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Book of the Elect:  a book that serves as both a record of those elected each year and a symbol of God’s chosen people.

The book is kept in the office of each parish.




  • Any person in the period pre-catechumenate (RCIA 38)

  • One who is baptized as a Catholic “but did not receive further catechetical formation, nor the sacraments of confirmation and   Eucharist.  (RCIA 400-410

  • One who is already baptized in another Christian faith and has not received a suitable catechesis and who now is preparing to                    be received into the full communion of the Catholic Church. At the time of full reception, he or she will make a profession of faith, be         confirmed,  and receive Eucharist. (RCIA 409).


Catechumen: An unbaptized adult who has been accepted in to the Order of Catechumens through the Rite of Acceptance (RCIA 41-47)


Catechumenate: The entire initiation practice is sometimes called the Catechumenal Process, in reference to “one in instruction”. - 

Galatians 6.


Celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation: The Third step in the Catechumenal process is the

celebration the Sacraments of Initiation (Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist). “Through this final step the elect,

receiving pardon for their sins, are admitted into the people of God…led by the Holy Spirit…and share in the

Eucharistic sacrifice and meal” (RCIA 206). This most normally coincides, by ancient tradition, to the Easter Vigil.

(RCIA 207).


Elect: The name given to catechumens who after completing an apprenticeship “in the Christian life” (para 76-79),

celebrate the Rite of Election on the first Sunday of Lent signifying their being chosen for the initiation that

upcoming Easter (RCIA 124)



  •          “The carrying forth of the Good News to every sector of the human race” (EN 18)

  •           The life long process of conversion to Jesus Christ (GDC 47)

  •           The first period of Evangelization and Pre Catechumenate, which seeks to introduce candidates to Christ, by:

                a) “faithfully and  constantly” proclaiming the “living God and Jesus Christ whom he has sent for the

                    salvation of all” (RCIA 36),

                b) “a suitable explanation of the Gospel” (RCIA 38),

                c) an opportunity for the beginnings of faith (RCIA 37).


Lent : A six week period extending from Ash Wednesday to Holy Thursday. 


Mystagogy: The final period of the Catechumenal process which, the newly Baptized, and the newly initiated grow “in deepening their grasp of the paschal mystery and in making it part of their lives” through “meditation on the Gospel, sharing in the Eucharist,

and doing works of Charity” (RCIA 244).  The immediate period of mystagogy is from Easter to Pentecost.(RCIA 247, 251).










Neophyte: One who is initiated at the Easter Vigil. The term comes from the Greek word meaning new plant, as in a new sprout on a limb/branch. (RCIA 245)


Pre-Catechumenate & Evangelization: The first period of the Catechumenal process is evangelization, which seeks to introduce candidates to Christ, by:

a) “faithfully and constantly” proclaiming the “living God and Jesus Christ whom he has sent for the salvation of all” (RCIA 36);

b) “a suitable explanation of the Gospel” (RCIA 38); and, 

c) an opportunity for the beginnings of faith (RCIA 37).


Presentation of Creed / Presentation of Our Father : During the period of purification and enlightenment, the elect are presented with the Creed and the Lord's Prayer through special rites that usually coincide with the Scrutinies. (RCIA 147).


Purification and Enlightenment:  The third period of the Catechumenal process, normally coinciding with Lent, followed by the Rite of Election, which seeks to introduce the Elect, and Candidates to “a period of  intense spiritual preparation, consisting more in interior reflection than in catechetical instruction” (RCIA 139). It is the final period of preparation before reception of the Sacraments of Initiation.


Scrutinies:Thethree scrutinies are rituals for the elect that “are meant to uncover, then heal, all that is weak, defective, or sinful in the hearts of the elect” (RCIA 141). They are normally celebrated on the Third, Fourth, and Fifth Sundays of Lent. . Presentations of the Creed and Lords prayer normally coincide with the scrutinizes (RCIA 147)



  • The term used to refer to the person who “accompanies any candidate seeking admission as a catechumen” (RCIA 10). They assist the candidates, stand as witness to their moral character and present them to the Rite of Acceptance. 

  • The term for a fully initiated catholic who will journey with a Candidate (baptized but previously uncatechized adult) through their preparation and be present at their full initiation, or full communion into the church.



The Triduum: The three days of the celebration of Easter which begins with sundown on Holy Thursday evening and ends with evening prayer on Easter Sunday evening. It includes the liturgies of Holy Thursday, Good Friday, the Easter Vigil, and Easter Sunday


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