Possibly Resurrecting the Mantellate
A CFP friend is in dialog with her Bishop to resurrect the vocation of being a Mantellate in the Catholic Church.
Originally designed as a vocation for widows, the Mantellate vocation then extended to all ages.
In a nutshell, this vocation consists of
* living a celibate life
* being consecrated by your Bishop to living a Rule of Life in your own home (approved by your Bishop)
* leading an active life of service to the Church, particularly practicing the corporal works of mercy.
The Mantellate were originally Third Order Dominican women who wore habits and lived in their own homes.
The difference between the Mantellate and hermit way of life has to do with the proportion of action to contemplation. Hermits live in solitude and their vocation is prayer in the Church. The Mantellate vocation is active service in the community, bolstered by prayer.
Two well known Mantellate were St. Catherine of Siena and Blessed Margaret of Castello, neither of whom, by the way, were widows but who were single, faithful Catholic women.
If the interested Bishop approves, the resurrection of this life would be open to all charisms, not simply Dominican. The Confraternity of Penitents, if permitted by our Bishop, would support this vocation for its members who wished to live the CFP Rule of Life in this consecrated fashion.
If living the consecrated life as a Mantellate might possibly interest you, please email Amanda at email@example.com so that she can add your name, in her correspondence with her Bishop, as a possible discerner to this way of life. The goal is to have this available to men and women in every Diocese.
If you know someone else who may possibly be interested in this vocation, please share this information with them.