BECOMING A CATHOLIC CHRISTIAN
“Across the country, the first weekend of Lent saw groups coming together to celebrate their decision to become Catholics.
‘I didn’t have any religious upbringing, and prayers and church were not part of my experience at all. There wasn’t much of anything faith wise, to be honest. I went to the occasional baptism, wedding and funeral, but didn’t have any spiritual awareness,’ said Karen from the Shrewsbury Diocese.
THE DECISION TO BECOME A CATHOLIC HAS COME ABOUT GRADUALLY
‘The decision to become a Catholic has come about gradually over two years. I would recommend exploring becoming a Catholic to anyone!’
This year over 3,500 people came together in cathedrals for the Rite of Election celebration. It is an annual moment in the Catholic calendar when adults share their intention, in a public way, to become Catholics. Bishop Kieran Conry is the national Chair of the Bishops’ Department that oversees the work of Catholic evangelisation and said: ‘This is one of the most joyful and expectant times of the year for those adults, and some children, who have chosen to prepare to become Catholics at Easter. It’s important that we celebrate with them, that we share their joy, and are also attentive, if and when the moment presents itself, to invite those we know to consider finding out more about the Catholic Faith.’
Each year a breakdown of the number of people who participated in the Rite of Election is published on the Bishops’ Conference website. The numbers offered are not fully reflective of the total number of people who will be received into the Church at Easter. In many dioceses, for reasons related to geography, only a small proportion of parishes are able to participate in the Rite of Election.
The figures provided therefore only provide a snapshot of the overall numbers collated by the Bishops’ Home Mission Deck in partnership with the RCIA Network.”
– This article was published in “The Catholic Universe” issue Sunday 23rd March, 2014. For subscriptions please visit http://www.thecatholicuniverse.com (external link).