At Saint Mary's
Some of our candidates and sponsors preparing for the Rite of Election.This rite marks a key moment.
In this rite, a priest, deacon, catechist, or representative of the community presents the catechumens to the celebrant, asking that they be recognized for their progress and be sent with the parish’s blessing and prayers to election by the bishop.
Candidates and sponsors relaxing in Saint Patrick's Coffee Shop after the Second Scrutiny. The three 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” .
Rite of Election
Some Candidates and Sponsors from Saint Patrick's participating in the Rite of Election in Saint Mary's Cathedral. At this rite the Church makes its "election" of these catechumens to receive the Sacraments of Initiation. In the presence of the bishop (or his delegate), they inscribe their names in the Book of the Elect at the cathedral as a pledge of fidelity.
At our RCIA session
Our Sponsors and candidates are involved in discussion regarding different topic. The sponsor is the person who “accompanies a candidate seeking admission to full communion with the Catholic church.
"As they become familiar with the Christian way of life, and are helped by the example and support of sponsors and the entire Christian community, the catechumens learn to turn more readily to God in prayer, to bear witness to the faith, in all things to keep their hopes set on Christ".(RCIA 75.2)
The RCIA process is similar to a journey taken. There is the first step, insights, difficulties and much learning along the way.It is a lifelong journey which just begins with the RCIA.
Prayer over candidate
Christian initiation is accomplished by three sacraments together: Baptism which is the beginning of new life; Confirmation which is its strengthening; and the Eucharist which nourishes the disciple with Christ’s Body and Blood for his trans-formation in Christ.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you” (Mt 28:19-20).
Rite of Election
Each parish has its own Book of the Elect. The names of candidates are inscribed in the Book each year. This book is presented to the bishop at the Rite of Election ceremony and he signs each book. "Elect" is the name given to catechumens who after completing an apprenticeship “in the Christian life”, celebrate the Rite of Election on the first Sunday of Lent signifying their being chosen for the initiation that upcoming Easter (RCIA 124)
Anointing with Chrism
The bishop or delegate extends his hands over those who are to be confirmed, prays that they may receive the Holy Ghost, and, while laying his hand on the head of each person, anoints the forehead with holy chrism in the form of a cross.In anointing the person he confirms, the bishop or delegate says: "I sign you with the sign of the cross and I confirm you with the chrism of salvation, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost."
After Baptism, the candidate receives the sacrament of Confirmation. Anointing the forehead with chrism in the form of a cross means that the Christian who is confirmed must openly profess and practice his/her faith, never be ashamed of it, and rather die than deny it.“