Here at Saint Michael Parish, the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults is a year-round program that guides the participants to a deeper understanding of the Catholic faith. RCIA classes typically consist of parishioners who are seeking the Sacraments of Initiation — Baptism, First Holy Communion, and Confirmation. However, the classes are open to any parishioner who wishes to better understand the faith.
Marriann Tefft, Steward for RCIA, has helped with the process for two years and is very passionate about sharing the faith with those who are seeking the truth.
“We use a year-round curriculum, which might be different than many other parishes,” Marriann says. “But I believe it is important that participants can join when they are ready, rather than waiting until the beginning of the school year. Our curriculum follows the pattern of the Catechism of the Catholic Church and touches on important topics such as prayer, sacraments, liturgy, heaven, hell, Mary, and the saints. I always encourage people to bring any questions or hang-ups that they might have because I want to explore all of those topics as well.”
RCIA group meetings are held every Wednesday at 6:30 p.m. If someone can’t make it on Wednesday for any reason or is uncomfortable in a group setting, there is a one-on-one option that is offered. Members go through the curriculum at home and then meet with Marriann every two weeks.
The curriculum provides a book and videos for participants in both the group and one-on-one settings. In addition, Marriann or another speaker may present on certain topics throughout the year.
“RCIA is important for people to go through before receiving their sacraments because we want them to know what they are joining,” Marriann says. “We take this very seriously, and we want them to know what they are getting into. Once you are Catholic, you are Catholic for the rest of your life. Out of fairness to them, we want to make sure that they truly understand what they are saying ‘yes’ to.”
This RCIA process is dynamic and offers faith content and doctrine, as well as explanations of the Liturgy. It is very important that participants also understand what is occurring during the Mass.
“This is a hidden gem within the Church,” Marriann says. “Even if parishioners want to simply come sit, and learn more about the faith, they are welcome. It is a great way to connect with people who are striving to learn truth and love. We have many people who start in the RCIA process, and then continue to come after joining the Church because they love the community that they form here.”
If you have any questions about RCIA, please contact Marriann Tefft at email@example.com.