04: The Brown Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel

Lesson 05: The Prophet Elijah: Father of the Order

Lesson 06: The Blessed Virgin Mary: Queen and Mother of Carmel

Lesson 07: Saints of Carmel: The Carmelite Doctors of the Church

Lesson 08: Vocation to Carmel: A Personal Call

Lesson 09: Stewardship/Discipleship 

Formation Syllabus for the Novitiate 

Novitiate – I 

Part 1: The Rule 

Lesson 01: The Rule of Saint Albert – 1

Lesson 02: The Rule of Saint Albert – 2

Lesson 03: The Rule of Saint Albert – 3

Lesson 04: The Rule of the Third Order of Carmel

Lesson 05: The National Statutes of the TOC Philippines 

Part 2: Carmelite Spirituality and History 

Lesson 06: The Institute of the First Monks

Lesson 07: The Teresian Reform

Lesson 08: The Reform of Touraine

Lesson 09: The Call to Prayer

Lesson 10: The Call to Community

Lesson 11: The Call to Ministry

Lesson 12: Lectio Divina and the Liturgy of the Hours 

Novitiate – II 

Part 3: Great Figures of the Order 

Lesson 01: Prophet of Fire: Elijah Confront King Ahab

Lesson 02: Prophet of Fire: Elijah Hides in the Wadi Cherith

Lesson 03: Prophet of Fire: Elijah Stays with the Widow

Lesson 04: Prophet of Fire: Elijah’s Victory in Carmel

Lesson 05: The Virgin Mary: Patroness

Lesson 06: The Virgin Mary: Sister

Lesson 07: The Virgin Mary: Mother

Lesson 08: Carmelite Devotions

Lesson 09: Saint Mary Magdalene de Pazzi

Lesson 10: Saint Andrew Corsini

Lesson 11: Saint Albert of Trapani

Lesson 12: Blessed Elizabeth of the Trinity 

Formation Syllabus for the Temporary Promise 

Temporary Promise – I 

Part 1: The Word of God 

Lesson 01: The Canon of the Old Testament

Lesson 02: The Canon of the New Testament

Lesson 03: Introduction to the Gospels and Spiritual Reading 

Part 2: The Magisterium of the Church 

Lesson 04: Deus Caritas Est (God is Love)

Lesson 05: Spe Salvi (Saved by Hope)

Lesson 06: Sacramentum Caritatis (Sacrament of Charity)

Lesson 07: Redemptionis Sacramentum

Lesson 08: Lumen Gentium (Dogmatic Constitution on the Church)

Lesson 09: Christifideles Laici 

Part 3: Theological Studies 

Lesson 10: Moral Conscience

Lesson 11: The Virtues and Sin

Lesson 12: Lukewarmness: The Devil in Disguise 

Temporary Promise – II 

Part 4: Carmelite Spirituality 

Lesson 01: Prophet of Fire: Elijah’s Flight to Horeb

Lesson 02: Prophet of Fire: The Zeal of Elijah

Lesson 03: Prophet of Fire: The Call of Elisha

Lesson 04: Prophet of Fire: The Assumption of Elijah

Lesson 05: Vocal Prayer

Lesson 06: Mental Prayer

Lesson 07: Contemplative Prayer

Lesson 08: Silence and Solitude

Lesson 09: Detachment

Lesson 10: Obstacles and Distractions to Prayer

Lesson 11: Introduction to the Interior Castle

Lesson 12: The First Mansion 

Temporary Promise – III 

Part 4: Carmelite Spirituality 

Lesson 01: The Second Mansion

Lesson 02: The Third Mansion

Lesson 03: The Fourth Mansion

Lesson 04: The Fifth Mansion

Lesson 05: The Sixth and Seventh Mansion

Lesson 06: Conditions for Growth in Prayer

Lesson 07: The Carmelite Promises and the Vows

Lesson 08: The Promise of Chastity

Lesson 09: The Promise of Poverty

Lesson 10: The Promise of Obedience

Lesson 11: Authenticity of Discernment – 1

Lesson 12: Authenticity of Discernment – 2 

B. Ongoing Formation in Carmel 

Final Promise – I 

Part 1: Saint John of the Cross 

Lesson 01: John of the Cross: Portrait of God’s Love

Lesson 02: Introduction to the Writings

Lesson 03: An Awakening of God

Lesson 04: Blockages (The Active Night of the Sense)

