RCIA is an apprenticeship in the Catholic Christian way of life.
RCIA is not a set of classes about the Catholic faith but rather, a journey of conversion to becoming a disciple of Christ in the Catholic tradition.
RCIA is for anyone who has reached the age of reason (around 7 years) and is not baptized, or is baptized in a non-Catholic Christian community, as well as any Catholic adult who has been baptized but has not received their first communion.
How do I as a parishioner become involved in RCIA?
The church tells us that the initiation of adults is the responsibility of all the baptized! We, as the people of God, are called to give help to those searching for Christ. In our various circumstances of daily life we can help those in their journey. We welcome the inquirers in personal conversation and to community gatherings. We pray the various rites with the catechumens and candidates and welcome the Neophytes (the newlybaptized) with open arms, and help them feel more at home in the community. We can offer to walk with a particular person as a sponsor, sharing our faith experiences and formally bringing them into the life of the community.
What’s involved in being a “Sponsor?”
A sponsor, as a representative of the community, accompanies a candidate on their journey to becoming practicing Catholics. They are asked to share their faith experiences as friends rather than as teachers. Sponsors invite their candidates to church activities like special prayer services, Stations of the Cross in Lent, date night, etc. Sponsors check in with their candidates to see how they and their families are doing. They may have their candidates and family over for dinner, for example. A sponsor gives testimony and stands as a witness to the candidate’s moral character, faith and intention when and before the candidate is initiated. Being an RCIA sponsor doesn’t take lots of extra time! We want busy people who are active in church and community activities to be sponsors as they can bring their candidate along with them. While we like our sponsors to attend some of the catechumenate sessions, we mainly ask the sponsor introduce the catechumen or candidate to the community and to share their faith life experiences with them. I might be interested in being a sponsor.
How do I get more information?
Contact the RCIA Director, Lynda Knoche at firstname.lastname@example.org about what is expected of a sponsor. When we find the right catechumenate or candidate, we will match you. We promise the experience will enrich your faith life as you walk with another towards Christ.