The Catechetical Review - Communicating Christ for a New Evangelization

Articles Under: RCIA

Foundational Doctrines Are the Key to Eucharistic Revival Several years ago, a Protestant couple came to my parish RCIA to support friends who were becoming Catholic. They came every week for the entire process. After one of the sessions, they asked, very sincerely, “We believe the Catholic teaching on the Eucharist. You say those who do not profess the same belief in the Eucharist cannot receive to protect them from receiving unworthily. Since we believe, why can’t we receive?” I gently explained that to truly profess belief in the Eucharist is to believe all that is connected to the Eucharist... Read more
In the Period of Evangelization and Precatechumenate, the unbaptized person is referred to as a “candidate for the catechumenate.” This title continues into the Rite of Acceptance. A critical shift, however, occurs during the Signing of the Senses. The celebrant says, “Dear Candidates, your answers mean that you wish to share our life and hope in Christ. To admit you as catechumens I now mark you with the sign of Christ’s cross and call upon your catechists and sponsors to do the same . . . Receive the cross on your forehead. It is Christ himself who now strengthens you... Read more
The human heart loves mysteries. By mystery, I mean hidden knowledge that requires a sleuth to uncover the truth. We love the idea of discovering lost secrets that upend our entire understanding of our world. Think of space aliens and the secret Area 51 in New Mexico. Think of movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark where the “true purpose” of the Ark of the Covenant is revealed or National Treasure , which divulges the “real” mission behind the Knights Templar and features the discovery of an ancient, buried treasure. There are even “mysteries” about the Catholic Church found in... Read more
Family life is formed by the decisions made in the first years. Will we use NFP? How many children will we have? How will we educate our children? Will we pray daily? Will we go to Mass every Sunday, no matter how difficult it is? What will be first priority: sports, activities, vacation, a successful career, or something else? What movies will we watch? What will be the place of technology in our home? What kinds of lifelong friends do we want our children to have? We believe that a life in Catholic community with other families is necessary today... Read more
One of the most stressful moments for baptized Protestants entering into full communion with the Catholic Church is making their first Confession. Unlike Catholics who typically need only to recall sins from a month or so, these baptized adults in RCIA must make a first Confession covering their entire lives—many decades for most. Occasionally, a zealous Protestant arrives in RCIA months before Easter asking the question, “Can I go to Confession now?” This sets up the question: How early may a baptized candidate go to Confession? Surprisingly, very little is written on this subject. Of course, it may not be... Read more
"Y le anunciaron la Palabra del Señor a él y a todos los de su casa" Hechos 16,32. En la primera parte establecimos la razón fundamental por la cual el sabio proceso del RICA debe de tomar la delantera de nuestros esfuerzos por evangelizer y catequizar a familias enteras. Guiándonos del Directorio para la catequesis , nuestro enfoque es “una catequesis de inspiración catecumenal para aquellos que han recibido los Sacramentos de Iniciación Cristiana, pero que aún no están suficientemente evangelizados o catequizados, o para aquellos que desean reanudar el camino de la fe” [1] . Este artículo explora los... Read more
Developing a Process “And they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all that were in his house.” Acts 16:32 In part one we established the rationale for the wise process of the RCIA to move to the forefront of our endeavors for evangelization and catechesis of entire families. Taking guidance from the Directory for Catechesis , our focus is on a “catechesis of catechumenal inspiration for those who have received the sacraments of initiation but are not yet sufficiently evangelized or catechized or for those who desire to resume the journey of faith.” [1] This article... Read more
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“Porque la promesa ha sido hecha a ustedes y a sus hijos, y a todos aquellos que están lejos: a cuantos el Señor, nuestro Dios, quiera llamar” (Hechos 2,39). Tiempos desafiantes requieren de soluciones innovadoras. Estos son, en verdad, tiempos desafiantes, tanto en el mundo como en la Iglesia. Es importante que los catequistas laicos brillen como faros de luz en la oscuridad para atraer a familias enteras hacia la sola Luz verdadera – la del mismo Cristo en la Iglesia Católica. Más importante aún, es el momento para que el sabio proceso del RICA tome la delantera de nuestros... Read more
“For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, every one whom the Lord our God calls to him.” Acts 2:39 Challenging times require innovative solutions. These are indeed challenging times, both in our world and in the Church. It is important for lay catechists to shine as beacons of light in the darkness to draw entire families to the one, true Light—that of Christ himself in the Catholic Church. Most importantly, it is the time for the wise process of the RCIA to move to the forefront of our endeavors for... Read more