Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults
- Are you seeking meaning in your life?
- Are you un-baptized but wish to learn more about Jesus Christ?
- Are you a baptized Christian who wishes to learn more about the Roman Catholic Church?
- Are you a Roman Catholic who has not completed his or her sacramental initiation?
- Do you feel God inviting you into (a deeper) relationship with Him?
Then maybe the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is the place for you.
Every year thousands of adults are welcomed into the Roman Catholic Community through the RCIA process.
To inquire about RCIA at St. Patrick’s,
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
The RCIA is a sacramental journey; a process leading to initiation into the Roman Catholic Church. It is also a communal process and involves a number of stages (Precatechumenate; Catechumenate; Enlightenment and Purification;Mystagogy) punctuated by liturgical rites (Rite of Acceptance,Rite of Election; Celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation). The process is about developing (or deepening) a relationship over time with both God and the Catholic faith community. The RCIA process follows the ancient practice of the Early Church and was restored by the Second Vatican Council as the normative way to prepare adults for baptism.
Click here for the 2013-2014 RCIA Program at St. Patrick’s.
The Precatechumenate is a period of inquiry. This is a time for inquirers to share their stories and connect their personal journey to the sacred story of God’s holy people. During this period the inquirers will learn the fundamental elements of the Christian Faith: holy scriptures, the Christian understanding of God, the Creeds, prayer, Church history.
The Catechumenate is a period during which candidates continue to grow in their relationship with Jesus Christ and be instructed into the Roman Catholic expression of the Christian faith. This period is characterized with instruction related to the sacraments, Mary and the saints, the social teaching of the Church, morality, and ethics
The Period of Enlightenment and Purification corresponds to the liturgical season of Lent and is intended to be a period of increased introspection and coming closer to God. We are invited to scrutinize our lives – to examine it more closely and allow God’s love and healing overcome our un-freedom.
The Period of Mystagogy marks the end of the formal process of Christian formation.
During the Easter Season, it is a period of post-initiation catechesis whereby the newly initiated are invited to reflect more deeply on the their baptismal calls in the community as disciples of Jesus. It is a time for discussing stewardship and lay ministry.
The Rite of Acceptance is a celebration whereby the inquirers declare to the Church their intention to continue the RCIA process. The church welcomes and accepts them as persons who intend to become its members.
This celebration of the Rite of Acceptance (Welcoming) signifies the beginning of the Period of the Catechumenate. At St. Patrick’s this rite is celebrated on the First Sunday in Advent.
Following a period of intensive instruction and discernment, catechumens and candidates are once again asked to reaffirm their commitment to complete their journey of conversion. Upon the recommendation of catechists, the Church declares their state of readiness to enter the final period in their faith journey. On the first Sunday in Lent, the Catechumens gather around the diocesan bishop at the cathedral to celebrate the Rite of Election.
The Rite of Election signifies the close of the Catechumenate. The "Elect" and Candidates now enter into the Period of Purification and Enlightenment to intensify their preparation for the Sacraments of Initiation. At St. Patrick’s, we precede this rite (celebrated at the Cathedral) by the Rite of Sending which is celebrated at the 11:00 Sunday Mass on the First Sunday in Lent.
The Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist) are celebrated with the assembly at the Easter Vigil. While many see the celebration of the sacraments as a graduation or an end of the RCIA journey, it is but a beginning to new life in Christ. The next period of the RCIA process, Mystagogy, is a post-initiation catechesis geared toward living out the Christian life as disciples.