By the time he was 12, St. Simon Stock knew his vocation was to be a hermit; he began a life of prayer and sacrifice in a little shrine he had made inside a giant oak tree near his home in England. He spent years there, and people came from all over to ask for his prayers.Then, after a vision of Our Lady, St. Simon went to the Holy Land, where he became a Brother of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Mt. Carmel, a Carmelite. But when the pagan Turks overran the Holy Land—burning and destroying—many of the brothers left for Europe, to begin new monasteries. St. Simon was sent back to England to be in charge of all the Carmelites there.Poor St. Simon! The Carmelites in England had many troubles—the strange food, climate and language, ridicule from people, lack of vocations, and even trouble because of their habit. One day when St. Simon had prayed for hours about these troubles, Our Lady appeared to him again, this time holding out a Carmelite work apron, or scapular, and promising, “Whoever dies wearing this scapular shall never see eternal fire”—that is, shall not go to Hell. Soon many people began wearing a miniature version of the Carmelite Brown Scapular underneath their regular clothes.Our Lady was very pleased, and many centuries later she appeared at Fatima holding just such a scapular. Thus did she confirm the marvelous message and gift she had given to St. Simon Stock so many years before.