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Welcoming New Members and Renewing Our Parish in Faith

Let us know if you're interested in taking the first steps to join the Catholic Church!

The Order of Christian Initiation for Adults (OCIA) -- formerly known as RCIA--is the process by which individuals join the Catholic Church. A new season begins each September, members are brought into the Church at the Easter Vigil, and the sessions culminate with Pentecost.

A team of individuals with past experience facilitates the process. Volunteers are needed for Hospitality, Catechesis and Parish Sponsors. Parishioners always share how rewarding they find their involvement and how much they learn about their own faith. It’s a wonderful opportunity to become active in a small group setting and welcome the “newcomers” to our faith.


O.C.I.A. is for any adult interested in learning about the Church and/or becoming a Catholic Christian. Those just starting the process are called Inquirers. When they become ready to commit to becoming members of the Church, they move on to the next steps of the process. If they have not been baptized, they are called Catechumens. If they have already been baptized, they are called Candidates.


O.C.I.A. forms today’s inquirers into tomorrow’s faithful, welcomes baptized persons of other faith communities as gifts to enrich our Church, and serves as a sign of the on-going need for conversion and renewal in the St. Mary Community.

Order of Christian Initiation for Adults - Adapted for Children

When a child is registered for PSR with little or no religious education background, it becomes necessary for them to follow an adjusted plan in order to complete the steps toward initiation into the Church.

If the child has not been baptized then they and their parents will be catechized and prepared to receive the sacrament. An age-appropriate catechism booklet will be given to the child for completion at home. A catechist will also meet with the child, individually or in a small group, to provide background and instruction in the Catholic faith.

Following baptismal instruction, the child will then be ready to be catechized for the reception of the Sacraments of Reconciliation and First Eucharist. When appropriate, every effort will be made to assist the child in attaining a level of knowledge that will permit them to participate in the PSR classroom with their grade-level peers.

The OCIA (adapted for Children) Team Leader will meet with the parents and the child to assess when/ if they are ready to receive Reconciliation and First Eucharist and/ or Confirmation.

** Catechesis of the Good Shepherd Registration is currently OPEN for the 2024-2025 school year **

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