• St Lawrence & Mary Immacualate, Balcatta   ||   St Theresa, Gwelup
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RCIA - Catechumenate

Then a person has decided to join the Catholic Church, she/he joins the Catechumenate. This begins with a Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens, which is often combined with a Rite of Welcoming for Candidates when there is a mixed group of the unbaptized and the already baptized. This rite occurs at a Sunday parish liturgy. The catechumens proclaim their readiness to accept the Gospel and candidates declare their intent to be received into full communion with the Catholic Church. The catechumens and candidates are signed with the cross on their foreheads, ears, eyes, lips, breast, shoulders, hands and feet as a sign of their readiness to bear witness to Christ with their whole lives. A Bible or cross is usually given.

The formation period of the Catechumenate can last for months or even years. Catechumens are "brought to maturity" in the faith during this period through formal study of Church teaching by a deeper commitment to living the Christian life, prayer and by witness of their faith in the world. Catechumens are considered part of the Church. If a Catechumen dies, s(he) is buried with Catholic rites. Catechumens are being formed to be members of the Body of Christ, and it is the responsibility of the entire parish, not just a few people, to participate in this formation through witness, support and prayer.

Where Are They Going?

In the early Church, only those who had been fully initiated into the faith were allowed to remain at Mass after the Liturgy of the Word. This is why, for centuries, the first part of the Mass was also known as the "Mass of the Catechumens." In that spirit, many parishes today "dismiss" catechumens, and sometimes candidates, after the Liturgy of the Word. They are not sent out into the street, however. Accompanied by a catechist, they go to reflect on the Scriptures that have been proclaimed in order to be more deeply formed in the faith.


Four stages in the RCIA:

- the Precatechumenate, or period of inquiry and evangelization;

- the Catechumenate, which is a time of serious and dedicated formation;

- the Period of Purification and Enlightenment, which coincides with Lent;

- and Mystagogy (Greek, meaning "interpretation of mystery") which lasts from Easter to Pentecost.

Mass Times

Mon - Sat 9:00am & 1st Fri of the month 7:30pm
Wed 10:30am at Gwelup

Sat 6:00pm (Vigil)
Sun 8:30am, 10:00am (Italian), 12noon (Croatian), 5:00pm
Sun 11:30am at Gwelup

Every 4th Sunday of the month at 5:00pm


Reconciliation is available every morning during the week
before 9am Mass in St Lawrence church.

Fri 8:30am - 8:55am
1st Fri 8:30am - 8:55am & 7:00pm - 7:25pm
Sat 5:15pm - 5:55pm or by appointment.
(during Advent and Lent 15 minutes before 9:00am Mass)

Sun after 11:30am Mass or by appointment.

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