Have you ever thought:

  • Something is missing in my life, but what?
  • How can I live a more fulfilling life?
  • How does scripture affect my life decisions?
  • I want to be part of something bigger… but how?

If you are asking any of these questions, then the Catholic way of life may be for you. The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a journey that begins with the stirrings of faith and curiosity within one’s heart and leads to learning about God, Holy Scriptures, and the Catholic experience. There are four stages in the RICA process, each designed to guide participants gently along the way. Individuals will gradually recognize God’s personal invitation for them during periods of reflection and prayer, study and discussion, and involvement with other Catholics. Doubts and hesitations may also occur and are a natural part of this time of inquiry. RCIA is the process that informs and transforms candidates so that they may fully understand what it means to be Catholic in the world today.

Who Is RCIA For?

Everyone’s journey is different. The RICA is for adults who:

  • Have never been baptized as Christians, or
  • Have been baptized in other Christian traditions and are now interested in the Catholic faith, or
  • Have been baptized Catholic, but never received further sacraments of initiation.
  • Are confirmed Catholics but would like to learn more about their faith.

How Do I Get Started?

The RCIA journey generally starts in early September with weekly meetings and begins a period of inquiry. This is a time for introduction, not only to each other, but more importantly to the message of God, and an opportunity for the beginnings of faith to be explored. It is a time for reflection and discovery in which to:

  • Ask questions and become acquainted with the Catholic Church.
  • Examine God’s presence in our lives, past and present.
  • Recognize God’s message of love, faith, hope and salvation through His son Jesus Christ.
  • Realize our need for the Good News which is God’s Word.

If this is the right journey for you, the next three stages will continue with weekly meetings from fall through early spring.

Will There Be Anyone To Help Me Along The Way?

There will be many people ready to help you during the RCIA journey. The RCIA Team, sponsors, family involvement and introduction into the church community provide support on your journey of faith.

  • The RCIA Team is comprised of church members, teachers and members of the clergy who interact with you weekly throughout your journey.
  • Sponsors work with you one-on-one as a mentor and spiritual friend representing the Catholic faith community.
  • Sponsors support and guide you, pray with you and for you, and are your personal connection to the parish.
  • Introduction into the church community occurs naturally along the journey since the rites associated with the RCIA occur at Sunday Mass throughout the year.

These liturgical rites are eagerly awaited and become important events for the entire parish in which to renew their commitment to Jesus Christ.

How Long Does It Take To Become Catholic?

The RCIA is a journey of preparing for a lifetime commitment; consequently, there is not set timetable for completion. You can follow the journey at your own pace or stop along the way. There is no pressure to become Catholic. If you choose to continue with this journey, it will take about nine months to complete the RCIA process. What is most important is allowing adequate time for preparation to ensure spiritual readiness.

For More Information contact Debbie Portell at 573-445-7915, ext. 1124, or email: rcia@ourladyoflourdes.org.