Becoming Catholic

"My heart is restless O' Lord, until it rests in You."

-ST. AUGUSTINE

A Journey of Faith

Whatever your reason is for visiting this page, we are all on a journey through life and we all seek the same things. We all hunger for more. We all desire truth - no one wants to be lied to or deceived. We all want beauty - we long to encounter beauty in the grandeur of creation from the universe down to each individual person. Finally, we all seek goodness - we constantly strive to improve ourselves and the world around us.

As Catholics, we are on this same journey with you. Through the guidance of the Church we look to God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit as the source of all truth, beauty, and goodness. We look to the Most Holy Trinity for the answers to life's most difficult questions. We believe in God the Father, the loving creator of everything in this world. We believe that He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, into the world. We believe that Jesus died, was buried, and rose again from the dead. We believe that He left His Church - the Catholic Church, to evangelize all the corners of the world and bring others to truth, beauty, and goodness.

Those are bold claims. We profess them proudly, yet humbly. We would love to share those beliefs with you. What we want most of all is to fulfill Jesus' desire and help you get to Heaven, where all the faithful will be with God for all eternity.

Yet, for those who are not Catholic, how does one become Catholic? We have a process called the Rite of Christian Initiation, commonly referred to as R.C.I.A. It is through this process that we introduce Christianity: the moral life, the devotional life, our beliefs, and teachings. And, if you elect to do so, you will enter into the Catholic Church at our Easter Vigil mass, the night before Easter.

"There are not one hundred people in the United States who hate The Catholic Church, but there are millions who hate what they wrongly perceive the Catholic Church to be."
-ARCHBISHOP FULTON J. SHEEN

The Process

The process by which someone becomes Catholic is often called "The Rite of Christian Initiation" (R.C.I.A.).  Please contact the parish if you are interested and we will assist you every step of the way. Below is a brief overview of the general process:



Period of Inquiry


At this stage of the process, you will be able to ask questions, seek clarification, and learn more about our faith. There is no obligation to proceed beyond this point, and everyone is free to choose whether or not they want to continue. This is when the Church is able to gather more information about your particular situation. For example, they will determine if you have already been Baptized and if there are any obstacles that will need to be overcome before you are able to enter the Church. Once the information is gathered and a plan is set for any obstacles, if you desire, then you will move on to the period of the catechumenate.



Catechumenate


At this stage, you will be known as a "Catechumen" - an unbaptized person preparing to enter the Church - or a "Candidate" - someone who is already Baptized, but will be entering into the fullness of the Church. At this point, the process becomes more structured as you will enter into a deeper reflection of the Catholic faith through attending classes that will guide you through the teachings of the Church. Typically this will begin in the Fall and end with Easter.

Easter Vigil


At the Easter Vigil Mass, you will enter into full communion with the Catholic Church. This Mass is the epitome of the entire liturgical year and it is the most beautiful Mass of the year! It is centered around the most fundamental aspects of our Faith - the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. At this Mass, if you have not been Baptized, you will be baptized, washing away the stain of Original Sin and conforming you to Christ.  All Catechumens and Candidates will be Confirmed, sealed with the Holy Spirit. Finally, you will receive the Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity of our Lord Jesus Christ in the Eucharist. Now we rejoice together! As you will be a full member of the Catholic Church, one of our newest parishioners,  and able to fully participate in the life of our Church.

"If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world ablaze!"
Saint Catherine of Sienna

The Next Step

After learning about the faith and entering the Catholic Church, especially after the initial euphoria wanes and dies down, what else is there to do? How can we persevere in the journey for holiness and follow God's will for us? What do we do when that great 'feeling' of joy and excitement that we had during the R.C.I.A process goes away? Should we leave and join another Church in order to rekindle that 'feeling'?

The way to grow more fully in the Church is not to leave, but to give of oneself in the model of Jesus Christ. It is to continue to study the faith and gain deeper insights into the teachings of the Church. To always be challenging yourself to grow deeper spiritually in prayer and holiness. To freely give of your time, talents, and treasure with acts of charity for your family and neighbors. And all of this needs to be rooted and nourished in the Sacraments of Jesus Christ.  Our parish has many opportunities to do these very things. Below are some of those opportunities:

Mass


St. Padre Pio captures the importance of the Mass beautifully: "It is easier for the earth to exist without the sun than without the holy Sacrifice of the Mass." Each week, at the Mass, we enter into Heaven with all of the Saints and Angels. During the Mass, we join Jesus Christ in His worship of God the Father through His ultimate act of sacrificial love: the Cross.  We are nourished by the Word of God and the Most Holy Eucharist--the source and summit of our Faith. We are able to join Christ on the Cross through offering up our sins, our failings, and our very lives to Him.

Service


Service to God and to others is inseparable from loving Christ. As Jesus said to his disciples in the Gospel of Matthew, "whatsoever you did for others, you did it for Me."

Holy Angels has several ways that you can serve others. From assisting in the Mass as a Lector to volunteering at the Holy Angels Soup Kitchen. If you are looking for a deeper connection with God, then serving others selflessly will help you do that. Please review our various ministries by checking out the links in 'MINISTRIES' tab in the menu above.

Participate


As a parishioner of Holy Angels, we have many events throughout the year. From our annual Parish Picnic to Youth Group, Young Adult, and other ministries, you are sure to find something you will enjoy doing.

A parish is a family, and part of being a family is to spend time with one another. We encourage and welcome each parishioner to share their gifts through taking an active role in our parish life.