Q: Are the Rites of Welcoming and Acceptance optional? We have a catechumen who travels every weekend for his job and it is hard to get this scheduled. He is faithful to meetings and has been coming for over 6 months. Wondered about both Rites.
A: The Rite of Welcoming is more optional than the Rite of Acceptance. The Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens establishes certain canonical privileges such as eligibility for marriage in the Catholic Church. The Rite of Welcoming was designed for validly baptized Christians who had little experience of the faith. Even then, it’s optional. But even Acceptance is optional in cases of an emergency baptism.
Normally, I skip the Rite of Welcoming, but do the Rite of Acceptance.
The Rite of Acceptance may be done on a weekday. It need not take place during mass – or even at church.