For weeks now, in John’s Gospel, we have been hearing Jesus tell us that He is the Bread of Life, the living bread, the bread that sustains us in this life and holds the promise of eternal life. At St. Joseph’s, we can be confident that we are opening doors to the Bread of Life, to life in Christ, for people of all ages – through our robust liturgies; our vibrant youth ministry, Faith Formation and sacramental preparation; our pastoral care; and much more. One team that accompanies adults to the Table of the Lord is our RCIA (Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults) team, working with adults and youth to prepare for Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist.
This summer I had opportunity to reflect on this as I facilitated a guided study on the RCIA with several graduate students at St. Bernard’s, including our own Director of Faith Formation, Jeanne Mooney. Throughout the time we spent with the other students, what was abundantly clear was how blessed our parish is by the diverse individuals who seek Christ and choose to prepare for the sacraments with our RCIA team. Because of the amazing people who have become Catholic with us, I found that I was teaching the St. Bernard’s course, for all intents and purposes, from the wealth of stories we have accumulated over the past decade.
In the past year, we have had one adult man celebrate Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist at the Easter Vigil, Allan. He and his wife Gabby were newlyweds when he started the process and she participated with him every step of the way. Also at the Vigil, Scott was received into the Church after attending Mass at St. Joe’s with his wife, Donna, for several decades! Prior to the Vigil and her April wedding, Heather completed the sacraments of Confirmation and Eucharist, having been baptized as an infant. And three young women worked with our RCIA team to celebrate Confirmation last year: Kristen, Laura and Moriah. Each of their stories is unique; each brings beautiful gifts to our parish life, living actively as Catholic disciples. God is good.
If you or someone you love would like to prepare for Baptism, Confirmation and Eucharist as an adult or youth (age 7 or older), please stop by the Gathering Space next weekend (Aug 25-26) after Mass. Our RCIA team members will be available after each Mass to answer questions. Or give me a call! We invite all to come and see what the rich tradition of our Catholic faith is all about.