Lesson 05: At the Threshold of Contemplation (The Passive Night of the Sense)

Lesson 06: The Way of Pure Faith (The Active Night of the Spirit)

Lesson 07: Nailed to a Cross: Not My Choice (The Passive Night of the Spirit)

Lesson 08: On the Mountaintop (Union of the Likeness of Love) 

Part 2: Saint Therese of the Child Jesus 

Lesson 09: The World and Works of St. Therese

Lesson 10: Family, Childhood and Adolescence

Lesson 11: The Carmel of St. Therese

Lesson 12: From Discovery to Offering 

Final Promise – II 

Part 2: Saint Therese of the Child Jesus 

Lesson 01: Coincidences, Contrasts and Common Good

Lesson 02: Encounter with God through the Word and Mary

Lesson 03: Love Overflows

Lesson 04: The Doctrine of Spiritual Childhood 

Part 3: Blessed Titus Brandsma 

Lesson 05: Life and Witness of Fr. Titus

Lesson 06: Challenges in the Life of Fr. Titus

Lesson 07: Life in the Spirit

Lesson 08: Mysticism: Aim in Life

Lesson 09: Trust in God

Lesson 10: Love of Neighbor

Lesson 11: Simplicity

Lesson 12: Joy 

Final Promise – III 

Part 4: Prayer Life in Carmel 

Lesson 01: Life of Prayer: Saint Mary Magdalene de Pazzi

Lesson 02: Life of Prayer: The Touraine Reform

Lesson 03: Life of Prayer: Ven. Marie Petijt, Elizabeth of Jesus, and Emmanuel de Casta

Lesson 04: Life of Prayer: Ven. Maria Angela Virgili, Liberata Ferrarons and Carmen de Sojo 

Part 5: Mary and the Saints of Carmel 

Lesson 05: Our Lady in the Prayer Life of St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi

Lesson 06: Our Lady in the Mystical Experience of Ven. John of Saint Samson

Lesson 07: Our Lady in the Life of Bl. Mary of Jesus

Lesson 08: Our Lady in the Life and Writings of Ven. Michael of St. Augustine and Ven. Marie Petijt 

Part 6: Spiritual Life 

Lesson 09: Discerning Growth

Lesson 10: Spiritual Direction

Lesson 11: Presence and Witness

Lesson 12: Prayer and Sacrifice

Lesson 13: Extraordinary Favors 

After three years in Final Promise and undergoing this formation syllabus, the final professed TOC may apply for solemn profession of vows. Ongoing formation still continues whether the final professed TOC undertook the solemn profession of vows or not. The themes of formation after three years in final promise shall revolve in the general themes given by the International Commission of the Carmelite Laity and will be under the discretion of the director of formation.


[1] National Statute #42

[2] National Statute #43

[3] National Statute #44


10 Comments on “Lay Carmelite Formation Commission”

  1. Geraldine Lodewyke Says:

    Rev. Fr Deeny was with us last month and he mentioned that the OCDS constitution in book from waws what was used by your members. I weoul like to know whether you would be able to send us approx 25 copies by post and what the cost would be so tat we could remit the money to you. I was just brousing thru your web site and cane across your formation programme. I have been looking for something like this as I responsible for formation of our small group. Would it be possible for me to obtain a copy of the material as stated in your guide. I would most grateful if this could be sent too and the cost of material and postage would be sent as per the details given by you.

    Thanking you

    May God bless you


  2. Geraldine Lodewyke Says:

    I am in charge of formation of our lay members in Sri Lanka. As we do not have Carmelitr Friers in Sri Lanka we feel that we lack proper formation. Having seen the syllubus above I wonder whether it waould be possible to obtain a copy of course material so that we may too make use of it in Sri Lanka. Further if the booklst of teh constitution is available would it be possible to obtain copies for our members. Please let me know tat cost as well as postage charges if the copies of the formation programm as well as the constitution are available

    Thanking you.

