I’ll be taking part in the Rite of Election tomorrow, and we received a handout that says, among other things, that the archbishop will ask “certain questions” of each person. I’m already nervous about the rite and this makes me doubly nervous because I don’t know what the questions will be or if I’ll be able to answer them well. So, what are the questions, if anyone knows?
My advice for you is, listen carefully to the question, and give the answer that is true for you. The answers are going to be Yes/No, or I do, or I will, etc. - it’s not going to be a Catechism quiz.
The goal is simply to ascertain that you have acquired faith in God over the past several weeks, and that you are not being pressured into becoming a Catholic; you are doing so of your own free will and desire.
This is what we where told would be asked in the Rite of Election tomorrow. First the sponsors/godparents will be asked some questions about our readiness then the Bishop will address the catechumens, its pretty long but the last part of it is:
"Therefore, do you wish to enter fully into the life of the Church through the sacrements of baptism, confirmation and the eucharist?
The response is: We do.
Then the bishop will say:
Then offier your names for Enrollment
After which we sign the book of the Elect.
Then the bishop will say “now I declare you to be members of the elect, to be initiated into the sacred mysteries at the next Easter Vigil”
The response is: Thanks be to God.
Ummm … I don’t have any sponsors or godparents, so how is that going to work? Can I still participate?
Are you being presented by an RCIA from a parish, or are you just kind of “showing up” on your own? (The Rite of Election is for Catechumens who have been in RCIA for at least several months, now, who have completed their Period of Catechesis, and they would have gotten their sponsors back in the first week of Advent, four weeks before Christmas, if not before.)
If you are in RCIA, and you haven’t been assigned a sponsor yet, then someone has dropped the ball, somewhere.
I have been in RCIA since September, at a parish, yes. I have told the priest (who is teaching the class) several times since the beginning that I needed godparents and that I do not know any practicing Catholics, and he kept saying he would find someone, but then he hasn’t followed up on it. :mad:
Does this mean I cannot participate? Will I not be allowed to be baptized at the Easter vigil, then?
Yes you need a godparent. Grab your RCIA director and do not let him or her go until you have one. I’m serious! Your godparent is the one who speaks on your behalf (and behalf of the Church) at the Rite of Election. Your godparent will also be present at the Scrutinies and at the Easter Vigil. I can’t believe an RCIA director or pastor would let things get to this point.
I’m in virtually the same boat, and equally as nervous
Fortunately for me though, a member of the team will be acting as my sponsor. I am sure a member of your team will as well, so long as you have been learning and in agreement/accepting the basic doctrines of the faith. The sponsors and the Catechumens are asked collectively most of the questions (the reply is “We do”) -any member of your RCIA team or team leader can and probably will stand in as your sponsor, and say “we do” for you.
Have faith, be diligent and remember the words of your first Rite
We didn’t do the Rite of Acceptance either.
I’m panicking now. Will I not be allowed to enter the Church? If they don’t let me in after all this, I think I will just give up … I feel so alone and unwelcome. :crying: Maybe God doesn’t even want me …
You haven’t done anything wrong. Don’t worry.
Your RCIA team has let you down in a major way. You should have a sponsor not just as someone to stand with you during the rites, but as a spiritual friend and mentor. I’m sorry that they weren’t looking out for you in this way.
Many blessings for your Rite of Election tomorrow. I’m looking forward to it as well.
I don’t even know anymore if I am doing the right thing … I thought it was but I don’t know everything in my life has fallen apart since I started RCIA and I have no support at all in this, my family and friends are not supportive, I have no one to talk to and not even a sponsor. If God really wanted me to do this, wouldn’t he give me some help or some signs that I was on the right path instead of one disaster after another, month after month?
And I don’t understand how I am supposed to go through the Rite of Election if there is no one to answer questions for me. Maybe they will just tell me to leave?
Perhaps one sign that you’re on the right path is that you’ve come here and there are people who are concerned about you and who will answer your questions.
I’m sure that there will be someone from your RCIA team there with you tomorrow. I think it was last year or the year before that one of the sponsors wasn’t able to be at the Rite of Election. I had the privilege of standing in as a proxy for the rite.
But perhaps this is the time to become the “squeaky wheel” with your RCIA director. Keep reminding him or her that you want and need a sponsor and you need one NOW. Do the other catechumens have sponsors? Are you the only one without?
As far as the Rite of Election, it’s really not an ordeal to go through, it’s very simple. You and the other catechumens from the various parishes will all come together and be presented to the bishop. We don’t get all that many opportunities to meet the bishop, so enjoy the experience.
Show this note to your RCIA director, and tell him that you are not leaving his office until you have a sponsor, even if he has to phone everyone in the entire Parish directory to find someone for you.
Thank to everyone who replied. I did go through the Rite of Election today. Before the rite, I told the deacon who was there from our church that I didn’t have a sponsor and he said he would be my sponsor and went up with me when I greeted the archbishop. So I guess it all turned out ok. Sorry for panicking.
These feelings remind me of some of the ways I was feeling a couple months ago. Not so much that God may not want me, but more along the lines of “why does everything keep going wrong”. I did a lot of thinking and trying to pray about it (although at times it was a little difficult to pray because of my ‘despair’. But after finally taking a step back and looking at things, it became clear to me that it wasn’t God causing these things to happen, it was the devil trying to keep me away. I tell you, I’ve never had so many things go wrong than I have since I started the RCIA process. And they all seem to happen on Sunday (Mass) or Wednesday (RCIA). Broken kitchen faucet that decided to begin spewing water all over the kitchen just an hour before I needed to leave for RCIA, colds and flu’s that hit me on those days, car acting funny, etc. But once I realized what was going on, it made it easier to say “I don’t care. I’m going anyway”.
Glad to hear it
How sad that someone doesn’t have a sponsor this late into RCIA… Sponsorship is one of the KEY elements of RCIA. I’m thinking the person who allows this to go this long believes that RCIA is about teaching doctrines, so experiencing Christ is not so important in that equation, just “knowing doctrines” = being Catholic…
To other coordinators, I’d suggest putting together a pool of people you can call. Begin with past RCIA candidates. Thus, you have a ready list of names to call in case someone doesn’t know a Catholic who can fulfill the requirments.