The Messenger 14th June 2024

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Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)

On the 4th December 1963, Vatican Council II approved its first document, The Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy (Sacrosanctum  Concilium). Among the reforms contained within this document was the restoration of an ancient process by which adults, seeking to be received into full communion of the Catholic Church, were to be initiated (catechumenate). The process, later to become known as the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA), was mandated for use in England and Wales in 1988.

The re-discovery by Vatican Council II of this early Church (third century) formation process and its subsequent refinement and development,  has offered to countless thousands of adults around the world (including Guernsey) the opportunity of a momentous change in the purpose and direction of lives.

Although originally this process was made available to adults who sought conversion to the Christian faith through baptism, it is important to emphasise that the RCIA process as it stands today is the Church’s official method of formation for the following categories of individuals:

  • those who are not baptised and are enquiring about becoming a Christian within the Catholic tradition.
  • those who have received baptism within a Christian denomination other than Catholic, but now wish to enquire about reception into the Catholic Church, through the sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist.
  • those who have been baptised within the Catholic Church but have not received the sacraments of Confirmation and/or Eucharist.

RCIA takes place each year over the equivalent of two academic terms (September through to the following April). It should be emphasised that this time-scale for preparation to receive the sacraments of initiation can be extended to suit the individual needs of participants. Anyone interested in following the RCIA process is invited to make contact, in the first instance, with Canon Chris,  Parish Office, Tel: 720196,