In the letter, dated the Solemnity of the Epiphany of the Lord, Fr Saverio stated the need to “recognize the role of our laity committed to the Order in the development of our various presences.” Secular Carmel is much more than a group of associated laity, “identified with a monastery, convent or parish”, “the members of Secular Carmel have taken on a commitment to the Order, with their life, with their mission and with their spirituality”.
From this point of view, Fr General stated that “the Secular Order shares their own spirituality with the world surrounding them”, as Fr Luis Aróstegui already expressed in his letter sent in 2006 to the Provincials, on the occasion of the document on the Pastoral Assistant to the members of Secular Carmel.
Fr Saverio also pointed out in his letter that the relationship which exists between the friars and the secular members is a grace and a responsibility. The responsibility consisted of “an adequate formation of mature members of the Church and of the Order” and of the “availability of the secular members in the planning of the mission of the Provinces”, while the grace supposed “the reciprocal enrichment of the vocation which each one lives”.
Fr General concluded by saying, “The spiritual relationship which exists between the friars, the nuns of the cloister and the Secular Carmelites of the Order is a source of great wealth for each one of us as individuals and for the Order. It is also a source of grace and of dynamism for the Church which we serve and for the world, which needs to enter into the knowledge of the presence of God”.