Interested in learning more about the Catholic faith? Call Fr. Skillman at 636-332-9225 ext 223 or email [email protected].
Do you sometimes feel you would like to learn more about the Catholic Faith or do you have a family member or friend that is interested in the Catholic Faith? The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is the process in which interested adults are gradually introduced to the Roman Catholic faith and way of life. Participation in the RCIA program does not require you to become Catholic.
RCIA is a Journey
The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) is a program for adults who are interested in joining the Catholic Church or would like to learn more about the Catholic faith. It also includes adults who were baptized Catholic as infants but never received the other sacraments or religious instruction.
Our program is led by a team that includes our priests, deacons, and parishioners. We meet on Monday evenings at 7 PM. The program starts in August/September and the highlight of the program is the Easter Vigil when the participants are received into the Catholic Church and receive the Sacraments of Initiation. The whole program concludes on Pentecost Sunday (7th Sunday after Easter).
RCIA Ministry Team
At this time, we are blessed to have a full ministry team. However, if you would like to be added to our volunteer list for future involvement, please contact the parish office. Volunteers serve as sponsors, help with hospitality, and provide administrative support. Good communication skills and a desire to share your faith are important. Training is provided. Sponsors must be practicing confirmed Catholics who receive the Eucharist regularly. If you would like to help, contact the parish office at 636-332-9225.
RCIA’s Four Stages
The RCIA journey consists of four stages, with liturgical rites between each stage.
Inquirers learn introductory information about the Catholic Church, engage in faith sharing, and obtain answers to their questions about the Catholic faith.
This stage commences with the Rite of Acceptance as inquirers make a commitment to continuing their RCIA journey. The formation of “catechumens” includes in-depth teachings of the Church; weekly worship; study of the Sacraments; and participation in the Church’s mission and community life.
This third stage, coinciding with Lent and commencing with the Rite of Election, involves a period of intensive preparation to receive the Sacraments of Initiation at the Easter Vigil, through prayer, fasting, almsgiving, and periods of reflection.
In this final stage, extending from Easter to Pentecost, new Catholics (or Neophytes) deepen their understanding of their faith and reflect on their experience of becoming Catholic and its affect on their life at home, at work, and in the community as they commence an ever-deepening relationship with Jesus over a lifetime.
The RCIA setting is a communal process designed to assist catechumens and candidates in their faith journeys.
The class setting is informal and relaxed. The RCIA team has been called to guide your pilgrimage of faith towards full communion in the Catholic Church. They make this journey with you along with your sponsor. The class presentations will address the fundamentals of our living faith, including, scripture, Sacred Tradition, Church teachings, and the sacraments. While there are no required homework and tests, you will be asked to make a commitment of time and effort.
Participation, Prayer & Worship
Integral to the presentations by the RCIA team is your participation and faith sharing, as well as time spent in prayer and worshipping God together. This is your time and your journey to a closer relationship with God. Your RCIA team and sponsor are privileged to accompany you on the way!
RCIA Is Designed For Those:
- Who have not been baptized
- Christians baptized in another faith desiring full communion with the Church
- Baptized Catholics who have not received catechesis for the other Sacraments of Initiation
- Wanting to know about Catholicism
Sample RCIA Topics
Is Jesus calling you into a deeper relationship?
Can I confess my sins directly to God?
Why is Mary the Mother of God?
What are the gifts and fruit of the Holy Spirit?
Frequently Asked Questions
When does St. Patrick’s RCIA program start? August 21, 2023; Monday classes at 7 PM
Do you offer weekend RCIA classes? We currently do not have weekend RCIA classes.
When do I become initiated into (in full communion with) the Catholic Church?
At the Easter Vigil Mass
What if I’m uncertain or need more time?
You may extend or discontinue your journey at any time. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you.
How do I know if God is calling me to discipleship in the Catholic Church?
Come and see. RCIA is a journey of faith to examine the beliefs and teachings of the Catholic Church, but it is also about conversion, deepening one ’s faith, and being disciples of Jesus.
Will I need a sponsor?
You will choose a sponsor, who is a practicing Catholic, to join you on your journey. If you need help finding a sponsor, we can guide you.
What do I need to bring? What’s expected of me? Bring an open heart and mind, and a journal for notes. Study materials will be provided.
How do I get started?
Call Fr. Skillman at 636-332-9225 ext 223 or email [email protected].
What do I do until RCIA begins?
If you inquired about RCIA/Becoming Catholic when it is still a long time before the next RCIA year begins (in September), there are a number of things you can do prior to RCIA to honor Christ's call and to help enrich the journey of RCIA:
- Pray. Incorporate prayer into your daily routine. Prayer is an opening of the mind and heart to God. It is a conversation with the God who made you, loves you infinitely, and wants to converse with you.
- If prayer is new to you, start by saying a simple prayer like "Jesus, I want to know and love you more.". Gradually, add more content and simply speak to God from your heart.
- Begin incorporating some basic prayers of the Church into your daily routine, like the Lord's Prayer, the Glory Be (Doxology), and, if you are comfortable with it, the Hail Mary. And try not to just say them, but pray them! For some common Catholic Prayers, click here.
- For those more familiar with Christian prayer, you may want to explore the Liturgy of the Hours, which are the daily prayers of the Church, click here. You could also familiarize yourself with and begin praying the Rosary click here).
- Read the Bible. Like with prayer, make reading and meditating on the Scriptures--even just a few verses--part of each day. If you don't have a Bible, click here for the USCCB online Bible.
- If you haven't read the Bible before, start with one of the Gospels, Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John, which are accounts of Jesus' earthly life. Youth study bibles and contemporary bibles like "The Message" are ok to start out with if it helps you understand what you're reading. We would suggest following up with USCCB Approved Translations of the Bible.
- After you've become familiar with the Gospels, we would suggest reading Genesis (the first book of the Bible) and Romans and moving to different books from there.
- Consider an app or podcast for help. We've had great feedback from The Bible in a Year podcast, where Fr. Mike Schmitz walks you through the entire Bible in 365 episodes, providing commentary, reflection, and prayer along the way. Hallow is another highly-praised app.
- Attend Mass. You don't have to be Catholic to attend Mass! Yes, it can be confusing, especially if you have never been before, but there is great value in coming and encountering Jesus in the Mass. You may want to review the Order of Mass, or you can just follow what other people do. The only thing the Church asks of non-Catholics is when it comes time to receive Communion, feel free to come forward. However, when you are near the front of the line, please indicate that you are not Catholic by crossing your arms over your chest. This will signal to the person distributing Communion to offer you a simple blessing.
- Talk with Catholics. No one does Christianity on their own! If you know faithful, practicing Catholics, talk with them! Tell them of your interest in Catholicism, and don't be afraid to identify any doubts or hesitations you may have. Ask them why their Catholic faith is so important to them. Ask them to pray for you.
- Read the Catechism. The Catechism of the Catholic Church is the standard book that presents Catholic teaching in summary form. Click here for the USCCB online version.
- FORMED.ORG. This is a great resource! Unlock the power of faith with Formed.org's diverse Catholic movies, audiobooks, podcasts, shows, and more. Join today for FREE to deepen your spiritual journey.