Do you have competing values in your RCIA process?

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5 thoughts on “Do you have competing values in your RCIA process?”

  1. There is much wisdom in this article. We moved to a gradual process a few years ago and it works very well. People can come into the RCIA at any time during the year; rather than telling someone to wait until September, they begin when the Holy Spirit is prompting them. If they have to wait, they might not come in September. It isn’t as tidy for the team but it is better for the catechumens. One challenge is that the inquirers and sponsors need to be informed up front so that they realize that it could be a commitment of about two years. It is a journey of faith and God speaks to each of us individually so we need to treat each catechumen as an individual. It is an amazing privilege to be involved in RCIA. Thank you for all that you do.

  2. I agree with John Spotorno’s comment. Although all inquirers are individuals and need to be treated as such, it has been my observation that many of the people who come to the RCIA have been on the journey for a while. The “gradual process” for them started long before they came to the RCIA.

  3. My parish is in the fourth year of a year-round catechumenate that includes adults and children. While many adults have been on the gradual process of their faith journey long before they come to us, they haven’t made that formal decision to begin the process in the Catholic Church. And there will be road bumps along the way as they become acquainted with Church teachings and learn to think and act as Catholic Christians. I have yet to hear anyone say that they wish the process were shorter because they already knew everything, they already had a strong faith and relationship with Jesus. Everyone is grateful for the time they spent in the catechumenate to help give them a stronger faith and stable foundation for the next part of the journey, life as a fully initiated Catholic.

  4. @John Spotorno and @Mary, while it is true that the Holy Spirit has been at work in someone before they arrive at your door, and while it is true that the reception of Sacraments should be a beginning, not an ending, the statistics simply do not bear out the conclusion that a short, school-year-model RCIA is working (as in, is actually creating faithful and faith-filled Catholic Christians). The percentages of neophytes who are no longer practicing the faith six months after Easter are embarrassingly high. Linking RCIA to a nine-month school-year only increases a sense that the Sacraments are “graduation,” and thus an ending.

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