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Our 2017-18 program for the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) will begin with the Period of Inquiry on September 14, 2017 at 7:00 PM. We wish to invite you, as someone who might be searching for answers and a place to open your heart and mind to God, to consider joining us in our exploration of the Catholic Faith.  St. Pius X’s RCIA program could be your answer. For more information about RCIA/RCIC and/or to inquire about becoming Catholic, please call Sister Maxine at (614) 866-1575 or use our form below to contact her directly. 

Sister Maxine Shonk, O.P.
Pastoral Minister




The Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) is a process lasting from September through Pentecost Sunday during which anyone who is interested can learn more about the Catholic Religion with a view toward the possibility of becoming a full participant in it.  This initiation into the church is a process of discernment, not a one-time act, and is facilitated by a team of RCIA ministers from the parish.  It is divided into four significant phases:

1 - Period of Inquiry

This period officially begins when you make the call to St. Pius X.  Unofficially it began long before that, when you first learned about God and about Jesus Christ and wanted to learn more. This time of inquiry is a time to ask the questions and to identify just what it is you are looking for. You are partnered with a sponsor (or companion), someone from the church community who is familiar with the faith to accompany you in your faith journey, to answer/help ask the questions, and to help you discern your next step.

Based on your continuing discernment, this period ends with the Rite of Acceptance into the Catechumenate on the First Sunday of Advent when you are publicly welcomed by the faith community of St. Pius X.

2 - Period of the Catechumenate


This second stage of the discernment/ initiation process is the extended period of time when you will receive more formal instruction in Catholic practices and doctrines.

You will also begin to attend the Sunday Mass but will be dismissed after the Liturgy of the Word to discuss (“break open”) the scriptures you have just heard. This is a time for reflecting on and sharing your own faith journey with your fellow “catechumens” and sponsors.

Based on your continuing discernment, this stage concludes when you gather with all catechumens from across the Diocese of Columbus for the Rite of Election, or admission. This takes place on the first Sunday of Lent at the diocesan cathedral or a designated church and is presided over by the Bishop. The community of St. Pius X will celebrate the Rite of Sending as a way of blessing and celebrating your election.

3 - Period of Purification

This final period of preparation is one of intense, spiritual reflection that coincides with Lent. It is also known as the Period of Enlightenment … more a time for prayer and reflection than for teaching. The three purifying rituals known as the scrutinies—or examens—help to strengthen you in your discernment.

Based on your discernment, this period ends on the Sacred Triduum of Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Easter. At the Easter vigil, after sunset on Holy Saturday, you will receive the sacraments of initiation: Baptism (for those not previously baptized) Confirmation and Eucharist. You will have become fully incorporated into the body of Christ, the Church, and into the richness of the Catholic tradition. 

4 - Period of Mystagogy

The process of initiation continues after the Easter celebration. During the Easter season you and the other neophytes—the newly incorporated—gather to deepen your grasp of the great Paschal Mystery into which you have been incorporated.  Mystagogy is also about mission, going forth to continue the mission of Jesus Christ.

During this time you will spend time getting to know the church community of St. Pius X, learning about the many opportunities it offers for building community, for being of service to the Church and to the needs of the society around you, and for continued faith development and prayer.


2017-2018 Schedule

Candidates and sponsors meet weekly on Thursday at 7:00 PM in the Parish Activity Center (PAC Room) from September 14, 2017 through May 20, 2018.

Open for 2017-2018 RCIA Schedule


Month Day Topic/Event
September 14 Introduction, overview, Focus on Faith
  21 Trinity: Father (Creator), Son (Redeemer) and Holy Spirit (Sanctifier)
  28 Tour of the church
October 5 How Catholics worship: Liturgy of the Word/Liturgy of the Eucharist
  12 God’s Revelation in the Bible I: Old Testament
  19 God’s Revelation in the Bible II: New Testament
  26 Church: The Body of Christ; Sin and Grace
November 2 Teachings on Social Justice
  9 Communion of Saints; interviews for the Rite of Welcome
  12 Rite of Welcome/Acceptance at 10:15 AM Mass
    It will be followed by a welcoming reception for candidates and catechumens.
Rite of Dismissal begins each Sunday thereafter
  16 the Liturgical Year
  23 Thanksgiving: No Session
  26  Thanksgiving: No Sunday Scripture Session
  30 Role of Mary in Redemption
December 3 Advent begins
  7 Vigil for the Feast of the Immaculate Conception; meet for Liturgy in church
  14 Prayer
  21 Christmas Celebration - Potluck
  28 Christmas Break - No Session
January 4 The Sacramental Life of the Church
  11 Baptism
  18  Eucharist I: The Theology of Eucharist
  25 Eucharist II: The Spirituality of Eucharist
February 1 Confirmation
  8 Lent; Period of Purification and Enlightenment: Practices & Spirituality 
  14 Lent Begins on Ash Wednesday, February 14
  15 Anointing of the Sick; Interviews for Rite of Election
  18 Rite of Sending: the first Sunday of Lent at 10:15 AM Mass
    The St. Pius community commends the candidates and catechumens to the Bishop who,
that afternoon in the Rite of Election, will commission them, along with all other candidates
and catechumens in the diocese, to ongoing conversion and invite them into the Lenten
period of purification and enlightenment, a deeply spiritual journey.
  22 Reconciliation
March 1 Holy Orders
  8 Marriage and Family Life
  15  Christian Morality, Moral Decision Making
  22 The Easter Triduum
  8 Mystagogy - Debriefing and sharing
  15 Mystagogy - Organizations within St. Pius X
  22 Mystagogy - Outreach ministries of St. Pius X 
  29 Mystagogy - Ministries within St. Pius X
May 6 Mystagogy - Spiritual opportunities at St. Pius X
  13 Mother's Day


More about RCIA/RCIC

  • Volunteering as a Sponsor  We select sponsors from a pool of parish volunteers and match them with candidates for what we hope will be the best possible fit for their spiritual development. Sponsors are carefully vetted before being added to our pool. Sponsors must be practicing Catholics. If you are interested in applying for sponsorship, please contact Sr. Maxine Shonk at 614-861-1575 or by email to
  • Ages  This ministry is appropriate for men and women over 18 years of age.
  • Ministry Location  St. Pius X Parish Activity Center (PAC Room)
  • Designation  This ministry begins in September and continues through Pentecost Sunday. This year, Pentecost Sunday is May 20, 2018.
  • Frequency  Meetings are conducted every Thursday evening from September through Holy Week, unless a change is noted. Candidates also attend Mass and study sessions according to an RCIA schedule.
  • Time(s)  7:00 - 9:00 PM for meetings, other times as identified  
  • Other Information  Because of its purpose, commitment to serving in this ministry involves a significant number of hours. However, the depth of your growth and faith development, the involvement in your parish community, and the joy it genuinely brings others is priceless.