Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults is a process of conversion that prepares adults to be received in to full communion with the Catholic Church through the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist--the Sacraments of Initiation. The process includes prayer, study, and catechesis (formal instruction). This process invites:
Adults who are not baptized and are seeking formal entry into the Catholic Church, adults who may have been baptized in another Christian tradition and desire to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church.
Adults baptized in the Catholic Church but have not been associated with the church since that time and desire to receive the other Sacraments of initiation (Holy Eucharist and Confirmation) and wish to become full members of the Catholic Church.
The RCIA program runs from September through Easter. Classes are held weekly.
For more information, call the Religious Education office at 734-847-1725.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is RCIA?
RCIA stands for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults. This is the process by which the Catholic Church presents her teachings to a variety of people, most of whom are interested in joining the Church. It is a journey of conversion, intended for unbaptized adults and children of catechetical age.
Baptized non-Catholic Christians that were never instructed in their faith may also be included in the process. They do not need to be baptized again, if they have been baptized with water in the words, "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." You will need to provide us with your baptismal certificate as soon as possible.
How do I sign up for RCIA?
You may register for the RCIA program by contacting Ellen Licavoli, Director of Religious Education at 734-847-1725.
Why do I need to be interviewed before and during the process?
Your initial interview gives the RCIA team an idea of where you are in your faith journey. We also must determine if there are any obstacles to your entrance into full communion with the Church that need to be resolved such as previous marriages. During the process we will talk with you again to make sure we are answering all your questions.
When will the classes meet?
Classes meet each week in Room 3, located in the lower level of the school building. Those discerning whether to join the Catholic Church should make every effort to attend the weekly sessions and all ritual celebrations. All are expected to attend mass each Sunday and holy days. It is especially important that the unbaptized candidates attend 11:00 AM Sunday Mass so that through their dismissal for scripture study, they may witness their commitment and the faith community in attendance may come to know them and hold them in prayer.
Do I have to attend every class?
RCIA is a building-block course and each class builds on the one before. However, we realize that there may be situations that would cause someone to miss. Therefore, absences are handled on a case-by-case basis. If you must miss a lesson, arrangements will be made for you to make up the session at another time.
What is the cost for attending RCIA?
There is no cost to you to attend RCIA.
If I enroll in RCIA am I committed to becoming Catholic?
No, you may withdraw from the program at any time.
May I bring my spouse to the classes?
Yes, you may. We encourage you to attend class with your husband or wife.
I was told I need a sponsor who is a baptized and confirmed Catholic and is in good standing in the Catholic Church and who will attend the classes with me. What if I don’t know anyone who could do that?
Don’t worry about it. We have people who will volunteer to fulfill that role.
What is the role of my prayer partner?
We have parishioners at Our Lady of Mount Carmel that would like to pray for you as you discern your desire to become Catholic. With your permission, we will give them your name and address. From time to time you may get a note of encouragement from your prayer partner. You are under no obligation to respond to their notes or meet with them. However, you may contact them if you wish.
I am getting married. Will I be able to complete the RCIA by then?
Maybe yes, and maybe no. The faith journey to become a Catholic takes time and energy. The timeline of a faith journey does not always coincide with that of a wedding.
If you are engaged, the deepening of your relationship with your fiancé and the preparation for your wedding take time. The deepening of your relationship with the Church community and the preparation for your baptism or full membership in that community also take time. It may or may not be possible for both journeys to arrive at a particular calendar date at the same time.
The Church wants to work with you. But sometimes working such a conflict out is beyond the Church's control - and not what is ultimately best for you. The desire to become Catholic should come from your personal conviction not from the pressure of an impending wedding.
What am I expected to know before I can become Catholic?
Your faith journey is a time of formation that is much more than education. Faith formation is a time for you to grow in the awareness of your relationship with Christ, with God, and with the Catholic Church. There are no tests; there are no grades. In fact, when classes are finished, you are really just beginning.
Who can I call for more information or clarification?
You may call Ellen Licavoli at 734-847-1725 with questions.