RCIA: Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults
- How did you find your way here – to Boston, to your current job or school, to your friends? Life doesn’t usually follow direct, clear paths. But sometimes it does offer invitations – to stay or leave, to deepen or pull back, to change or stay the course.
- In Christianity, we refer to those invitations as “grace”, because we are convinced that these moments aren’t random, but are privileged places God is active in our world. You’ve found your way here to this website because now may be one of those graced times – in which God is inviting you to closer relationship, to learn more about the Christian story of God in Jesus of Nazareth, or to consider an invitation to the Catholic church and the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist.
- Initiation is not about participating in a program or course of study. Instead, the Church recognizes that the initiation process is a period of formation and a time for prayer, catechesis, and ritual that prepares an individual to discern how best to grow in relationship with God.
- The first piece of the process in the Catholic church is Inquiry. Inquiry is a time of hospitality—when the local worship community extends a welcome to those who wish to know more about the Catholic faith. There is no commitment required of inquirers. A person may participate in this stage for as long as needed, from a few weeks to several years. During this time, an individual may decide that it is not the appropriate time to pursue membership in the Catholic church.
- Once an inquirer has decided to pursue their relationship with God through the Catholic church further, the seeker then makes a more formal commitment to continue to pray and learn more about the Catholic tradition with the hope of initiation as a Catholic. In order to address the diverse beginning points, we provide two paths towards initiation for adults: the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) and the Reception of Baptized Christians into Full Communion for the Catholic Church (RBCFC).
- Perhaps you’ve been attracted to the Christian story of God’s action in Christ and the Holy Spirit for some time, or have been drawn to Christianity by the example of other Christians, and want to become one yourself. If you have never been baptized, the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) is a process of prayer, reflection on the scriptures, and discussion, for people interested in becoming Catholic Christians through Baptism, Eucharist, and Confirmation.
- Perhaps you were baptized as a child, either in the Catholic church or in another Christian church, and want to continue the journey you began in Baptism through Confirmation and Eucharist. If you have already been baptized and wish to become a Catholic or if you are a Catholic adult who has yet to receive the Sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist, the Reception of Baptized Christians into Full Communion (RBCFC) is a similar process of prayer and discussion for already baptized Christians interested in deepening their Baptismal commitment, and, for some, in becoming Roman Catholics.
- We encourage you to contact us with further questions or inquiries, and to consult our Frequently Asked Questions page for more information. Our inquiry page gives information on upcoming inquiry sessions. God is already active in your life, and has been present in your choices and journey so far, even if you’ve never used the word “God” to describe this. We believe in a God who constantly invites us to deeper love of God and our neighbors, and so we also are graced to invite you: come and see.