After a long and intense preparation, the celebration of the Sacraments of Christian Initiation at the Easter Vigil comes as a great time of celebration for the whole community. This is followed by the period of Mystagogia. Havent we done work? Havent the neophytes experienced enough catechesis? Hasnt the scriptural, the instructional, the liturgical, the ecclesial catechesis in the previous months been enough? What are we meant to do during the period between Easter and Pentecost?
The rite asks us to continue to build on the catechesis given during the previous stages of the initiation journey. The emphasis during this period is on mystagogical catechesis. But what is mystagogical catechesis?
My reflection is based on two fundamental documents:
1) the Rite itself; 2) Pope Benedict XVIs Encyclical, Sacramentum caritatis
1) IN THE RITE
This is how the RCIA describes the period of Mystagogia:
The Emmaus story in Luke’s Gospel [Lk 24:13-35] directs our Christian faith with Christ as our guide, our eyes are opened to recognise Him; we then set out to share this Good News with our companions. This lived discipleship is the reality of Mystagogia. From the moment of The Rite of Acceptance the Church embraces the catechumens and candidates with parental affection;
“From this time on the Church embraces the catechumens as its own with a mother’s love and concern. Joined to the Church, the catechumens are now part of the household of Christ, since the Church nourishes them with