Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)
- What is the RCIA?
- Who is RCIA for?
- Why an RCIA process?
- Five stages of the RCIA Process
- Common Questions
- Prayers for Seekers
The RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults), also called the Catechumenate, is a process of initiation into the Catholic Community of Faith for persons who are experiencing a conversion in their lives and seeking either Christian baptism in the Catholic Church or full Communion with the Catholic tradition of Eucharist and Confirmation.It is a process which enables the study of the Gospels, Catholic Christian teaching, the acceptance of Christian values and morality, the development and deepening of a life of prayer and action with the support and involvement of the local Christian community. The RCIA is more than a course of instruction.
It is a process of conversion, designed to meet the unique and individual needs of the participants.
- Those who want to join the Catholic Church through Baptism or Profession of Faith.
- Non-Catholics who want to find out more about the Catholic Faith.
- Those who were baptized Catholic as infants but never received religious education, Confirmation, or First Eucharist.
Christians are made, not born. There is nothing automatic or instant in the Rite of Christian Initiation. The development of faith takes time; it cannot be rushed. The candidates must be allowed sufficient time for their faith to ripen. Ordinarily, this means time for personal growth and formation in the faith, depending, of course, on the background and spiritual maturity of the candidates.
In the past (in fact, hundreds of years ago), a person desiring reception into the Christian Community studied, prayed, fasted and did good works for three years. Initiation takes time. Initiation is more than doctrinal instruction. It is a way of coming to know the traditions, the people, the prayer and the actions of the community.