The Atlanta Forum for the RCIA includes parish leaders experience in Initiation Ministry. Our mission is to promote throughout the Archdiocese of Atlanta the vision and the full implementation of the Rite of Christian Initiation as promulgated in the text of the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (NCCB, 1988). Every few months we provide an opportunity for RCIA leaders and team members from around the Archdiocese to gather together to network and to focus on a topic relevant to Initiation ministry. We call these gatherings the “Open Forum.”
Because of the pandemic, the last few Open Forum meetings have been held virtually hosted by the Archdiocesan Office for Formation and Discipleship. The topic for our gathering in September was Virtual RCIA presented by Lorraine Miller, Director of Faith Formation and Darleine Arce, Coordinator of Catechetical Ministry. Both are from St. Philip Benizi in Jonesboro.
The presentation began with a discussion of the reality yet real concerns of the digital world that need to be considered when using it for the RCIA or any ministry. We explored some of the science, social limitations and spiritual cautions which impress upon us to use virtual technology in moderation. While we are currently immersed in a virtual world, real life relationships are essential in the RCIA! We discussed the importance of a hybrid approach when implementing the RCIA process.
The discussion also addressed safety concerns, platforms that may be used, communication tools, and apps that may enhance presentations. Digital resources were included as well since many publishing companies now offer digital components. For example, did you know that Liguori’s Journey of Faith will offer its materials digitally soon? We concluded with an opportunity for participants to address questions about other aspects of virtual technology in the RCIA including how they are doing interviews, how they are encouraging sponsors to meet in person with their seeker, and how they are providing content.
Watch for the monthly newsletters Michele McHale-Pickard for regular information about RCIA in the Archdiocese and for news of the topic of the next Open Forum. We hope you’ll join the conversation about this ministry that we love.