RICA Aprendizaje (español)
Apprenticeship in the Catholic Community
The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults
When an unbaptized person presents themselves to the Catholic Church for Baptism. The Rite of Christian Initiation is the process this person will embark on to be fully initiated into the Roman Catholic Church. This is a five step process. Inquiry period of time, the Catechuemenate, the Rite of Election, the reception of Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist at the Easter Vigil, and the period of Mystagogy.
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults – Children of Catechetical Age.
When an unbaptized child who has reached the year of 7 years old and have reached “the age of reason”. They are to enter into the process of the Rite of Christian Initiation.
“Such children are capable of receiving and nurturing a personal faith and of recognizing an obligation in conscience an obligation in conscience. But they cannot yet be treated as adults because, at this stage of their lives, they are dependent on their parents and guardians and are still strongly influenced by their companions and their social surroundings.”RCIA 252
The National Conference of Catholic Bishops state:
Since children who have reached the use of reason are considered for purposes of Christian Initiation, considered to be adults (Canon law 852, §1), their formation should follow the general pattern of the ordinary catechumenate as far as possible, with the appropriate adaptations permitted by the ritual. They should receive the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist at the Easter vigil, together with the older catechumens.
The General Directory of Catechesis tells us that all catechesis, handing on the faith, should be modeled on the baptismal catechumenate - the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults.
Evangelization and conversion are at the heart of all that we do in formation of the faith community
Six fundamental dimensions of formation named in the GDC also emphasized in initiatory catechesis
1. Knowledge of the faith
a. Scripture and Tradition
b. The Creed
2. Liturgical Formation
a. Full, conscious and active participation in the liturgy learning about our liturgical life
b. Honoring the dignity and gifts of baptism
3. Moral Formation
a. Conversion and interior transformation
b. Living the Beatitudes
a. Forms and Use of Prayer
b. The "Our Father" as a summation of the Gospel
5. Community life
a. Care for all; reconciliation among people and communities - the life of the community
b. Ecumenical sensitivity
a. Lives of Christian witness
b. Service in the community
c. On-going evangelization
These themes are woven throughout the documents of the Second Vatican Council and are echoed in the US Bishops' Pastoral Plan for Adult Faith Formation, "Our Hearts Were Burning Within Us.“ They are integral to the National Directory for Catechesis as well.
Prepared by Clare Colella
For more information and or questions please Call Brother Ken at (209) 895-6065 or E-mail