One of the 4 original Mendicant Orders of Religious (or Begging Order), The Carmelites were founded around 1155 A.D. - by Lay Persons and Crusading Knights returning from The Middle East. Wishing to live a more “austere and prayerful” life, they retreated to Mount Carmel (Palestine). Their, many lived the lives of a Hermit in the mountains and deserts. However, with the changing tides of The Crusades, The Carmelites found Palestine no longer safe. They fled into Central Europe and began to establish “Houses”. A female Order was established in Spain by Teresa of Avila. However, by the 15th Century, graft and possessions became the norm within The Order. Two “Branches” developed. The first, “Order of Carmelites” (or OC) and “Order of Carmelites Disalced” (OCD). The OCD Branch practices a more “pious” approach (even not wearing shoes). They are located still today throughout The World by their use of the “Ancient” Brown Mantle/Apron (or Scapular). They work mostly as Teachers and Nurses.