    May God Bless you


  3. Edgar G. Villan Says:

    I hope there would be a lay carmelite community in parañaque preferably in the MHC Parish

  4. Annaliza P. Cruiz Says:

    hi, i’m annaliza cruiz,and i’m 19 years old and i am interested to join the spiritual group of lay carmel.i’m still studying as of now ,i would like to inquire if you have a branch of lay carmel here in Visayas

  5. G.L. Says:

    I am selling a set of books (4-volume with 1 volume in two parts) which chronicles the History and Development of the Carmelite Order and an excellent source of information on anything about Carmel. Further, this book is a good formation material and reference for the members of the Third Order of Carmel.

    Please see the details of each book:

    THE CARMELITES: VOL 1. A History of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Ref: 569
    Smet, Joachim, O.Carm. CA. 1200 until the Council of Trent. Revised edition, 1988 400pp PBK

    THE CARMELITES: VOL 2. A History of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Ref: 563
    Smet, Joachim, O.Carm. The Post Tridentine Period 1550-1600. 1976 editon, 359pp PBK.

    THE CARMELITES: VOL 3. Part 1. A History of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Ref: 557
    Smet, Joachim, O.Carm. The Catholic Reformation 1600-1750. 1982 edition, 418pp PBK

    THE CARMELITES: VOL 3. Part 2. A History of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Ref: 1224
    Smet, Joachim, O.Carm. The Catholic Reformation 1600-1750. 1982 edition, (pages 419-852) 434pp PBK

    THE CARMELITES: VOL 4. A History of the Brothers of Our Lady of Mount Carmel Ref: 551
    Smet, Joachim, O.Carm. The Modern Period 1750-1950. 1985 edition, 439pp PBK

    Brief Information about the Author:

    Fr. Joachim Smet O.Carm.
    Fr. Joachim Smet, O.Carm. (1915-2011) was one of the leading historians of the Carmelite Order. In addition to being a founding member and President of the Institutum Carmelitanum in Rome and editor of Carmelus, a journal of Carmelite Studies, Fr. Joachim was a gifted writer. he is well-known for his four-volume work The Carmelites and his Life of Saint Peter Thomas. Among his other works: Familiar Matter of Today-Poems (2007), The Mirror of Carmel: A Brief History of the Carmelite Order, (2011), various publications on Carmelite Nuns, Carmelite Liturgy, Carmelite Libraries of Spain and Portugal and the Carmelites of Medieval England.

    This book is available for sale at the following website:

    I am selling all 5 books for Php5,000.00. All books are brand new and were purchased from the USA. If you checked the website I provided, each book costs $39.00 and if converted to Philippine Peso, each book is at Php1600.00.

    For more information you may send your inquiry at:

    email address:
    cell phone number: 0917 503 7650

    This books are not available for sale anywhere in the Philippines and this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to acquire this book at discounted price.

  6. Bobet B. Salvador Says:

    Bobet B. Salvador Says:

    May 16, 2014 at 5:00 pm

    hi, I’m bobet b. Salvador, 43 yr old and im interested to join the spiritual group of lay carmel. I’m already working as a teacher in a public school here in Valenzuela. I would like to inquire if you have a branch of lay carmel near Valenzuela. tnx

    • Hi Bobet. we don’t have yet any TOC community in Valenzuela City. The nearest one that you can attend to is at Project 6, near SM North Edsa. If from the Diocese of Malolos, the nearest is at the Guiguinto Monastery at the ICS Seminary. If interested, I can refer you to the community at your choice. Another option is that you can form a small community in your area if you can find at least 3 others who are interested.

  7. bobet b. salvador Says:

    thank you for respńding to my letter, im interested to attend in proj 6 session nd

  8. bobet b. salvador Says:

    thank you for respońding to my letter, im interested to attend in proj 6 session nd form a community here in polo valenzuela in the near future, at present im an active member of legion of mary in our parish.

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