The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (also known as the “R.C.I.A.” or the “catechumenate”) is the formation process for adults who are seriously considering the sacraments of initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, Eucharist). It is an ongoing process in the parish. The process involves four stages of formation and development, and each stage is centered and celebrated in the liturgy of the Church.
Baptized in another faith…
Those who are already baptized Christian in another faith denomination may prepare to join the Catholic Church through our faith formation sessions which take place within a group setting. If you were reared and actively involved in another Christian church, your formation for the Catholic Church may take place in a series of meetings with the Faith Formation Director. Candidates are received into the Catholic Church through a profession of faith together with the Sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist. Candidates are received into the Church when they feel they are ready to make the commitment the Catholic faith requires. This is usually done with a group including those who are to be baptized, but may be done at other times throughout the year.
Those who are not baptized enter into formation for the Catholic Faith through a formation process known as the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (R.C.I.A.) Preparation for entrance into the church may take from one to three years, depending on when the candidates feels ready (s)he is ready to make the commitment the Catholic faith requires. The Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist for adults are administered each Easter.
Children under seven years of age…Children who are under the age of seven years may be baptized anytime after one or both of the parents are Catholic. Parents are required to attend a one-night session in preparation for the baptism of their child(ren).
Children 7 to 18…Children beyond the age of seven and up to 18 years of age are formed in the faith through the RCIA as well. However, the formation for their faith is done through a process adapted to their age and circumstances. In order to enter the process, one of the child’s parents must be Catholic or in formation for the Catholic faith.
If you are interested in becoming Catholic, if you know of someone who may be interested in exploring the Catholic faith, or if you are interested in any of the R.C.I.A. ministries, please contact our Religious Education office at 513-624-3146.