The Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) program welcomes those at UIC who would like to learn more about the Catholic Faith. There is no commitment by participating in the RCIA program. However, after you have experienced it and if you feel called to join The Church through Holy Baptism or Holy Confirmation, you’ll be welcomed into the Catholic Community at Easter. RCIA meets for one hour every week from September until the end of April.
When: Thursdays from 5pm to 6pm
Where: Quiet Study Space OR Newman Conference Room
Who: Any interested UIC student looking to learn more about the teachings of the Catholic faith.
What are the requirements?
RCIA is an opportunity to give you the tools you need to live out your true identity as a daughter or son of God and to be a missionary disciple in the world. In order to do this, it requires commitment, so here are a few of our expectations for anyone participating in our RCIA program:
- Attend every RCIA session, which will occur on Thursdays from 5pm-6pm at the Newman Center, either in Cor Coffee, the Quiet Study Space, or in the Newman Conference Room. Since life is bound to happen, we will accept two excused absences, as long as they are communicated to us in advance. Our final session would occur the week before spring semester finals. We’ll give you a full schedule at our first RCIA session.
- Attend our 11am Sunday Mass every week at the Newman Center. This expectation will help you to begin integrating yourself into our community and to get in the habit of attending every Sunday since we are morally obligated to as Catholics!
- Participate in one of our Bible Studies here at the Newman Center. Our Bible Studies happen for an hour each week and occur on various days of the week, so we will help you find one that fits best in your schedule. This will be helpful for exploring God’s Word outside of our RCIA sessions and for building community with other UIC students, who are also striving to grow in their relationship with God.
- Attend our Spring Retreat. This retreat will be one weekend (Friday evening through Sunday afternoon) in February or March. The official date will be shared at the RCIA info session at the beginning of each school year. Scholarships for that retreat will be available as needed.
How do I register?
Sign up via the link above!
How long does the RCIA process last?
For most people, the process lasts two semesters, starting in September and ending a few weeks after Easter.
What if I have a scheduling conflict the time of the meetings?
No problem! We’ll work with you to find a solution. We don’t want this to be the only obstacle between you and learning more about the Catholic Faith.
Who should attend the classes?
RCIA is for:
1. Adults who want to be baptized.
2. Baptized Christians of other faith traditions who are interested in learning more about the Catholic faith or becoming Catholic.
3. Baptized Catholics who have not yet received their first Communion or Confirmation.
4. Any Catholic looking to deepen his/her knowledge of the Catholic Faith.
Can non-students join the program?
From time to time, we do have adults join who are not students; however, the class is primarily geared toward students. If you would prefer a different format, we can direct you to an appropriate parish nearby.
If I’m a non-Catholic but want to attend RCIA, will I be pressured to become Catholic?
Not at all! We simply want to assist you in discerning God’s will for your life at this time through prayer, answering questions, and discussion. We are merely here to help in whatever way we can.
What if I don’t believe the Teachings of the Catholic Church?
We understand that many people do not agree with the Catholic Church on many topics. Don’t let this hold you back! We welcome all students and will eloquently address the topics on your mind. From the theological teachings of our faith to the teachings on social and human rights issues, our hope is that you will at least have a better understanding of why the Catholic Church teaches what it does.
Where can I go to learn more about RCIA?
There are many great online sources for information. We recommend starting with the USCCB‘s website.
What if I have another question?
Call us at 312-226-1880 or email our Director of Campus Ministry, Becca Siar.