The Rite of Christian Initiation (RCIA) for Children is a special program for children, ages 7 to 14, who have not been baptized.
Why is it "The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults for Children"?
The age of seven is called "the age of reason." By this age, children can have enough understanding to be responsible for their own actions. Therefore, they can make their own baptismal promises, whereas in infant baptism the parents make promises on behalf of the child. Accordingly, once a child has reached the age of 7, the Church requires that he or she then follows the preparation guidelines for RCIA, although in an age-appropriate manner. This catechesis will include learning about the Faith and especially about the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist, as well as reflection on the scripture.
When does the program take place?
The program begins on the 1st Sunday of Lent and takes place during the 11:30 am Sunday Mass. The children attend this mass with their families; during mass the children are dismissed from the church and study with their teachers until the end of Mass, when they rejoin their parents in the courtyard.
What do the children study?
The children are prepared to receive the sacraments of Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist. According to the rules of the Church, once a child has reached the age of 7, he/she then follows the preparation guidelines for RCIA as if he/she was an adult. This catechesis will include sacramental education and reflection on the scripture.
Is there a cost for this program?
There is no charge for preparation for the sacraments in the Catholic Church.
Who will be teaching the children?
Elena Melendez, the Coordinator of Religious Education for Saint Augustine Church, will teach the children.
How do I enroll my child?
Contact Elena Melendez for a family meeting and to complete the registration form before October 15, 2016 to have your child prepared to receive the sacraments in the Easter Season of 2017.