Baby Name of the Day: Carmela

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No – not technically, at least not according to, which is a pretty reliable source. (Though it does not list all of the contested saints, and you have to be careful with alternate spellings.) In any case, Carmela is still a Marian name – a name that honors the Virgin Mary. Like Assumpta or Lourdes or Stella Maris, any of the names that refer to aspects or pilgrimage sites are all generally considered in the same class as saints’ names.

When I was asked to provide a name for a baby girl, I thought of my ordination date that falls on July 16. In the Catholic Church, it is a memorial for Our Lady of Mt. Carmel. So, I told my friend to christen her: Maria Carmela. She chose Carmela over Maria. Reason: It is not as common as Maria.

Carmen is my favorite of the Karmel names, but Carmela is very nice. It could seem sugary, but the Sopranos character gives it some zest.

Carmela is lovely. I knew a girl growing up named Carmelle. I love how Carmela evokes caramels and thus candy and sweetness, but it’s not an overly frilly or cutesy name. Would love to hear Carmela over Gabriella or Isabella 🙂

Ok, now that I’ve been distracted for 10 minutes by the Cadbury website… I love seeing Carmela here! I have a baby cousin Carmella, whose twin sis is Josephine. Both are (Itallian) family names. There’s one more to come from that family so we’ll see what comes off our family tree next. It will probably be something in a a similar vein.

Oooo, Carmella and Josephine. How sweet. I especially <3 Josephine. It was only name I was expressly asked not to use by close family when I was pregnant with my twins, because my MIL has bad associations with it.

I went to school with a Carmella – it was considered old-fashioned even back then. (Yes she was Italian Catholic, and very good-looking).

Her nickname at school was Caramello Koala, sometimes just Koala. We had a sympathetic relationship because my nickname was Goanna; eventually we were just Koko and Gogo and I think everyone forgot what our nicknames were based on!