The “Introduction” section of RCIA provides priests, deacons, and catechists with important information and guidance necessary for understanding the structure of RCIA, the formation process, and implementation of its various steps and periods.

This set of videos is designed to guide facilitators and Catholic educators, whether they are priests, deacons, or catechists, through some of the main content found in the “Introduction” of the RCIA Study Edition, approved for use in the dioceses of the United States by the USCCB and confirmed by the Apostolic See.

The topics we’ll cover include:

  • Intended recipients of the RCIA program
  • Structure of the RCIA
  • Ministries and offices: faithful, sponsors, and godparents.
  • Ministries and offices: bishops, priests, deacons, and catechists
  • The time and place of Christian initiation
  • Christian initiation outside of the usual times
  • Adaptations approved by Bishops’ Conferences, the bishop, and ministers


Rest assured, we’ve made every effort in this series of videos to provide you with the knowledge you need to facilitate an RCIA program with confidence.

May our Lord Jesus Christ bestow his grace and peace upon you, and support you in your work for his holy Church.

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Course curriculum

  • 01

    An Introduction to RCIA - For Catechists - Contents: Introduction with 'Certificate of Completion'

    • How to get your 'Certificate of Completion'

  • 02

    Lesson 1 - Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: Introduction

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 1 - Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: Introduction - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 1 - Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults: Introduction - VIDEO

  • 03

    Lesson 2 - Structure of The Initiation of Adults

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 2 - Structure of The Initiation of Adults - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 2 - Structure of The Initiation of Adults - VIDEO

  • 04

    Lesson 3 - Ministries and Offices: Faithful, Sponsors, and Godparents

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 3 - Ministries and Offices: Faithful, Sponsors, and Godparents - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 3 - Ministries and Offices: Faithful, Sponsors, and Godparents - VIDEO

  • 05

    Lesson 4 - Ministries and Offices: Bishops, Priests, Deacons, and Catechists

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 4 - Ministries and Offices: Bishops, Priests, Deacons, and Catechists - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 4 - Ministries and Offices: Bishops, Priests, Deacons, and Catechists - VIDEO

  • 06

    Lesson 5 - Time and Place of Initiation

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 5 - Time and Place of Initiation - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 5 - Time and Place of Initiation - VIDEO

  • 07

    Lesson 6 - Initiation Outside of The Usual Times

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 6 - Initiation Outside of The Usual Times - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 6 - Initiation Outside of The Usual Times - VIDEO

  • 08

    Lesson 7 - Adaptations Approved by Bishops Conferences, The Bishop, and Ministers

    • Introduction

    • Resources for Students, Parents, and Teachers

    • Lesson 7 - Adaptations Approved by Bishops Conferences, The Bishop, and Ministers - LESSON PLAN / STUDY GUIDE

    • Lesson 7 - Adaptations Approved by Bishops Conferences, The Bishop, and Ministers - VIDEO

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Instructor(s)

Instructor Bio:

Deacon Frederick Bartels is a member of the Catholic clergy who serves the Church in the diocese of Pueblo, CO. He received an MA in Theology and Educational Ministry from Catholic Distance University, where he is currently employed as an adjunct professor of theology. He is founder and editor of Joy In Truth (joyintruth.com), an online magazine dedicated to the New Evangelization. As a Catholic educator, public speaker and evangelist, Deacon Bartels strives to infuse culture with the saving principles of the gospel. He lives in Colorado with his wife, Shelly, and the youngest two of their six children. Professor Bartels is Chairman of the Theology Department.

Deacon Frederick Bartels

Professor of Theology, Department Chair