Want to learn more about what it means to be Catholic?

We invite you to join us for a remarkable journey!


The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) is not a program, but a sacramental formation process that prepares you for a life of spiritual conversion.


Through the workings of the Holy Spirit, the liturgical Rites, the prayerful support of the Church community and a truly dedicated team of people sharing the faith and walking the journey with you, it is our hope that you will enter into a deeper union with Christ on a level that is truly life-changing.


The RCIA process is really one rite divided into different periods throughout a time-frame that typically lasts 8-9 months. Know that throughout this entire faith formation process that you will never be asked to walk alone.  The RCIA team will be there with you every step of the way.


“Blessed are you that hunger now, for you shall be satisfied.”  Luke 6:21

Who is RCIA for?


  • Non-Baptized adults who want to be initiated as a Christian in the tradition of the Catholic Church.
  • Baptized Non-Catholic Christians who desire full Christian communion with the Catholic Church.
  • Baptized Catholics who have not had First Eucharist and Confirmation.
  • Catholics who desire a formal program of adult-based catechetical studies of their Catholic faith.
  • Catholics who desire to undergo their own faith renewal.

When does RCIA held?


RCIA instruction at St. Vincent de Paul parish can begin anytime throughout the year. 


However, typically instruction begins in September and continues through the celebration of the Easter season the following year. 


The RCIA classes currently meet on Wednesday from 6:30 – 8pm in the Upper Meeting Room behind the church sanctuary. 

The following are the various sections outline the stages in the RCIA proces journey.


Period of Inquiry


This is the time (no fixed duration or structure) for asking questions and getting answers.  It is when the Gospel message is presented and you decide if you want to formally continue with the spiritual conversion process.  This will lead to the Rites of Acceptance & Welcoming.  If you have decided to continue, then you formally accept the invitation from the Church to continue your spiritual journey.  In reciprocity, the Church formally welcomes you to our community.  These Rites are liturgical ceremonies at St. Vincent de Paul Church, publicly marking the beginning of your journey.

Period of Catechumenate


This is the longest period where you will receive instruction in the Catholic faith.  This will lead to the Rites of Sending & Election.  After a period of discernment and learning about the Catholic faith, the St. Vincent de Paul community will formally send you to the Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Springfield-Cape Girardeau, where he welcomes you (and hundreds of others on their journeys of faith) and gives witness on behalf of the entire diocesan community that you agree to embrace the mission of Jesus as you continue with the process of conversion.

Period of Enlightment


This is the time during Lent where there is a greater emphasis on your internal commitment to embracing a life in Christ.  This will lead to the Celebration of the Sacraments of Initiation.  The Sacraments of Baptism, Eucharist and Confirmation are celebrated by you for the first time during the Easter Vigil, thereby bringing you into full communion with the Catholic Church.


The Sacrament of Baptism is the foundation of life in the Holy Spirit and through it we become the sons and daughters of God where we are given a share in the divinity of Christ and in His mission of salvation.


The Sacrament of Eucharist is the real presence of Christ given to us by Him to feed our souls.  It is a celebration of thanksgiving that commemorates Christ’s sacrifice and offer of salvation.


The Sacrament of Confirmation is where the Holy Spirit strengthens the Baptized so that the individual may live out the faith that is professed.

Period of Mystagogy


After you have received the sacraments of initiation, reflection continues on the sacraments, especially the Eucharist, which is the source and summit of the Catholic faith.  This period is designed to help you understand the importance of the sacramental life and how closely related the sacraments are to your journey of faith.  


Even though the RCIA sessions eventually come to an end, the conversion process continues with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the sacraments, and the support of the entire church community – the true Body of Christ.