The R.C.I.A. Team is the most crucial group of people from the parish involved in the R.C.I.A., for they guide the whole process first-hand. It is the team that first welcomes the new inquirer, listens to their stories, shares the parish and faith stories, and gently guides the individual through each of the phases of the R.C.I.A. It is the team that spends the most amount of time, quality
time, with each individual, and therefore begins the relationship of the parish to the inquirer. The team serves as Ambassadors of Welcome, on behalf of the parish community.
It stands to reason then, that the team is made up of parishioners that have made a serious, thorough commitment to the R.C.I.A. process. The R.C.I.A. process is very demanding; it calls for sacrifice, initiative, pro-active and critical thinking, follow-through, training, communication, and a sense of urgency.
While the year-round process does offer flexibility, that flexibility only works when members are actively communicating amongst each other and the Director, out of concern for the well-being of each meeting. Members are expected to be pro-active in their planning, whether or not they are serving at a particular meeting. To be committed means to not only be present when one is scheduled, but to be mindful and concerned about the success of each meeting with the following concerns:
What are the qualities of an ideal R.C.I.A. Team member?
- Are there enough team members to serve?
- What is the topic to be discussed, and how I can contribute?
- If it's my turn to serve, is my topic prepared well in advance, and have I communicated/collaborated with the others and the Director in advance?
- What is needed at the meeting in terms of set-up, and is there someone there to get any equipment or supplies ready?
- Have I prayed for my team members for the success of each meeting?
- Have I prepared myself to discuss each topic well before the meeting (study, reflection, research)?
: Ministry is by its very nature, messy - even with the best preparations. Equipment fails, rooms get switched, people get sick, etc. The ideal team member is able to "roll with the punches" when the situation arises.
: R.C.I.A. is demanding, but this demand is less cumbersome when team members commit themselves to its total success, and make it a priority of their life as Christians.
: The R.C.I.A. is under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Team members are at their best when they entrust themselves to the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, and become witnesses to the continual, life-long need to learn and grow in the faith.
: Each individual member of the team has an important role to play. Team members need to be able to rely on each other at all times, but especially in times of doubt, struggle, and pressure.
: The team members serve primarily as witnesses to the faith, to Jesus Christ. An ideal team member is one of prayer, and action that is consistent with our Catholic tradition. To be faith-filled does not mean one is without faults, or acts holier than thou, but strives above all to be Christ-like.