Servants of the Lord
and the Virgin of Matará

Our Religious Family

The Religious Family's Coat of Arms and Its Meaning

Father Carlos Miguel Buela, our founder, wanted our Religious Family to be called “of the Incarnate Word” to honor the greatest event in history, an event that cannot be surpassed by any other: the Incarnation of the Son of God.

The Religious Family of the Incarnate Word is composed of:

  • The First Order: the masculine branch (Institute of the Incarnate Word, IVE), Missionary & Contemplative Priests, Deacons, and Religious Brothers.
  • The Second order:  the feminine branch (Institute of the Servants of the Lord and the Virgin of Matará, SSVM) Missionary Sisters & Contemplative Sisters.  
  • The Third Order: Lay families and Young Adults wishing to share in our spirituality.

United by the same faith, the same ends, the same mission, the same founder, the same charism, and the same spirit, the religious of the IVE and the SSVM, together with the IVE Third Order wish to form one family so as “to live and to make others live under the action of the Holy Spirit”. As St. Paul wrote, where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom (2 Cor 3:17).

 Male Branch 

The Institute of the Incarnate Word was the first branch of the Religious Family of the Incarnate Word to be founded by Fr. Carlos Miguel Buela in 1984. The Institute which draws its spirituality from the mystery of the Incarnation, was founded on none other than the Solemnity of the Annunication, March 25th, 1984 in San Rafael, Argentina. The same day that the Pope John Paul II consecrated the Church and the whole World to the Inmaculate Heart of Mary.

It was canonically erected as a Religious Institute of diocesan right by Most. Rev. Msgr. Andrea Maria Erba, Bishop of Velletri-Segni (Italy), on May 8, 2004.
It is currently spread throughout the five continents, working pastorally in 93 ecclesiastical jurisdictions in 44 different countries.

As a missionary order, the IVE fathers are present around the world serving the Church in difficult places with few Catholics, as well as in areas of large Catholic communities.  In some places they are part of making known the message of Jesus Christ for the first time, in other places their missionaries face the secularist modern indifference. Above all, the service of the missionary priest is to bring Jesus Christ to souls by his prayer and through the sacraments.
Not only do we work together in missions around the world, but we sisters are especially grateful to have IVE priests serve as chaplains, professors, and spiritual directors.  They are our fathers and our brothers.

Exclusively Contemplative Members 

While the majority of the religious dedicate themselves to apostolic works, imitating Christ who announced the Kingdom of God, some of them live an exclusively contemplative life, be it monastic or hermetic.

East & West 

In order to help the Christians of the Eastern churches, who form part of the indivisible patrimony of the Universal Church, we also include an Eastern branch: Byzantine and Coptic rites.  In this way we breathe, in the same way as the Church, with two lungs.  As St. John Paul II said :  “One cannot breathe as a Christian, to say it more, as a Catholic, with only one lung; one must have two lungs, that is to say, of the East and of the West.” (John Paul II, OR 08/06/1980).

When our mission in Ukraine opened in 1998, our General Superior recognized the importance of the black habit to conform to the culture, whose liturgy is that of the Greek-Byzantine Rite of the Catholic Church. Religious sisters of this rite traditionally wear black habits. Today in Ukraine and Siberia, our Eastern Rite sisters wear the black habit, which, except for the color, is the same as the blue and grey habit, including the Cross of Matará.