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Information about becoming Catholic.

Becoming A Catholic (RCIA)

Adults and children of catechetical age seeking baptism participate in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA). This process, which includes liturgical rites, a program of formation and catechetical instruction, is now in place in most of the Fairbanks area parishes.


UNBAPTIZED ADULTS AND CHILDREN OF CATECHETICAL AGE

Period of Evangelization and Precatechumenate
This is a time of no fixed duration or structure. Sessions allow inquirers to ask questions about "Catholic" things, to share their stories, build community, and to be introduced to prayer and the Gospel values.

First Step: Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens
This is a liturgical rite where inquirers declare their intention publicly to the Church and the Church accepts their intent to follow God's call to follow Christ.

Period of Catechumenate
This is an extended period in which the catechumens are given formation and guidance in Catholic teachings. It consists of two parts: Breaking open the Word and Catechesis. This period can last from one year to a few years. Some of the rites for this period may include the dismissal rite, blessings and anointing of catechumens.

Second Step: Rite of Election or Enrollment of Names
The Rite of Election coincides with the beginning of Lent and is celebrated with the Bishop. It is recommended that the Rite of Sending be celebrated at each parish before the Rite of Election. Godparents and catechists testify as to the readiness of the catechumens for the sacraments of initiation.

Period of Purification and Enlightenment
This is a period of more intense spiritual preparation. It is a time of reflection rather than a time of catechetical instruction. The period is intended to enlighten the minds and hearts of the elect with a deeper knowledge of Christ. Rites belonging to this period are the scrutinies, the presentations and the preparation rites on Holy Saturday.

Third Step: Celebrations of the Sacraments of Initiation
The designated time for the celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation is the Easter Vigil, at which the elect are initiated into the Church through baptism, confirmation, and the Eucharist.

Period of Mystogogy
This is a period in which the neophytes, with the community, deepen their sacramental life with emphasis on the gospel, the Eucharist, and works of charity. Post baptismal catechesis is offered to the neophytes that they may deepen their grasp of the paschal mystery.


BAPTIZED CHRISTIAN ADULTS AND CHILDREN OF CATECHETICAL AGE
BAPTIZED ROMAN CATHOLIC ADULTS

Inquiry
This is a time of no fixed duration or structure. Sessions allow inquirers to ask questions, to share their stories, build community, pray and deepen their understanding of the Gospel values.

Rite of Welcoming the Candidates
This is a liturgical rite that may be celebrated two or three times a year and can also be combined with the Rite of Acceptance for catechumens. The inquirers declare their intention publicly to the Church and the Church accepts their intent to follow God's call to follow Christ.

Catechesis
Preparation for the candidates, for the most part, corresponds to the preparation of catechumens. There is no set time frame for catechesis for the candidates, as a candidate may be received into the church as the team and candidate discern his/her readiness.

Rite of Reception
The reception of candidates  ordinarily takes place at the Easter Vigil Mass or at a Sunday Eucharist. Candidates who are received into the Church must also be immediately confirmed and receive their first Eucharist.

Mystogogy
This is a period in which the newly received, deepen their sacramental life with emphasis on the gospel, the Eucharist, and works of charity. Post baptismal catechesis is offered to the neophytes that they may deepen their grasp of the paschal mystery.