Could you be a part of the Catholic church without joining?

Let’s say you really enjoyed going to mass and agree with many of the teachings of the Catholic church but there were some things you don’t understand and/or agree with so you couldn’t join the Catholic church. Could you still go to mass and be part of the Catholic church in other areas that didn’t require that you teach doctrine? or if you do go to RCIA, could you remain there indefinitely?

There’s never pressure on someone in RCIA to receive the sacraments if they don’t feel ready. So yes, you could remain in RCIA for some time without a problem. Hopefully time in RCIA would help you understand those things that you don’t understand now. Talk with your RCIA director and talk with us…we’d be happy to help.

Attending RCIA classes is not a commitment. No one is required to become Catholic. I’ve known people who attended RCIA several years in a row and either did not become Catholic or eventually did. It takes time to clear up any doubts you may have.

Anyone is welcome to attend Mass. Just don’t go to communion unless you are actually Catholic and in the state of grace.

God is calling you :smiley:

Please do not rely on the weekend warriors to explain to you where the catholic church comes from. They are wonderful faith filled belivers, but, do not know how to explain the faith.

Go to RCIA and allow them to show you where biblically we get…Confession…Communion… Intersession of Saints… Mary… The list goes on.

I know at first glimpse it is hard to see, trust me, or in better words, trust in HIM and he will lead you to happiness. :thumbsup:



Anyone can do anything a Catholic does, except receive communion. Stick with the RCIA, you can make the decision to fully join the Church, anytime you are ready, no pressure (really!).

You could still go to Mass but you could not receive the Eucharist until you was baptized and confirmed as a Catholic.

You could attend mass, but that doesn’t make you a Catholic. So techinically not a *part *of the Church.

If you have been baptized, then you are already part of the one Body of Christ, the Catholic Church. However, you are not formally a member until you are received into the Church.

Go to RCIA. Read good books. Pray. Ask us questions.

Thanks everyone. Is it too late to join RCIA for the year?

No. You can start going to the RCIA meetings anytime. Just check with the RCIA director.

For those that are for sure wanting to join the Church you have to be part of RCIA by a certain date, but I’m not sure what that is. If you are just inquiring, this wont affect you anyways.

Important advice: If it’s past the above cut off date it’s possible that the RCIA person that you talk to will mistake you for someone that for sure wants to join and they might say it’s too late, but really what they mean is it’s too late to start RCIA if you are wanting to join the Church at Easter. If this happens simply tell the RCIA person that you understand it’s too late to join the Church this year, but you would still like to start coming to see what it’s like and to start learning . That you aren’t sure if you even want to join. I’m sure they will gladly allow you to come.

Check with your local parish.

Ideally RCIA runs on a year-round basis and people can start at different times. Unfortunately many parishes use the school year calendar and start in September.

Talk with your RCIA director and see what your options are at your parish.

Being allowed to join RCIA right now varies from parish to parish. In my parish you would not be allowed to come to the RCIA classes right now even if you did not want to join the church this year. Unfortunately mine is one of the parishes that does not have year round RCIA and there is no inquiry class either. The reason they would not be allowed to join our class this year according to the deacon running our RCIA is because we have already bonded as a class and we open up and are willing to share with one another. If someone new came in they may feel left out of that bond or we may not feel as open to sharing with someone new.

There are a couple of other larger churches in my diocese that do have a year round inquiry class that someone can join at anytime. Our deacon refers people to these inquiry sessions at the other parishes.


anyone could attend Mass :slight_smile: however, only Catholics can receive the Eucharist…and this is because to receive it, a person should believe in the real presence, and have gone to Confession (it says in the Bible that people in the early Church have even died from receiving unworthily :frowning: so this is pretty important).

You could be in the “looking into Catholicism” stage for as long as you want… but this might eventually become difficult, not being able to receive the Eucharist, not feeling you’re “home”, etc. What I suggest is learning more about Catholicism and dealing specifically with those issues that you’re struggling with. In my conversion, there were times when I felt SURE I’d never agree with certain doctrines… but eventually I found myself agreeing with them. Try to research and pray as much as you can. Try to stay open to God… If you feel drawn to Mass, there must be a reason…

also, if you take RCIA, you don’t have to become Catholic at the end. There’s no pressure. :slight_smile:

God bless

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