Having made his temporary vows, the now professed friar commences studies. He begins with the study of Philosophy and afterwards of Theology, each lasting about four years with a year between both for the Year of Renewal and Integration. The post-novitiate formation readies the student for solemn vows in the Carmelite Order and prepares him for ministry. During this time, student grows into a mature relationship with God through prayer and living God’s word in a contemplative fraternity in the midst of God’s people. He continues to become incorporated into the Order, growing in identification with it. He is prepared academically and equipped practically for ministry. As he concludes his study of Theology and if he is to be a priest, he is then ordained to the diaconate and then the priesthood; if he is to be a brother, then he prepares for non-ordained ministry, having made his solemn vows.
Year of Renewal and Integration
The Year of Renewal and Integration allows the professed Carmelite student, having completed his study of Philosophy, to experience community living in a Carmelite house other than the house of studies and, to the extent that he can, to participate in the life and ministry of that community. The student learns to integrate the initial formation experience within a different life setting; he perceives how the knowledge he has acquired, the tradition of the Church and our Carmelite charism shed light on community living and on contemporary pastoral situations; he deepens his knowledge of the Carmelite tradition while, resting somewhat from his philosophical studies, gathers momentum to plunge into the study of Theology.