Cursillo is a Spanish word which means a short course – that is, a short course of Christianity. Cursillo was created in Spain in 1945 by a group of young men who saw that church was poorly attended and reasoned that if the world were to become a better place then Christ HAD to be at the centre of people’s everyday lives – not just on Sundays. The same is true 70 years later, here in our diocese. The founders of Cursillo approached community leaders and invited them to come together for a Weekend of Spiritual Renewal, which did indeed have the effect of bringing them to a deeper commitment to Christ. And Cursillo was born!
A Cursillo weekend is where you invest some time in your personal relationship with Christ. The weekend begins on Thursday evening with prayer and ends on Sunday with a eucharist. In between are 15 talks based on the gospel, given by lay people and clergy. There is also time for prayer, meditation, reflection and small group discussions along with lots of singing, worship, food and fellowship. The talks begin with a question: What is YOUR ideal? They progress through the sacraments, your faith, and obstacles within your environment. By Sunday, through your self-examination, you should be well on your way to establishing your personal Rule of Life. On Sunday, when the 3 day weekend is over, the rest of your life begins. Then, you return to your environment with the tools you need to talk about your faith. You are encouraged to study and you are called to action with support from those Christians around you…you may already be involved with small-group ministry. As you talk about your daily walk, you have made yourself accountable to yourself as you live out your Rule of Life and you are living your Christian Ideals, encouraging others as you go.
Cursillo supports the Strategic Plan of our Diocese:
Priority #1: Creating an external focus on mission.
Priority #2: Vocational discernment and formation of clergy and lay people.
The Huron Vision Statement: “The Diocese of Huron: A people transformed in Christ by God’s Spirit” supported by scripture.
The Mission Statement: “Building up the body of Christ and preparing God’s people to live their Mission”
The Purpose of Cursillo: To help Christians discover new depths of faith and sacramental living, fostering disciplines of prayer, study, action, and mutual support.
The year 2015 will be marked as the new beginning of Cursillo in Huron! It has been received with enthusiastic support from the Diocese of Huron, as well as the Niagara Diocese and the Canadian Anglican Cursillo Secretariat. Working with a neighbouring Diocese to strengthen and share resources is new to us. In Matthew 14, Peter, with faith, responds to Christ’s invitation to step out of the boat they were in and into the turbulant sea. In faith, we are called out of “the boat” and into the unknown, trusting God.
There are some housekeeping issues to attend to as we create a new Huron and Niagara Secretariat as this has not been done before in Canada. The concept of working together, bringing strength to the Anglican community across diocesan borders is exciting and, once begun, may have a valuable impact in other geographical areas in Canada.
A Canadian Anglican Cursillo Secretariat meeting will be hosted in Hamilton this April 18 – 20th. Huron Diocese has been blessed to be included as a voting member of our newly formed Secretariat as we work towards making the changes necessary to allow cross-diocese organization. Please pray for safe travel and fruitful discussions.
The next weekend – May 26th-29th (Weekend #51) – will be the first weekend when clergy and team from both dioceses will work together to bring participants into a walk with Christ, using the Cursillo method. Please consider attending. For more information, please see www.anglicancursillo.com or email [email protected]
I ask you: If not now, When?
Marion Bailey serves on Dioceses of Niagara and Huron Anglican Cursillo Secretariat.