Becoming Catholic (RCIA)

rcia_crosswpicsWhat is the RCIA? It is the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults. A process for learning about and entering into the Catholic faith which follows a model that has it’s roots in apostolic times.

Who May Participate? RCIA is designed for adults who are unbaptized, or have been baptized in another Christian religion and are seeking full communion with the Catholic Church, and for baptized Catholics who have for one reason or another, have not received Eucharist or Confirmation and would like to complete their journey into the Church.

What Is The Process? The RCIA is actually one rite, consisting of four distinct time periods in the person’s journey into the Catholic faith.

 The Inquiry Period is a time to ask questions, to study, and for each individual to discern whether he or she has a calling towards the Catholic faith. At the end of this period, an individual may decide to complete the process or choose to leave if it is not right for him/her.

The Catechumenate begins with the Rite of Acceptance. Through catechesis, liturgies, scripture study, and faith sharing, those desiring full initiation will seek a deeper knowledge of the Catholic faith and it’s teachings and become more aware of the deep relationship God shares with His people through the Church.

Next the period of Purification and Enlightenment begins with the Rite of Elect, which will be celebrated with Bishop Richard Pates. This period is for reflecting on the life of Christ, and His death and resurrection. It is a time to experience the richness of the season of Lent and to think about the baptismal promises about to be made or renewed at the Easter Vigil. This is the time when participants will receive all of the sacraments necessary for full communion with the Catholic Church, the bride of Christ.

The final period, Mystagogy, covers the fifty days from Easter to Pentecost. At this time, the new members of the Church can reflect on their new life in Christ and how they may more fully participate in the life of the Church and how they may :Love and serve the Lord”.

What is the Time Commitment? The whole process takes about nine months from the beginning of the inquiry period to the end of Mystagogy at Pentecost. The sessions are held in the mansion meeting room on Tuesdays from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM. We will also have special times to meet during which special rites are celebrated at St. Mary’s or at St. Ambrose Cathedral in Des Moines.

“And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the jaws of death shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven” Matthew 16:18-19.

Come and join us on a journey of understanding the majesty and tradition of the Catholic Church through Scripture study, discussion, questions, answers and prayer! Discover the great treasure Christ left on this earth for His people.

The St. Mary of Nazareth RCIA Team invites you to email the parish to register or inquire about the RCIA process. If you know someone who would be interested in participating in this investigation of the rich and tradition filled body we call the Catholic Church.

Email or deposit in the collection box your name, address, phone number and email address.

St. Mary of Nazareth
4600 Meredith Drive
Des Moines, Iowa 50310