Why Wear a Brown Scapular?

This isn’t a get-out-of-hell-free card

The brown scapular is an outward sign of an inward devotion, not some sort of magical token. It’s a sign of Mary’s protection, a sign that is only meaningful if it is accompanied by prayer and fidelity. But how did this devotion come to be?

In 1251, the Blessed Virgin Mary appeared to St. Simon Stock in Cambridge, England, and gave him the brown scapular as a sign of divine protection for his Carmelite order which was suffering oppression and hardship. In 1917, during the miracle of the sun, Our Lady appeared in Fatima as Our Lady of Mt. Carmel with the child Jesus, offering the children a brown scapular. She also appeared as Our Lady of Sorrows, together with Jesus and St. Joseph, and finally as Our Lady of the Rosary.

The rosary is our weapon and the scapular our shield. Wearing the brown scapular is a continuous expression of devotion—an exterior sign of interior fidelity.

Our Lady of Mt. Carmel promised that anyone who dies wearing the brown scapular would not suffer the eternal fire. However, just wearing a scapular is not enough. It is not a magical token. You have to be “vested” in this Carmelite devotion by a Catholic priest or deacon and, most importantly, you must uphold your end of the promise, which is to remain completely loyal to our Blessed Mother by living a life of Grace.

Once you are invested, you are vested for life. (All of our scapulars come with a handy prayer card to bring to a priest or deacon so you can be vested right away!)


Tell your story

Pair text with an image to tell a story

And let’s be absolutely clear: no sacramental gives grace by its own merit. Rather, “by the Church’s prayer, they prepare us to receive grace and dispose us to cooperate with it.” (CCC 1670) And even in the most basic material sense, what you wear affects how you perceive yourself.

This sacramental is a way to remind yourself constantly of Our Lady’s love and intercession for us—an exterior sign of interior fidelity… ultimately to Jesus, her Son.

If you're considering being vested in the scapular for the first time, we encourage you to take the leap! Or, if you're already a devotee and are tired of repeatedly replacing your flimsy scratchy scapular, we invite you to experience the most durable and comfortable brown scapular ever made!