Order of Christian Initiation for Adults

The O.C.I.A. is the way in which people explore the possibility of joining the Catholic Christian Community.   It’s a process of informal instruction, prayer and sharing - that leads to full membership in the Catholic Church.

For Whom Is This Process Intended?

It is for those adults who...      

  • have never been baptized      
  • have been baptized in another Christian Church      
  • have been baptized Catholics but never completely initiated through the sacraments of Confirmation and Holy Eucharist. 

What Are The Stages Of This Process?

The first stage of the O.C.I.A. is one of questioning called the Pre-Catechumenate or Inquiry Period.  This is a time for getting acquainted, a time for genuine questioning about the meaning of what life can be in Christ and how the Church provides that meaning. 

The second stage is called the Catechumenate or Candidacy and begins with a Rite of Acceptance for those who were not baptized or the Rite of Welcome for those who were baptized in another Christian religion.  During this time, the catechumens and candidates continue their faith journey through a deepening of their understanding of the Catholic faith.

The third stage is called the Period of Enlightenment or Purification - this period coincides with Lent and begins with a Rite of Election where the Bishop calls the “Elect” to the Sacraments of Initiation.  The entire parish community renews its commitment to the Christian life by joining with the catechumens and candidates in reflecting on Scripture, praying, fasting and works of charity.  Lent becomes a final preparation and the Sacraments of Initiation are celebrated during the Easter Vigil. 

The final stage is called the Post-Baptismal Period or Mystagogia.  This period is given its unusual name because it focuses on the mysteries (mystagogia) of Christ’s death and resurrection.  The newly baptized now share fully in the Eucharist and are asked to live the gospel in their daily lives.  

How Do I Begin?

The O.C.I.A. team is prepared to welcome inquirers and answer their questions as they deepen their understanding of the Lord through the Catholic tradition.   Meetings are held each Thursday evening at 7:00 PM in the Ark which is on the second floor of the Fr. Connelly Parish Center.  OCIA Team---Brent Worthington, Carol Keatts, Jim Keatts, Skip Shealy, Erica Marquette.

If you are interested or know someone who is, please contact Sarah Jarzembowski an email at michael.fitzpatrick@seaseton.org