Sacraments of Initiation
The Sacraments of Initiation integrate the formal process by which adults are finally admitted to the Catholic Church. Usually performed at the Easter Vigil on Holy Saturday, they include Baptism, Confirmation, and receiving the Eucharist. Only people who have never been baptized in a Christian church undergo all three sacraments.
The rite of Baptism symbolizes the death of the old sinful person and the creation of a new person in Christ. The convert must renounce Satan and make a profession of faith. Then, he or she is baptized “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” The baptized are dressed in white to symbolize their rebirth and purity.
The second rite, Confirmation, completes the renewal experienced in Baptism. Anointing with sacred chrism seals and strengthens the newly baptized Christians. The Church prays that the Spirit be poured forth upon the new Christians to anoint them to be more like Christ.
The final act that makes the adult convert a full member of the Church is the taking of the Eucharist. Faithful and active participation at the Eucharistic table of the Lord as apostles and witnesses is the goal of Christian initiation. In sharing the bread and wine, which Catholics believe becomes the Body and Blood of Christ, each person becomes one with the Christian community and the Church.Period of Mystagogy
In the fifty days following the celebration of Christian initiation, newly baptized converts continue their program of Christian formation. They can participate fully with the faithful in Eucharist and in the mission of the Church for justice and peace. This period of
For the first year after they are accepted to the Church, newly baptized Christians are called “neophytes.” The term derives from the Greek word