RCIA for Adults

RCIA stands for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults:  You are invited to come to our RCIA classes which are held on Wednesday Evening from 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm upstairs of the Parish Life Center Servants of the Lord Room 2.  For more information, please contact Deacon Mike Symons at (850) 357-4469 or email, mike.symons@saintmary.life 

You may also fill out this online registration form and someone will contact you.

Period of Inquiry and Catechumenate

The Catholic Church invites you to embark on a faith journey. This is a time of introduction to the Scriptures, to prayer, to our Creed, and a time of reflection on one’s own life in light of the values of the kingdom of God. You will hear from others who began their faith journey.  You will also spend time with the pastor for a one-on-one interview.

Rite of Acceptance

The Rite of Acceptance takes places during this period.  In this liturgical rite, those who wish to become catechumens (unbaptized) and Candidates (baptized) publicly express their desire to follow the way of Jesus.  During the Rite of Acceptance ceremony, you will be signed with a cross on your forehead, and presented a Catholic Bible.  The Sign of the Cross is one of the central symbols of our faith.  The Bible represents your information source to get to know God.  The Bible is used in this ceremony to represent a desire that it will help the Catechumen learn the Word of God and to live and grow in wisdom.

Period of Purification/Commitment

During this time, Catechumens & Candidates participate in several ceremonies, grow more in their faith journey through the help of a local sponsor, and participate in a retreat/day of reflection.

Rite of Election/Enrollment of Names

Usually, at the beginning of Lent, Catechumens who have decided to proceed toward entry into the Catholic Church, and who meet all the necessary conditions, gather first in their Parish Community at Mass. After the Homily, those to be Baptized (Catechumens) at the Easter Vigil will place their names in the Book of Enrollment.  Those to receive Eucharist and Confirmation will be presented so that parishioners will pray for you in these final days of preparation. 

The Diocesan Rite of Enrollment brings together all Catechumens from throughout the Diocese to the Cathedral, to be presented to the Bishop.   The Bishop hears that the Catechumens are studying, and preparing to receive the Sacraments of Initiation at the Easter Vigil Mass. The Candidates are welcomed by the Bishop, marking their rite of entry into the Lenten Season.  All are now known as the Elect. 

Scrutinies

The Scrutinies are rites for self-searching and repentance.  The Scrutinies are meant to heal all that is weak or sinful in the hearts of the elect and to strengthen them with all that is upright and good.  They are intended to do three things:

  • to purify the Elect’s minds and hearts;
  •  to strengthen them against temptation, and
  • to purify their intentions. 

Prayers of the Scrutinies ask for God’s blessings and assistance that the Catechumens make firm their decision to remain more closely united with Christ, and that they might grow in their efforts to love God more deeply.  The three Scrutinies are celebrated on the Third, Fourth and Fifth Sundays of Lent as a part of the Mass.

Easter Vigil

The Easter Vigil service is the climax in your journey.  At this service, after the readings, those not previously baptized receive the Sacrament of Baptism.  All who have been properly instructed and have the necessary knowledge are received into the Church.  All receive the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Eucharist.  Together with the entire Parish family, the elect affirms the Creed which they have grown to honor and believe.

Period of Mystagogia

This word literally means “learning the mysteries.”  The mysteries referred to is the new experience of the Christian life.  During the Easter season, the neophytes (new Catholics) continue to meet.  Attention focuses upon their experience of Easter; what happened, and what is happening now in your lives.  These few sessions of the R.C.I.A. program explore the new beginning of your lives as fully initiated Catholics.  We look ahead together, for ways which you can join the ongoing life of our Parish community and give active participation and expression to your new faith mission.

Becoming Catholic-Youth RCIA

For children over the age of seven, please check the box below to contact Dcn. Mike Brown: