Nearly 300 to take next step in faith journey during Rites of Election

Sister Paulette Joerger, OP, of St. Malachy Parish in Rantoul introduces a candidate to Bishop Jenky during the Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion last spring. This year's ceremonies will take place Feb. 18 and Feb. 25. (The Catholic Post file/Jennifer Willems)

Bishop Daniel R. Jenky, CSC, will welcome nearly 300 children, women and men to St. Mary’s Cathedral in Peoria over the next two weekends as they begin the final period of preparation to be received into the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil.

The Rite of Election and Call to Continuing Conversion will be celebrated at 3:30 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 18, and Sunday, Feb. 25. As The Catholic Post was going to press, 60 parishes and Newman Centers had reported that they would be sending 103 catechumens and 179 candidates to the prayer services at the cathedral this year.

During the Rite of Election, Bishop Jenky will recognize the catechumens, those who have not been baptized, and declare them to be “the elect” of God. Candidates are those who have been baptized, either in the Catholic Church or another faith tradition, and are seeking to complete their Christian initiation by being confirmed and/or receiving the Eucharist. They will be called to continuing conversion.

The bishop will greet all of the catechumens and candidates personally. After the ritual he will continue his custom of returning to the sanctuary to pose for photos with them and the RCIA coordinators, priests, permanent deacons, godparents, sponsors and family members who accompany them.

Those who are not involved in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults are also welcome to come to the Rite of Election and add their prayerful support to their new brothers and sisters in faith.

The Easter Vigil will be celebrated at parishes around the Diocese of Peoria after sundown on Saturday, March 31.

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