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The RCIA Process
--by Vickie Shepherd
The RCIA Process
It is to reject an entire worldview made-up of pride and self-affirmation,
of that pride which has truly taken human life from God and made it into darkness, death and hell.
And one can be sure that Satan will not forget this renunciation, this rejection, this challenge.
A war is declared! A fight begins whose real issue is either eternal life or eternal damnation.
For this is what Christianity is about! This is what our choice ultimately means!" (Alexander Schmemann)
Remember when you first came to the parish assembly before Advent and asked for them to welcome you as a new member of the parish family? During that Rite of Acceptance several moments of conversion were taking place and now that you look back upon that moment in time you can see where you have been and continue upon the journey; growing daily in your walk with God.
First you were signed with the Cross of Christ that you will always recognize Christ when you see Him, hear His voice when He speaks, be the voice of Jesus to others, do the work of Christ and walk the path He has set before you. As you heard these words you experienced a blessing of your senses, tingling with the realization that now you will be immersed in a new way of life--the priest then blesses your entire being with the sign of the cross. Now you accept the Cross of Christ as your sponsor presents you with it, you will wear it as a sign of your new covenant with God and you embrace the Word of God as you are presented with a Bible-God's written word.
In two weeks you will be joining us in the Easter Triduum when you will become a part of the Body of Christ and a new member of the Catholic Church. Before you can experience this rite of passage you must travel the same path that Jesus walked down.
Holy Thursday you will get a glimpse of Jesus priesthood as he shows His Apostles by example how to be the best priests they can aspire to be. He shows you how to receive Him, body, blood, soul and divinity in the Eucharistic Meal. Jesus gives you many examples of service to others that night as you watch the priest and deacons wash the feet of those who have come to be a part of our community and worship this night.
Then you travel the Way of the Cross with Jesus on Good Friday, you are asked now to embrace that very cross you accepted as a way of life just a few short months ago. The power of the Cross of Christ is something many people strive to experience and struggle to understand throughout their lives, but you have learned through a journey of conversion how to truly embrace this cross of salvation.
Holy Saturday is the day on which, you come to realize the extent of this journey you have traveled; together with the others in your group. You have shared your joys and tragedies, miracles and suffering, your everyday life with people you have grown to know and love this past year. Now on this Holy Night is your moment to shine in the brilliance of your new life in Jesus Christ, professing to the world that you believe and will follow Jesus all the days of your life.
Easter morning brings with it hope of a new life with the resurrected Jesus, praying that one day like Jesus we will also be resurrected from the dead on the last day to live eternity in Heaven.
It is through Him, with Him and in Him, in unity with the Holy Spirit, that all honor and glory are Yours Almighty Father; now and forever! Amen
©2007 Vickie Shepherd all rights reserved
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