RITE OF CHRISTIAN INITIATION FOR ADULTS
The RCIA, which stands for Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, is a process through which non-baptized men and women enter the Catholic Church. It includes several stages marked by study, prayer and rites at Mass. Participants in the RCIA are known as catechumens. They undergo a process of conversion as they study the Gospel, profess faith in Jesus and the Catholic Church, and receive the sacraments of baptism, confirmation and Holy Eucharist. The RCIA process follows the ancient practice of the Church and was restored by the Second Vatican Council as the normal way adults prepare for baptism. In 1974 the Rite for Christian Initiation for Adults was formally approved for use in the United States.
In addition to non-baptized men and women, “candidates for full communion” may also participate in the RCIA process. Coming into “full communion with the Catholic Church” describes the process for entrance into the community of faith for men and women who are baptized Christians but not Roman Catholics. These individuals make a profession of faith but they are not baptized again.
To prepare for this reception, these individuals, who are called “candidates,” usually participate in a formation program to help them understand and experience the specific teachings and practices of the Catholic Church. Some of their formation and preparation may be with catechumens preparing for baptism.
We also welcome adult baptized Catholics who have not been catechized or trained for Holy Eucharist, Reconciliation and Confirmation. Aspects of RCIA are adapted to meet your unique preparation for full initiation into the faith of your baptism.