Rite of Election in St Patrick’s Cathedral
Monday 6 March 2017
Tiffany Davis, Archbishop's Office for Evangelisation
A sense of excitement and joy filled St Patrick's Cathedral on Sunday 5 March as over 1,000 people gathered for the Rite of Election, an important step in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults and Children.
Following initial enquiries about the Catholic faith, people wishing to join the Catholic Church (or renew their baptismal promises and receive the sacraments of Holy Eucharist and Confirmation at Easter) embark on a period of learning the teachings of Jesus through the Gospel. They are accompanied on this journey by their local parish who bear witness to their faith.
The wider community then welcomes these people through the Rite of Election, which takes place annually on the first Sunday of Lent at St Patrick's Cathedral. It is an important step in the RCIA/RCIC process, as it is seen as a public commitment by the candidates to pursue their faith journey and as a commitment of accompaniment by their sponsors and local parishes.
This year, 58 parishes participated in the Rite with over 230 candidates and catechumens present. It’s truly a Good News event, not only due to the sheer number of people present, but also as it is a view into the growing, multicultural and vibrant church of Melbourne.
Archbishop Hart warmly welcomed and affirmed the candidates and catechumens for their willingness to accept Jesus' invitation to 'come and see'. He also offered gratitude as he said their witness ‘helps us 'old' Catholics really rejoice and renew the faith that we want to live.’