Dear Catholic Exchange,
I was just reading a question on your site about the four-way medal and became a bit confused. Is there a medal that carries the same promises as the brown scapular, a scapular medal so to speak? I have long been a wearer of a medal that I was told by a priest was a scapular medal. It has Our Lady of Mount Carmel on one side and he Sacred Heart on the other. I more recently found a crucifix that also was also a four-way medal and on the reverse side of the Sacred Heart portion there was Our Lady of Mount Carmel. Needless to say I had bought it and wear it faithfully daily. With this in mind, my question would be, by wearing this medal am I covered under the promises of the Scapular? Thank you for your clarification.
Dear Mrs. Scheidel,
Peace in Christ!
I called one of the Provincial Offices of the Carmelite Order in the United States, who told me that the four-way medal could substitute for a scapular medal, provided that it did contain both the images of the Sacred Heart of Jesus with Our Lady of Mount Carmel on the reverse. The use of the scapular medal was approved by Pope St. Pius X in 1910. In that year, he gave approval for the use of a medal in lieu of the cloth scapular, and the Holy Office published the decree granting the permission and criteria. The Decree reads:
For the future all the faithful already inscribed or who shall be inscribed in one or other of the real Scapulars approved by the Holy See (excepting those which are proper to the Third Orders) by what is known as regular enrollment may, instead of the cloth scapulars, one or several, wear on their persons, either round the neck or otherwise, provided it be in a becoming manner, a single medal of metal, through which, by the observance of laws laid down for each scapular, they shall be enabled to share in and gain all the spiritual favors (not excepting what is known as the Sabbatine Privilege of the Scapular of Our Lady of Mount Carmel), and all the privileges attached to each.
United in the Faith,
Mary Ann Wiesinger
Catholics United for the Faith
827 North Fourth Street
Steubenville, OH 43952
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