Carmelite Sisters of the Infant Jesus
Who are we?
The Convent of Carmelite Sisters of the Infant Jesus was founded in 1921 in Sosnowiec by Father Anzelm Gądek, Discalced ("barefoot") Carmelite and Mother Teresa Kierocińska. The beatification processes of our founders has been in progress. Our Convent belongs to the Carmelite family. We try to combine prayers (Heaven) and active apostolate (the Earth). Our apostolate should origin from prayer and lead to it. The following words of St. Teresa of the Infant Jesus are a motto of our Convent: "I wish to pass my Heaven in doing good on earth". Nowadays over 500 nuns belong to the Convent in 56 houses. It has an international character as nuns come from Poland, Czech, Slovakia, Belarus, Latvia, Ukraine, Burundi, Rwanda, and Zaire.
What do we live on and what do we have to share with others?
The Convent of Carmelite Sisters of the Infant Jesus was set up to spread the spirit of being God’s children in accordance with the Carmelite spirituality. Prayers, contemplation and mortification, silence and loneliness together with humbleness, sincerity and joy that we all are the children of loving God the Father are the values we want to live in accordance with. We want to teach those who will be granted to us prayers and mortification in the spirit of the Holy Church and the Carmelite Order by the example of our own lives. We also have deep in our hearts and prayers missions, penance and sacrifice. We “Ask the Lord of the harvest, therefore, to send out workers to the harvest field". We want our lives to follow the example of the Infant Jesus who was the Son of the Father in the manger and on the cross and is still present in the Eucharist. We want to be like children in front of God – trustful, each day more humble and sure of His love to everyone. Our special patrons are the Holy Mother of Jesus, St. Joseph, Prophet Elijah and the saints of Carmel – Saint Teresa of Ávila, Saint John of the Cross. They show us how to love God and our neighbors; how to listen in silence to the words of God and to announce them to the others; how to live in such a way that the God’s Kingdom will be in us and the eagerness to save souls will get stronger and stronger. St. Teresa of the Infant Jesus is our Patron, Friend, Teacher and Supporter. Her „little way” is our way. In Her writings we find the hints saying how to follow her path and not to get lost. We wear Holly Scapular and so we are obliged to follow the virtues of Holly Mary, to live as she used to live, and to stay in close relation to her.
How do we serve the Church?
We follow the voice of the Church in our evangelical work, spreading it especially among the poorest in our country and abroad - on the Mission territories. We help in pastoral duties as: religion teachers, organists, sacristans, nurses. We run kindergartens, nurseries, recollection houses. We organize days of concentration, groups of prayer, choruses, choirs for children and teenagers. We have patronage on Fraternities of Infant Jesus in many parishes. They purpose is to teach children how to pray and worship Infant Jesus. Our nuns work as missionaries in Burundi and Rwanda, Cameroon, Latvia, Belarus, Ukraine, Czech, Slovakia, France, Austria, and Rome.
How do we live?
The first formation stage in our Convent lasts 8 years – aspirate, postulate, novitiate, 5 years of contemporary vows and the permanent vows. We vow to God purity, poverty and obedience. We claim we want to give ourselves to God completely and to follow Jesus on the way of spiritual childlessness. In this way we want to strive for perfect love. Each our day consists of: 1. Community prayer, Holly Mass, Liturgy of the Hours, Rosary, prayers in our minds that we practice an hour a day. 2. The work in ordinary chores at home and outside. 3. Resting in joyful concentration of being together with the convent community and alone – to have more spiritual and physical power to serve God. We try to cherish the spirit of silence and concentration in our houses, to make oasis out of them for the nuns coming back from apostolate and for all those who want to meet God in our place.