The Rosarian Oblates of Our Lady of the Forest (R.Ob. OLF)
Oblates of The Communion of the Mystic Rose, known as, The Rosarian Oblates of Our Lady of the Forest, are individuals who have promised, through an annually renewed commitment, to live according to the norms and basic structures of Catholic Christian religious life, as understood and expressed in the particular charism of our community. They are seekers of Truth and spiritual transformation struggling in the Way of Wisdom, attempting to live the contemplative Christian vocation in their own settings, in the midst of whatever other obligations they hold, such as family, career, or ministry. Oblates may be married or partnered, single, celibate, or any other relational permutation, so long as they show integrity, morality, and spiritual focus in all their relations.
Oblates commit to a simple but robust Rule of Life which they have custom-tailored to their own circumstances, in strict consultation with the Oblate Director(s) and the Prior or Prioress, under a promised commitment to the life of oblation, support of and obedience to the vowed leadership of the Communion. Oblates make no vows, however, and so are under no canonical commitment of formal obedience to the Prior or Prioress, or to the community as a whole. As such, the life of oblation is open to any validly baptized Christian from any denomination or jurisdiction (whereas those pursuing vowed vocations must be confirmed Episcopalians or members of another Church of the Anglican Communion). Their promises are not sacramental in quality, and are not binding beyond the term of one year, except for those oblates who have made a 'life promise', which one may be eligible to make, in discernment with the Prior or Prioress, after a period of three to five years.
The Rosarian oblates have their own sub-community of fellowship within the community, and their own distinct formation process, but are also invited into regular fellowship with the traditional monastics and vowed religious householders of the order. Though the commitments of oblates are not as demanding as those of the vowed religious of our Communion, the rigor of the life of oblation is not to be underestimated or compromised, and is something we hold in high esteem as a distinct calling. The oblates of The Communion of the Mystic Rose are counted as a critical part of the family of the larger order, and the life of oblation is a direct extension of the community’s core religious life.
To help clarify the distinctions between the three different vocational expressions of our community, we say that the life of oblation is something that one fits or integrates into the rest of one’s life. The vowed religious householder’s life is something that the rest of one’s life must fit or integrate into. And the traditional monastic life is something that the rest of one’s life is sacrificed for.
This summarizes the basic essence of the three types of formal religious commitment available in the Rosarian community, and we strongly encourage all those who are discerning with us to reflect deeply on these distinctions and the different vocational charisms they represent within our spiritual family. Such discernment is a mutually engaged process, and our community members are here to help you discern what path God and the Blessed Mother might be inspiring you toward.
To inquire about the possibility of becoming an oblate of The Communion of the Mystic Rose, please send an inquiry by email through the contact form on the homepage. Peace and every blessing from the Rosarian community. +