Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
1. What is Notre Dame de Vie Institute?
Notre Dame de Vie is a spiritual family founded in 1932 by a Carmelite priest, Fr. Marie-Eugene of the Child Jesus and a lay person, Marie Pila.
2. Where does its name come from?
'Notre Dame de Vie' is a sanctuary in France (Vaucluse), where the Blessed Virgin Mary has been venerated since the 6th century. It is there that the Institute has started and developed.
3. What is the spirituality of Notre Dame de Vie?
The Spirituality of Notre Dame de Vie is that of Carmel: the spirituality of Teresa of Avila, John of the Cross and Therese de Lisieux.
4. What is the ideal of Notre Dame de Vie?
To witness to God's primacy in the world through prayer and professional commitment in ordinary life conditions.
5. How could this ideal be realized?
Each member, whether lay or priest, exercises her professional activity or his ministry by being faithful to the two hours of daily silent prayer.
6. How does one maintain this commitment?
Through an initial formation of two years and the regular returns to a center of solitude (45 days a year and one year of spiritual renewal for about every twelve years).
7. How do the members consecrate themselves to God?
Through the three vows of poverty, chastity and obedience recognized by the Church.
8. What is the structure of Notre Dame de Vie Institute?
It is made up of three autonomous groups: Notre Dame de Vie Institute (Lay women group), Sons of Notre Dame de Vie (Lay men group) and Priests of Notre Dame de Vie (sacerdotal group). Some associate members and family groups also live by the spirituality of Notre Dame de Vie.
9. How many members does the Institute have?
It has around 600 members spread out in 20 countries.
10. Are members of Notre Dame de Vie more present in certain professional sectors?
A secular Institute is open to all types of professions or ministries and the conditions vary much according to each country. In France, a great number of members are involved in the health and education sectors.