Order of Christian Initiation of Adults (OCIA)

Welcome! For the past 2,000 years, the Catholic Church, founded by Jesus Christ, continues to serve millions of people by helping them to answer life's most important questions and by leading them to the fullness of happiness.

We invite you to find out about Jesus, the Church He founded, and the meaning and purpose only found in Him. It is always a joyous occasion when a person chooses to learn more about the Catholic Church.

Anyone interested in becoming a fully initiated Catholic participates in a process of formation. Those not yet baptized participate in a process called OCIA. OCIA stands for the "Order of Christian Initiation of Adults". In OCIA, adults are gradually introduced to the beliefs, worship and life of the Christian.

Adult Catholics preparing for Confirmation and/or First Communion, or baptized Christians interested in becoming Catholic will receive their formation alongside those in OCIA. Each participant in OCIA & Adult Sacramental Preparation has a sponsor, a fully initiated Catholic, to walk him/her through this process.

The OCIA Process

  1. Inquiry Sessions
    Inquiry sessions are for those interested in learning, without any pressure or commitment, about Jesus Christ and the teachings of His Church. Inquiry is for adults who:

    • Want to know the basics about Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church
    • Have never been baptized
    • Those that have been baptized but have not been Confirmed in the Catholic Church are also welcome!
  2. Teaching the Catholic Faith
    Following Inquiry is a period of formal instruction known as 'catechesis'. This formation helps a person establish roots in his/her faith in Christ and to learn how the faith is lived in daily life.

    This part of the process walks the participant through the key events of Scripture and shows how the teachings of the Catholic Church flow from the Bible. This formation is specifically for those preparing for the sacraments of either Baptism, Confirmation and/or Holy Communion. Please contact the Parish Office for more information on these sessions.

  3. Prayer
    After having been introduced to the intellectual tradition of the Catholic Church, participants begin their more immediate preparation to receive the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and/or Holy Communion.

    This period of prayer, fasting, and turning away from sin, known as the stage of 'Purification and Enlightenment,' begins with Ash Wednesday and lasts throughout Lent. This period culminates with the Easter Vigil - the Mass celebrated the night before Easter Sunday. During this Mass, participants receive the Sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation and the Eucharist.

  4. Post-Baptismal Sessions
    The period of formation after Easter is known as 'Mystagogia', in which the participant reflects on the graces received in Baptism, Confirmation and the Eucharist. It is a time to look at how Christ calls us to a life of service and stewardship.