R.C.I.A. Overview

The RCIA is the process through which interested adults are introduced to and study our Catholic faith. Sessions are held on Wednesdays from 6:30 – 9:00 p.m. in the Cathedral undercroft September through Pentecost. The process also includes attendance at the 10:30 a.m. Sunday Mass. Contact Carol Keene at (614) 657-9528 or keene9@gmail.com.

Meet the 2011-2012 RCIA Participants

More information on RCIA:

The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is a journey toward becoming a full, participating member of the Catholic Church. This modern rite was restored in the late 1970s, in the wake of the Second Vatican Council, but is based on the ancient "order of catechumens," which dates to the very earliest years of the church's history.

RCIA can be described as a faith formation process designed primarily for adults who have not been baptized in any faith and are intentionally seeking God in their lives. Additionally, it is for those baptized in other faiths, as well as those baptized Catholics who never completed their Sacraments of Initiation, Confirmation or the Eucharist.

By intentionally seeking God as an adult, an opportunity to foster a closer relationship with Him presents itself. RCIA is the process to develop that relationship and to discover great spiritual growth. Instructors teaching the fullness of the faith and relating the faith to Holy Scriptures, are the guides for your faith journey. Your development is accompanied by a personal sponsor and a community of individuals with the shared interest of seeking out and coming to know God more closely.

The RCIA program guides the candidate through four periods of development.  RCIA instruction consists of prayer, educational presentations, and small group discussions. The basic fundamentals of faith are shared, starting with Genesis and answering basic questions like; Who is God? Who is Jesus Christ? What is the Church? As an individual progresses through each period of development, the instruction becomes more specific in terms of doctrine and teaching. The ultimate goal is to help people get a clearer sense of God, His son Jesus and The Holy Spirit, to understand the full deposit of faith given to us by Jesus and to equip them with the knowledge and means to live out their life as God would want us to.

RCIA Periods of Development

The R.C.I.A. program begins in the fall of each year at St. Joseph Cathedral and continues through Easter and the early summer of the following year.  At the present R.C.I.A. meets Wednesday evenings and during every 10:30 AM Sunday Mass once the program starts.

Period of Inquiry

A 2-3 month period of discernment and introduction to gospel values.

Rite of Acceptance and Rite of Welcoming.

A combined rite celebrating the Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens for those adults considering receiving the Sacraments of Initiation (baptism, confirmation and Eucharist) into the Roman Catholic Church and the Rite of Welcoming baptized adults from another Christian faith who wish to enter into full communion with the Roman Catholic Church.

Period of the Catechumenate

A 3-month period for more intensive studying and nurturing in the Catholic faith.

Rite of Election of Catechumens and Call to Continuing Conversion of Candidates

A combined rite taking place the First Sunday of Lent affirming the catechumens readiness to receive the Sacraments of Initiation -- baptism, confirmation and Eucharist at the Easter Vigil -- and recognition by the Bishop of those candidates readiness to receive the Sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist at the Easter Vigil.

Period of Purification and Enlightenment

A time that immediately precedes the elects' initiation, usually the 40 days of Lent, as a time of reflection, intensely centered on conversion.

Celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation

Usually celebrated at the Easter Vigil by which the Elect receive the Sacraments of Initiation (baptism, confirmation and Eucharist) and the candidates receive the Sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist.

Period of Mystagogy

A period of reflection on the Easter mysteries and discussions around how to actively live out your faith in every day life, 4-5 weeks.

RCIA Sponsors

The sponsor is friend, mentor, witness and guide for the catechumen or candidate and stands as a witness to the candidates' moral character, faith, and intention.

Activities of Sponsors include:

  • Participate in gatherings, ask questions, encourage discussion.
  • Invite and accompany catechumen or candidates to day liturgies and Parish activities.
  • Invite catechumen or candidates for coffee and conversation.
  • Encourage and affirm candidates' growth in faith.
  • Listen to candidates and pray with them about personal needs and concerns.
  • Participate with candidates in some other parish ministry.
  • Share faith experienced

St. Joseph Cathedral's fine R.C.I.A. program is a great way for any Catholic to update his or her faith understanding.  Volunteers are needed in this program.