“RCIA” is shorthand for the way the Catholic Church incorporates new adult members into its community. The letters are an acronym for the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: the title of the Vatican II document that guides the process in which people are welcomed into the Catholic Christian community and introduced to the Catholic way of life.
RCIA describes a gradual process of conversion that can take anywhere from a few months to several years, depending on the certainty and readiness of each individual. The process includes instruction in what Catholics believe, but more than that it involves conversion to a new way of life in Christ. Through the process, people gradually learn what it means to be Catholic not just by hearing it, but experiencing Catholic life and worship from inside the parish community.
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