What is RCIA?
You may have heard the initials RCIA and wondered what they stood for. The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, RCIA, is a process by which adults and children over the age of seven (7), seek information about the Roman Catholic Church. The RCIA is a gradual process. The RCIA journey is one of prayer, scripture, learning about our Faith, discernment and celebrations marking milestones along the way. Those who decide to enter the Catholic Tradition of Faith do so through celebrating the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.
The Church considers children over the age of seven (7) as adults. The RCIA process is for them too. Immaculate Conception’s RCIA with CHILDREN follows the same process of prayer and formation but learning is geared to the ages of those participating.
WHEN DOES THE RCIA START?
Because the Holy Spirit moves in the lives of people as it wills, the RCIA process at Immaculate Conception Church is a year-round process. While for many years we thought of the RCIA as a fall to Easter time process, we realize it is vital to meet the person who inquires as and when the Spirit moves them to do so. We invite you to come, take that first step.
Contact any staff member at Immaculate and you will be warmly greeted and guided as to how to begin the RCIA journey.
WHO IS THE RCIA FOR?
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is for unbaptized persons
Those baptized into another Christian tradition who wish to become a Catholic
Baptized Catholics who were never formed in the Catholic faith and have not completed their initiation; that is, who have received neither of the sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist.
Unbaptized children over the age of seven (7)
This is the earliest phase in the process; it is also known as the Period of Inquiry. Catechumens and Candidates acknowledge that Christ is calling them into the Church through the movement of the Holy Spirit. This is a time for seeking and reflection.
Rite of Initiation
The first Rite in the RCIA process, the Rite of Initiation accepts new members into the worshiping community.
The longest part of the process, the Catechumenate is a time of learning and formation in the traditions and doctrine of the Catholic Church. This is a time for sharing stories, reading scripture, and studying the Church customs, traditions and doctrine. Participants also participate in worship services and various Church rituals.
Rite of Election
Catechumens and Candidates are chosen to be received by the bishop and the community and to receive the Sacraments of Initiation at Easter.
Sacraments of Initiation
At the Easter Vigil (Holy Saturday), all newly elected members of the community who have been journeying through the RCIA process are welcomed formally into the community of believers through receiving the Sacraments of Initiation – Baptism, Eucharist and Confirmation.
This is a time of reflection and celebration after the formal reception into the Catholic Church. Mystagogia means “leading into the mystery” and it is a time to explore the deep mystery of our faith and go forth to help build the reign of God on Earth as new members of the faithful.
At Immaculate Conception Church the RCIA team of leaders include priests, deacons, and parish members and sponsors who help guide, support and instruct those discerning whether to become members of our Catholic community. Team members share their faith and journey with those adults who are seeking Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist. Classes meet throughout the calendar year on Tuesday nights from 7:00pm-8:30pm.