On Sunday, May 1, St. John’s University faith, Rite of
Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA) community celebrated
a sacred and meaningful moment in the lives of seven of our
students. During the 5:30 p.m. student mass, participants received
the Sacraments of Initiation: Baptism, Confirmation, and Eucharist.
Bishop Octavio Cisneros, Auxiliary Bishop of Brooklyn, presided for
the liturgy. RCIAs process of prayer, study, and reflection within
the Catholic faith and welcomes Catholics as well as non-Catholics,
who may not have received some of the sacraments as children.
The six students from the Queens campus include: Analee Campbell,
Gavin Davids, Jorge Hernandez, Cheryl Huo, Sheila Joseph, and Li
Luo. Brandon Julian is a student from the Staten Island Campus.
When asked about how the RCIA process influenced him, Jorge
“The RCIA program really allowed me to become a part of the
school and to become comfortable with the school. I learned about
many things that I would not have learned otherwise regarding my
faith and in doing so, I became closer to God. I would not have had
the most amazing first year at St. John's had it not been for RCIA
and my friends in this program.”
The RCIA process at St. John’s begins in September and continues
through Easter. Students gather each week to study the catechism,
the bible, sacraments, social justice teachings, the saints,
prayer, faith sharing and much more. Supported by our community of
faith, RCIA members begin to understand the importance of community
and relationships as they grow in their understanding of God.
“Witnessing this liturgy has become an inspirational moment every
year. It is simply amazing to watch these students come forward and
make this commitment of faith,” notes Trish Scalese, Director of
RCIA and Campus Ministry for Faith Formation and Liturgy. “In doing
so, it celebrates and renews the faith of everyone in attendance.
It is a wonderful reminder of the beauty of community and how
community reflects the generosity and love of God.”