Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults

A process for exploring the possibility of joining the Roman Catholic Church through the Holy Rosary Parish Community.

Most adults became Catholic over a long period of time. Many were baptized as infants, spent their childhood in Catholic homes, and received their education through the Catholic school system. These people were gradually initiated into the full life of the Church through the reception of the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist. Some adults, who were baptized in a non-Catholic Church, have become Roman Catholics after making a solemn profession of faith, being confirmed, and sharing in the Eucharist with the Roman Catholic community.

Other adults who have never been baptized have been initiated into the Roman Catholic Church after a process of formation, prayer and discernment by the individual and the community. This initiation is marked by the celebration of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist at the annual celebration of Easter.

In Canada, the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops has urged parishes to implement the RCIA. Its goal is to foster or deepen one’s personal conversion to Jesus Christ, to living the gospel proclaimed by Jesus, and to participating in the life of the faith community.

The RCIA provides a structure that incorporates the preaching and teaching of the gospel, prayer, spiritual direction, and catechesis (handing on the tradition of the Church) and personal contact with members of the local parish. The RCIA calls all members of the parish to share their faith with the new members. The parishioners are asked to welcome, support, and pray for these men and women as they journey towards full initiation in the Roman Catholic Church. The parish provides sponsors who act as companions for those who are seeking membership in the Catholic community. There are liturgical celebrations or rites that are celebrated throughout the journey to mark the candidate’s spiritual growth and to visibly express the parish’s concern and support.