WASHINGTON (CNS) — This is the time of year parishes have been preparing to welcome new Catholics into the Church through the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults, but the coronavirus has changed how catechumens and candidates are participating in RCIA.

To prevent this pandemic from stopping these individuals from pursuing full entrance into the Church, the Catholic publisher TAN Books has released a free online version of the Credo RCIA program, which was developed in tandem with the Dominican friars at the Thomistic Institute, based at the Dominican House of Studies in Washington.

Access to the YouTube videos for each lesson and PDFs of both the catechist and catechumen materials are available online through TAN Books and the Thomistic Institute websites.

Credo is a video program that “carefully teaches participants and catechumens the key tenets of the faith,” said a news release announcing online access.

The Thomistic Institute is seen in Washington in this June 7, 2018 file photo. (Tyler Orsburn/CNS) See SYMPOSIUM-PHILOSOPHY-SCIENCE June 18, 2018.

It is designed to be all-encompassing, covering all topics recommended by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. It also can be used with other RCIA programs so leaders can easily pick up wherever their participants left off. Credo can be streamed from anywhere.

In RCIA, catechumens are those who have never been baptized, and they receive Baptism, Confirmation and first Communion at the Easter Vigil. Candidates who have already been baptized in another Christian tradition enter the Church through a profession of faith, being confirmed and receiving the Eucharist.

The Thomistic Institute, founded 10 years ago, “seeks to promote Catholic truth in the contemporary world by strengthening the intellectual formation of Christians, especially at top tier universities,” according to a news release.

The institute — thomisticinstitute.org — has over 50 student chapters, including at Harvard, Yale, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, New York University, Duke University and on campuses in Dublin, London and Rome.