Yesterday, the pope quoted from the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults in his catechesis on Baptism. The text he used was from the signing of the senses in the Rite of Acceptance into the Order of Catechumens.
The cross is the badge that shows who we are: our speaking, thinking, looking, working is under the sign of the cross, that is under the sign of the love of Jesus to the end. The children are marked on the forehead. Adult catechumens are also marked on the senses, with these words: “Receive the sign of the cross on your ears to hear the voice of the Lord”; “On the eyes to see the splendor of the face of God”; “On the mouth, to answer the word of God”; “On the chest, because Christ dwells through faith in your hearts”; “On the shoulders, to support the gentle yoke of Christ” (Rite of the Christian initiation of adults, No. 85). Christians become the extent to which the cross is imprinted in us as an “Easter” mark (cf. Rev 14: 1, 22: 4), making visible, even outwardly, the Christian way of facing life.
It’s the first time I recall that a pope has quoted from the RCIA in order to make his point. It was a beautiful instance of the rite enriching our general appreciation of what is at stake in Baptism.
(NB For some unknown reason, this text does not appear in the English translation of Pope Francis’s remarks on the Vatican website; what I have above is found in the Italian version.)
Pope John Paul II was the first pope to celebrate the Rite of Acceptance. Fr. Ron Lewinski arranged it during his visit to Chicago (and he told me John Paul was very much impressed!). But I don’t recall John Paul quoting from the RCIA in other contexts. Of course, he wrote and spoke so much, I may have missed it.
Likewise, I don’t recall Pope Benedict ever making a point by using a text from the RCIA, though the general introduction appears in the footnotes of Sacramentum Caritatis (cf. paragraph 18 on the order of the sacraments).
Does anyone know of another instance?