According to the USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops), RCIA or the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults is religious education for those who have come to some knowledge of Jesus Christ and want to be a part of His Church, but this person may not have received all of their Sacraments. There are 7 total Sacraments in the Catholic Church, those which can be received through the process of RCIA are Baptism, Reconciliation, Holy Eucharist, and Confirmation. This process is reserved for individuals who are adults young and old, and past the age of infant baptism. Some who enter RCIA may be converting from another religious sect or were baptized Catholic and have not received all of their sacraments.
During the process of RCIA, the person becomes known as a candidate (a baptized individual) or Catechumen (someone who needs to be baptized) and discovers the joys of the Catholic Church through instruction in the RCIA program. Instruction may come in the form of a mentor or individual studies, but either way, the process must be guided by the Coordinator of Religious Education. This journey may last a long time or it may be a shorter guided instructional time.
Most times, the candidate will be a part of the Rite of Election which happens on the first Sunday of Lent. At this time, the candidate will sign their name in the Book of the Elect and be recognized by the Parish Community as a part of the process of being received as a Catholic Christian. Many will spend the following weeks of Lent preparing to be fully received into the Church. RCIA candidates will typically receive the Sacraments on Holy Saturday during the Easter Vigil Mass.
If you are seeking RCIA please contact our Coordinator of Religious Education, Cindy Brisson at (518)237-8043 or fill out the contact form below.
For a more complete list of our Ministries please click here.