Discalced Carmelites of the Australia Oceania Region

Ashfield - Sydney

Mary Immaculate Community 

This community joined Facebook in July 2011: Carmelite Seculars Sydney.www.facebook.com/pages/Carmelite-Seculars-Sydney/132800683475292 Photos, news and reports about the community's activities are updated regularly there.

A Short History


This was the first Discalced Carmelite Secular Order Community in Australia. One of our members describes a continuing family connection with the Discalced Carmelites from the time when his grandfather helped the first Nuns, about 1909, when they came out from France. Although he did not himself join the Order until later (1960), he recounts how Fr Anthony came down each month from Brisbane (at that time, the only presence of the Friars in Australia) to give talks to the two ladies who first started up the Third Order (as titled at that time): Lorna O’Regan (professed 7/2/1959) and Vi Carmichael (professed 14/12/1957). However, other professions are recorded as early as 1951.

The members became canonically erected as a Fraternity in 1964.

Sister Marguerite was very involved with the early group and relates how the group did a lot of fundraising to support the establishment of a Carmelite convent in Lismore.

Meetings were held at the Nuns’ Convent in Dulwich Hill until about 1988, when the venue was changed to the rooms of the Legion of Mary in Broadway. Some time after the Nuns vacated Dulwich Hill, the Secular Order continued to meet there by courtesy of the Maronite Nuns who took over the convent. This continued till 2008, and meetings are now held on the third Sunday of each month at the Catholic Church, Ashfield. We have about 30 active members present at a meeting, and almost as many who are impeded by old age or infirmity from full participation. The active members come from as far as Canberra, Bathurst and Newcastle.

As with all Secular Communities, council elections are held every three years. A report after the elections in 2009 announces the newly elected Council.