How to Rekindle Your “Desire for the Infinite” in Ministry
Recently, I met with about 120 RCIA leaders from the dioceses of Belleville, IL, Springfield, IL, Springfield-Cape Girardeau, MO, and the archdiocese of St. Louis. Our agenda was to discuss the vision of the restored catechumenate and how that vision unfolds all year round; it cannot be confined to a few months of the liturgical year.

The bright, sunny Sunday afternoon matched the mood of the participants who seemed happy to be gathering with each other and passionate about their ministry. We began our conversation by recalling what Pope Francis has said about our role as those who accompany seekers on the journey of faith.

In The Joy of the Gospel, Pope Francis said, “All Christian formation consists of entering more deeply into the kerygma, which… is the message capable of responding to the desire for the infinite which abides in every human heart” (The Joy of the Gospel, 165).

Six amazing things every RCIA inquirer has to learn
Has this ever happened to you? You’re watching a movie or a TV show. Somewhere close to the end of the show, your spouse walks into the living room. He or she gets drawn into the show and asks, “What’s this story about?” When the show breaks for a commercial, you have two minutes to sum up everything that went on before.

In a nutshell, that’s evangelization. By the way we act and talk, people get drawn into our story—which is actually the story of God’s reign. They get curious, and they ask us a question. But they don’t want a theology lesson. They don’t want to hear salvation history. They don’t want to hear about Real Presence and transubstantiation. You have about two minutes, maybe less, to tell them the core of the story in a way that fans the flame of their interest.
What you’re saying about TeamRCIA

Dear Nick and Diana,

I wanted to share our little success story with you. Since I took over the catechumenate and we re-introduced dismissal and began emphasizing the year round, ongoing nature of the process, our adult RCIA has just boomed! I had 6 folks for a Rite of Acceptance/Welcome in September and 6 more just a couple weeks ago. 4 of those will be baptized at Easter Vigil and the others will come into full communion as we go… some before Lent, some during Easter, some whenever.

But my joy is the community’s response and growth. I wholeheartedly believe that the RCIA, implemented well, fundamentally inspires conversion in the entire community. While maturation of the catechumens and candidates is rather expected, the spiritual growth and enrichment for the sponsors who had never heard of the rite, the catechists who are blessed to interact with these amazing spiritual travelers, and even myself, allowed the grace of re-living through others my own journey is immense!

So that’s our little update. Blessings to you in the new year!

Paz y bien,

Angela Flynn
Durham, NC
RCIA resource highlight

Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: Study Edition

United States Bishops' Committee on the Liturgy

Why is this book important?
The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults is the authoritative teaching of the church on the purpose and process of initiation. It is the Vatican II vision of the initiation process that answers the mandate of Jesus Christ to go and baptize.

What is in this book?
The RCIA is not a textbook or a how-to book. It is a rite, a sacrament of the church. The pastoral introduction provides the fundamental principles of the initiation process and outlines the four stages and three ritual steps of initiation.

Part I of the ritual text is the classic process of initiation for unbaptized seekers.

Part II is a collection of adaptations for baptized seekers, children, and those who are already disciples and seek full communion with the Catholic Church.

What’s the big deal?
You cannot do the RCIA without mastering the principles and processes in the rite itself. Doing the RCIA without reading it is like trying to do Hamlet without ever having read the play.

Once you understand the principles of the RCIA and begin to implement them as fully as you are able, it will change your life and the life of your parish.

Your price: $33.20
A complete catechesis for Christian life
Free sample of Faith, Life & Creed
Click button to learn more
Resources for your team
The Heart of Faith: A Field Guide for Catechumens and Candidates
Nick Wagner

Price: $12.95
Your Price: $12.30
Welcoming the New Catholic, Third Edition
Ron Lewinski

Price: $10.00
Your Price: $9.50
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Photo credits: Jesse Sewell | Unsplash
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Nick Wagner

Diana Macalintal

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