Sacraments of Initiation

Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist are the sacraments by which we become full members of the Church, the body of Christ. They provide the foundation for the other sacraments of the Church: the sacraments of healing (Reconciliation and Anointing of the Sick) and the sacraments of vocation (Marriage and Holy Orders).

The process is different for young children (0-6) and older children and adults (age 7 and above).

The RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults), also called the Catechumenate, is a process of initiation into the Catholic Community of Faith for persons who are experiencing a conversion in their lives and seeking either Christian baptism in the Catholic Church or full Communion with the Catholic tradition through Eucharist and Confirmation.

It is a process which enables the study of the Gospels, Catholic Christian teaching, the acceptance of Christian values and morality, the development and deepening of a life of prayer and action with the support and involvement of the local Christian community. The RCIA is more than a course of instruction. It is a process of conversion, designed to meet the unique and individual needs of the participants.

What is Baptism?

"Holy Baptism is the basis of the whole Christian life, the gateway to life in the Spirit, and the door which gives access to the other sacraments. Through Baptism we are freed from sin and reborn as children of God; we become members of Christ, are incorporated into the Church and made sharers in her mission: Baptism is a sacrament of regeneration through water in the word." (Catechism 1213). Through baptism, we become part of the royal, priestly people of God, called to holy lives of prayer and service.

What is Confirmation?

The Sacrament of Confirmation is, with Baptism and Eucharist, one of the three sacraments of initiation; confirmation completes and "confirms" the grace of baptism. Through the anointing with the sacred chrism the baptized person is "enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit," and more than ever "obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed" (Catechism 1285).

What is Eucharist?

In the Eucharist, Christ nourishes the believer with the essential food, which is the sign of faith and bread of life. The celebration of Mass forms our local Church, connects us with the apostolic faith, and links us with the Church universal. All parish life revolves around the Sunday celebration of the Lord's paschal mystery in the Eucharist. The reverence with which we offer this sacrifice of praise is an outward manifestation of the holiness of God who has taken on our flesh. The Eucharist is holy manna, food for the whole of the Christian journey. In our devout participation in the Mass we are given a foretaste of the banquet of heaven and given a hunger for the invitation to join the Lord, the angels and the saints around his heavenly table.

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