“At the Last Supper, on the night he was betrayed, our Savior instituted the Eucharistic sacrifice of his Body and Blood. This he did in order to perpetuate the sacrifice of the cross throughout the ages until he should come again.
—1323 Catechism of the Catholic Church
The process by which a Baptized Catholic ADULT receives the Sacrament of Eucharist (Holy Communion) and also the Sacrament of Confirmation is through the Order of Christian Initiation of Adults (OCIA).
Sacrament of Eucharist (Holy Communion)
The Eucharist occupies a unique place as the “Sacrament of sacraments”: all the other sacraments are ordered to it as to their end.” —1211 CCC
The Holy Eucharist completes Christian initiation. —1322 CCC
The Eucharist is “the source and summit of the Christian life.” For in the blessed Eucharist is contained the whole spiritual good of the Church, namely Christ himself, our Pasch.” —1324 CCC
The Eucharist is the sum and summary of our faith: “Our way of thinking is attuned to the Eucharist, and the Eucharist in turn confirms our way of thinking.” —1327 CCC
Sacrament of Confirmation
Baptism, the Eucharist, and the Sacrament of Confirmation together constitute the “Sacraments of Christian Initiation,” whose unity must be safeguarded. The reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of Baptismal grace. For “by the Sacrament of Confirmation, [the Baptized] are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed.” —1285 CCC
From the time of the apostles, becoming a Christian has been accomplished by a journey and initiation in several stages. This journey can be covered rapidly or slowly, but certain essential elements will always have to be present: proclamation of the Word, acceptance of the Gospel entailing conversion, profession of faith, Baptism itself, the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, and admission to Eucharistic communion. —1229 CCC
What is OCIA?
- It is an initiation process by which individuals are received into the fullness of the Catholic Church through reception of the
Sacraments of Christian Initiation: Baptism; Confirmation; and Eucharist (Holy Communion).
It is a journey of conversion comprised of four stages and Rites, a time of formation, a faith journey, and a time to discuss how Jesus has worked in one’s life.
The format includes prayer and instruction in Catholic traditions and teaching, along with lively discussions. OCIA provides the opportunity for one to come to know Christ personally through the Catholic Christian community.
Who is OCIA Intended For? A Person Who . . .
- Has never been baptized and desires to learn more about the Catholic Church and its teachings, with the goal of becoming a Catholic Christian;
- Was baptized in another Christian faith-tradition and desires to be in full communion with the Catholic Church;
- Was baptized Catholic and desires completion of the Christian Initiation Sacraments: Confirmation and/or Eucharist (Holy Communion);
- A Returning Catholic who has been away from the Church for a while and desires to become fully reconciled in order to once again receive the Sacraments.
Resources available for private study:
Register at: www.FORMED.org; Access Code: 4KR96N (case sensitive)
Catholicism is an entire way of life; therefore, through beautifully crafted teaching and state-of-the-art video, author, speaker and theologian Dr. Edward Sri leads a team of dynamic teachers who provide a clear and comprehensive explanation of the Catholic faith.
How Often Does OCIA Meet?
The sessions are held on Sundays from 9:30 am to 11:00 am September through Pentecost, in the Parish Hall. We also offer a “Year-Round Process” so you may inquire or participate any time throughout the year.
Sundays 9:30 am to 11:00 am in Parish Hall
Welcome and fellowship
Session, including Discussion and Sharing, Q&A
Area of Study Includes
- The Trinity, Faith, and the God Who is Love
- Divine Revelation: God Seeks Us
- The Bible: God's Love Letter to Humanity
- Story of Salvation: Creation, Fall, Redemption
- Who is Jesus? Just a Good Man or Lord of our Lives?
- The Paschal Mystery: Jesus' Death and Resurrection
- The Holy Spirit and the Life of Grace
- Why Do I Need the Church?
- Mary and the Saints
- The Last Things: What Happens After We Die?
- The Seven Sacraments
- Walk Through the Mass: Sacred Liturgy
- Catholic Moral Vision: Virtue, Grace, and the Path to Happiness
- Church History, Papacy; Magisterium
- Traditions of Prayer; The Holy Rosary
- Tour of the Church
- A Love That Lasts: Discovering Authentic Love and God's Plan for Sexuality
- Catholic Social Teaching
- Questions, questions, questions, and much more!
Outline of the OCIA Process
1. Period of Inquiry or Pre-Catechumenate
This is a time for inquiry and introduction to Gospel values—an opportunity for the beginnings of faith.
2. Period of the Catechumenate
This is a time for the nurturing and growth of the catechumens’ faith and conversion to God; celebrations of the Word and prayers and blessings are meant to assist the process.
3. Period of Purification and Enlightenment
During the Lenten season and immediately preceding the elect’s initiation at the Easter Vigil Liturgy on Holy Saturday, this is a time of reflection, intensely centered on conversion, marked by the celebration of the Scrutinies, Presentations of the Creed and the Lord’s Prayer, and a Retreat.
4. Period of Postbaptismal Catechesis or Mystagogy
This is a time during the Easter season that follows the celebration of the Christian Initiation Sacraments at the Easter Vigil Liturgy on Holy Saturday. The newly initiated fully experience being a part of the Catholic Christian community by means of pertinent catechesis. They now participate fully in the Sunday Eucharistic celebrations.
When Will I Make My First Holy Communion?
After faithfully attending the OCIA process through Period Three and attending Mass each Sunday, participants will receive the Sacrament of Eucharist and the Sacrament of Confirmation usually after Easter of the following year.
The OCIA Team
In addition to our Pastor, Rev. Paul Pecchie, the Team consists of a dedicated group of Catholic Christian catechists who have a love of our Lord and a strong desire and passion to share their faith with those exploring the OCIA process.
The Team is eager to travel with you on your Journey of Faith, be there for you to answer your questions, and welcome you in Christian love.
How Do I Begin?
If you are interested in receiving the Sacraments of Eucharist (Holy Communion) and Confirmation, please contact OCIA Co-Director Michele Niemier in the parish office at 352-796-2096, ext. 108, or e-mail at [email protected].
Testimonies from Past OCIA Participants . . .
"I feel more in touch with Christ since I started the OCIA process. It has brought me and my family closer together.”
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“It was an incredible experience and I should have done it sooner.
I enjoyed every minute and feel it taught me so many important things about Jesus and the Catholic faith.”
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"The OCIA process strengthened my beliefs and understandings of what Jesus sacrificed for us.”
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“I felt cared for and supported. The Role of Sponsor is significant; I have a new good friend now who is my sponsor.
Budding relationships with other seekers, hopefully, will develop into lasting friendships.”
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COME AND SEE!