After the homily, the rituals of the rite of election begin.
130. After the homily, the priest in charge of the catechumens’ initiation, or a deacon, a catechist, or a representative of the community, presents the candidates, using the following or other words:
Reverend Father, Easter is drawing near, and so these catechumens, whom I now present to you, are completing their period of preparation. They have found strength in God’s grace and support in our community’s prayer and example.
Now they ask that after the celebration of the scrutinies, they be allowed to participate in the sacraments of baptism, confirmation, and the eucharist.
The celebrant replies:
Those who are to be chosen in Christ, come forward, together with your godparents.
One by one, the candidates and godparents are called by name. Each candidate, accompanied by a godparent (or godparents), comes forward and stands before the celebrant.
[If there are a great many candidates, all are presented in groups, for example, each group by its own catechist. But in this case, the catechists should be advised to have a special celebration beforehand in which they call each candidate forward by name.]
The rite is ever practical, keeping the naming of candidates, their election, at the core of the transition experience from catechumen. The bracketed text indicates why most parishes opt for a rite of sending, so the advice of a “special celebration beforehand” can be followed.
Note the sample text of testimony. It does two things. It references God’s grace as the experience of completing preparation. It also speaks of the community’s faith witness. Some parishes do provide for a witnessing of individual catechumens, and this sample in the rite of election gives good direction. Testinony is not about, “N has mastered Catholic teaching, receiving an A in her tests.” or “N has shown an advanced degree of charity, volunteering for nine events in the past year and joining two committees.” The focus of the rite is on Jesus Christ. Authentic testimony on a person’s readiness should reflect that.