RCIA (Rite of Christian initiation for Adults) is a process by which unbaptized individuals can be baptized into the Catholic Church. RCIA is also for those who have been baptized in another faith and for adults who have been baptized as Catholics but have not received the Sacraments of Eucharist and Confirmation. Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation are the Sacraments of Initiation. They are the Sacraments that gather us into the “Body of Christ” and must be received before all other Sacraments. The weekly preparation sessions begin in August and conclude in June of the following year. In addition to the weekly sessions, the candidates for the Sacraments are required to attend Sunday Mass together with their sponsors and catechists. There are four distinct periods during which the participants are helped to prepare for initiation by learning about the faith and through prayer and spiritual direction. These period or steps in a journey are marked by special rites and prayers. PERIOD 1: INQUIRY (PRE-CATECHUMENATE): During these sessions, inquirers are invited to ask questions about the Catholic faith and share their own life experiences. They learn about the Jesus Christ and are introduced to Scripture and Liturgy. There is no specified time for inquiry. This is the time for the inquirers to decide if they are ready for the transition to the next step. FIRST STEP: RITE OF ACCEPTANCE INTO THE ORDER OF THE CATECHUMENS: This is the liturgical rite marking the beginning of the catechumenate period, as the candidates express, and the Church accepts their intention to respond to God’s call to follow the way of Christ. PERIOD 2: CATECHUMENATE: After the initial rite celebration of the Rite of Acceptance, catechumens now study more deeply the Catholic faith and are immersed in Scripture, Liturgy, and the Sacraments. This is a period of prayer and conversion. SECOND STEP: ELECTION AND ENROLLMENT OF NAMES:This is the liturgical rite celebrated on the First Sunday of Lent which moves the catechumens to the next period of preparation. The catechumens enroll their names in a special book and are “send forth” to the Cathedral to be recognized by the Bishop. They are supported in prayer by the whole community. The baptized participate in the rite for “A Call to Continuing Conversion”..” PERIOD 3: PURIFICATION AND ENLIGHTENMENT: This is a time for reflection and prayer and fasting. It is a time for preparation for the sacraments and full reception into the Catholic Church and community. During this period there are minor rites to guide the elect in total conversion to Christ and repentance for their sins. There are three rites called “Scrutiny” on the 3rd, 4th and 5th Sundays of Lent when the whole assembly prays for the elect to give them a spirit of repentance and total conversion to Christ THIRD STEP: CELEBRATION OF THE SACRAMENTS OF INITIATION AT THE EASTER VIGIL MASS Only the Elect receive their sacraments at this mass. The baptized receive First Eucharist at mass on the Second Sunday of Easter and are confirmed with the youth of the community in May. PERIOD 4: POSTBAPTISMAL CATECHESIS OR MYSTAGOGY: This the time following the celebration of initiation during which the new Catholic Christians experience being fully part of the Christian community by continuing catechesis and by participation with all the faithful in the Sunday eucharistic celebration.
Rite of Election(February 21, 2021)
ST. CHRISTOPHER CHURCH FAITH FORMATION FaithFormation@sccwestcovina.net (626) 960-1805 ext. 203