Discalced Carmelites of the Australia Oceania Region


Our Lady of Mount Carmel Community

 Photo: The Brisbane Community in October 2009.

Left to right: JL Shanks, Joan Lakeland, Dorothy Vicenzino, Anne Bitossi, Sabina Sannen, Jackie Shanks, Margaret McGuire, Leona Feiner, Catherine Tracey, Mary Whittam, Maureen Franek, Leon Offenhauser, Val McKay, Bern Mellors (seated). 

Community Details

Our meetings are held on the third Sunday of each month. Most members (some come from a great distance, travelling up to two or three hours), are able to begin the day by attending the 9.a.m. Mass at the Monastery Chapel at Orminston. We then move to "Avila" for morning tea."Avila" is a meeting place on the grounds of the Ormiston Monastery. This is followed by Formation - Initial and Ongoing - where we share our thoughts on the study prepared during the month. We have lunch together which is a great time for socializing with each other. We then have our meeting for General Business and finish the day with a half-hour of Silent Prayer and Evening Prayer.

We keep in contact throughout the month. We take advantage of the months which have five Sundays to use that Sunday as a day of Reflection for the Community. We are also able to meet with the Nuns at least twice a year for recreation.

Each year we have our annual Retreat of three days with one of our Friars.  Each year we share in the public celebrations on the Feass of Our Lady of Mount Carmel and Saint Teresa and Saint Therese. 

Most members are active within their parish communities serving in ways that are open to them.

A short history

The Brisbane Community (Our Lady of Mount Carmel Community) began as the Third Order of Carmel in the 1950's, not long after the Friars came to Gregory Terrace,  Brisbane. After Vatican II the name was changed to OCDS and we were called Secular Carmelites. One of the original members, Margaret McGuire, is still with us.

The meetings were held at Gregory Terrace with the Friars.  After the Friars left Brisbane in the 1990's, the Community continued to meet in various places: at one time we were meeting at the President's house and then in a Parish Church Hall. At least we were able to continue and function as a Community.  Fr. Des Williamson, our spiritual assistant, would visit us at least three or four times a year.

Our new meeting place was made possible when the Nuns built a small meeting place "Avila" in the grounds of their Monastery in the Bayside suburb of Ormiston.