Q. 1. What does the word "mystagogy" mean in the Catholic Church?
A. 1. Originating from the Greek language, "mystagogy" means "learning about the mysteries". It is an initiation into God’s self revelation. It is a process of growing in the faith through prayer, learning and practicing with other believers.
Quoting the Stratford Caldecott, mystagogy is ‘the stage of exploratory catechesis that comes after apologetics, after evangelization, and after the sacraments of initiation (baptism, Eucharist, and confirmation) have been received’. This is sometimes referred to as a formal stage of education of the newly baptised Christian in living out the faith.
Pope Benedicts XVI’s encyclical Sacramentum Caritatis, Section 64, is entitled ‘Mystagogical Catechesis’. There it says, '‘The Church’s great liturgical tradition teaches us that fruitful participation in the liturgy requires that one be personally conformed to the mystery being celebrated, offering one’s life to God in unity with the sacrifice of Christ for the salvation of the whole world... The mature fruit of mystagogy is an awareness that one’s life is being progressively transformed by the holy mysteries being celebrated. The aim of all Christian education, moreover, is to train the believer in an adult faith that can make him a “new creation”, capable of bearing witness in his surroundings to the Christian hope that inspires him.’
As can be concluded by the above meaning of "mystagory," joining the Catholic Church is truly a lifetime commitment.