What is Christian Initiation for Adults?
In the Catholic Church, RCIA stands for the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults. This rite is a formal entrance into the Catholic Church in which adults are instructed in the teachings of the faith, including how to pray, discern, and celebrate the liturgy properly. (See Catholic Education article here.) Adults in RCIA are called catechumens, and they receive the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Penance, Confirmation and Holy Eucharist.
Since formation is lifelong, we also recommend these resources for any adult who wants to know more about the Catholic faith. The resources used in the Diocese of Tyler are meant to unify and standardize what RCIA catechists teach other adults, so they can know and love Christ more and serve him better. The Way of Christ leads a person to become a disciple.
What Materials Do We Use?
The Way of Christ introduces readers to the fundamental teachings of the Catholic Church, the basics of what Catholics believe and how Catholics should live. It contains answers to common questions about Catholic beliefs and practices. By reading through these lessons, especially with a teacher, the reader will come to know this simple and profound faith, the faith taught by Jesus Christ and handed down in the one Church He established.
This book is available in English and Spanish, both as Student and Teacher books. Our resource website contains quizzes anyone can take. We also use this program for all catechists as a starting point for catechist training.
The program is intended to be used in a variety of ways. It may be read as part of a personal study of Catholicism. It can refresh the knowledge of those who are already practicing Catholics. It can reintroduce the Catholic faith to someone who has been away from the Church for some time.
I charge the institute to work to improve and standardize the RCIA ministry in the Diocese, and to fully support those pastors, religious and volunteers who work so hard in this ministry. I specifically call for an improvement and extension of the period of mystagogy, the continuing teaching of those who have recently joined the Church. —Bishop Joseph Strickland, Constitution on Teaching, 57
Note: this program is also used in the Foundational Level catechist certification. Pastors, catechists, and others who have questions about curriculum options for faith formation should contact the Director of Faith Formation, Dr. Luke Arredondo.
The Way of Christ Video Series
The Way of Christ: Christian Initiation Program introduces readers to the fundamental teachings of the Catholic Church, the basics of what Catholics believe and how Catholics should live. It is the standard for RCIA formation in the Diocese of Tyler. Each of the lessons has a video to accompany it and provoke reflection and discussion on the lesson topic.