Cursillo Frequently Asked Questions: with Answers

Last Modified:
Maintained by:
Alan Jackson <ajackson at ajackson dot org>
  • The Cursillo Synthesis (Eduardo Bonin)
  • update DeColores, Inc information
  • add Decolores Ministries info
  • NEC Library information
  • NECC Response to Ecumenical Cursillo Issue
  • Add a few words on REC
  • Add Tres Dias info
  • Add United Methodist Cursillo
  • Mananitas Info
  • Emmaus and Chrysalis info
  • MUCH more on the origins and history
  • Add Awakening
  • Add another paraphenalia source
  • Santa Clara community pages
  • Information on Via de Cristo
  • ------

     1. Introduction
    - 1.1 What I'd like to add

    2. What are the various Cursillo-like renewal movements?
    - 2.1 Adult
    - - 2.1.01 Cursillo
    - - 2.1.02 Walk to Emmaus
    - - 2.1.03 Via De Cristo
    - - 2.1.04 Kairos
    - - 2.1.05 LIFE
    - - 2.1.06 Vocare
    - - 2.1.07 The Great Banquet
    - - 2.1.08 REC
    - - 2.1.09 Tres Dias
    - - 2.1.10 Heart of America Camino
    - - 2.1.11 Handicapped Encounter Christ
    - - 2.1.12 Cum Christo
    - - 2.1.13 Koinonia
    - - 2.1.14 Decolores Ministries
    - - 2.1.15 United Methodist Cursillo
    - - 2.1.16 Awakening
    - 2.2 Teenager
    - - 2.2.01 Chrysalis
    - - 2.2.02 Happening
    - - 2.2.03 TEC
    - - 2.2.04 Challenge
    - - 2.2.05 Celebration
    - - 2.2.06 Kairos
    - 2.3 Cross-reference glossary of terms

    3. How did Cursillo begin?
    - 3.1 Cursillo beginnings
    - 3.2 Other offshoots
    - 3.3 The Cursillo Synthesis

    4. Where did De Colores originate?

    5. What about before the weekend?
    - 5.1 What are sponsors and what are their responsibilities?
    - 5.2 For whom is a cursillo intended? (Choosing candidates)
    - 5.3 Are Cursillos ecumenical?

    6. What is the flow of the weekend, and how does it differ between the various movements?
    - 6.1 Roles of team, spiritual and lay directors, and others
    - 6.2 What about palanca - specific and general

    7. What about the fourth day?
    - 7.1 Ultreya
    - 7.2 Reunion
    - - 7.2.01 Electronic Reunion Groups

    8. Where can I find paraphernalia? (Bumper stickers, etc)

    9. References
    - 9.1 Print references
    - 9.2 URL's
    - 9.3 Organizational Contacts and governance

    - - 9.3.1 Episcopal Cursillo
    - - 9.3.2 British Anglican Cursillo
    - - 9.3.3 Kairos
    - - 9.3.4 Emmaus
    - - 9.3.5 Tres Dias
    - - 9.3.6 Roman Catholic Cursillo (USA)

    10. Other matters
    - 10.1 Meal Blessing and copyright
    - 10.2 Prayer to the Holy Spirit (and music)
    - 10.3 Laughing Jesus Picture and copyrights
    - 10.4 Music information

    1. Introduction

    This is collected from various sources, including: Please note that where the information seems sketchy, it is probably because I don't know. 90% of what is here came from posts made by the folks mentioned above, not from me. I am a redactor, not a researcher. Please, please send me additions and corrections.

    1.1 What I'd like to add

    2. What are the various Cursillo-like renewal movements?

    2.1 Adult

    2.1.01 Cursillo

    Cursillo is the original, and began in Mallorca, Spain in the Roman Catholic church. The cursillo of January 7, 1949 is usually considered to be the first. It was brought to the United States by Spanish airmen training in Texas in Corpus Christi. A few years after it took root in the US, it spread into the Episcopal Church, which licenses the name Cursillo and many materials from the Roman Catholic Church. The first English Cursillo in the United States was held at Our Lady of Guadelupe Monastery, a Benedictine Abbey just outside of Pecos, New Mexico. The first Cursillo in the US was in Spanish, and was held in Waco, Texas on May 25, 1957. The first Episcopal Cursillo was held in Dallas, Texas in 1972.

    2.1.02 Walk to Emmaus

    Emmaus - Methodist/non-denom. version of Catholic/Episcopalian Cursillo Walk to Emmaus: "The Walk to Emmaus is a 72-hour experience that is usually held at a retreat center. The weekend begins on Thursday evening and ends Sunday evening. At Emmaus, participants spend three busy, but enjoyable days as they live and study together in singing, prayer, worship, and discussion. Discussions center around fifteen talks that are given by laity and clergy. The talks examine how God's grace comes alive in the Christian community and expresses itself in the world. Participants discover how grace is real in their lives and how they can live in the life of grace and bring grace to others. As people have the opportunity to participate in the daily celebration of Holy Communion, they begin to understand more fully the presence of Christ in his body of believers. Participants experience God's grace through the prayers and acts of service of a support community." [from the Upper Room Web site, with permission]

    "In the late 1970s, The U"In the late 1970s, The Upper Room (a unit of the Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church) formed The Upper Room Cursillo in Nashville, Tennessee.  In 1981, by mutual agreement between the National Secretariat of the Roman Catholic Cursillo movement and The Upper Room, the name of the Nashville Protestant Community was changed to Emmaus. The Emmaus movement is Eccumenical."
     Copyright 1981 The Upper Room

    2.1.03 Via De Cristo

    The National Lutheran Secretariat (NLS) of Via de Cristo maintains a web site at that may provide additional information or a valuable link. The NLS is an affiliation of about 36 Via de Cristo communities all over the U.S., providing resources (pilgrim guides, rollo outlines, crosses, manuals, reunion cards, newsletter and other publications, etc.) and guidance. The movement is not directly associated with any specific Lutheran denomination (ELCA, LC-MS).

    Although the NLS maintains an "essentials" manual detailing what the weekend should consist of, individual communities are fairly autonomous when it comes to deciding exactly how to run the program in terms of team structure and training, talk outlines, traditions, events, schedules, etc. Most remain fairly faithful to the Catholic original, with the traditional Spanish terminology (rollo, palanca, etc.) in use.

    Via de Cristo started in 1972 in Florida and Illinois as Lutheran Cursillo, but the ecumenical communities changed to Via de Cristo in the mid-1980s when the Roman Catholic secretariat requested that communities that practice ecumenical weekends not use the Cursillo name. A few communities (Southern California, Arizona) continue to operate as Cursillos.

    2.1.04 Kairos

    This is a prison ministry. It is ecumenical, but is largely identical to a freeworld Cursillo - music, talks, palanca, food, etc.

    2.1.05 LIFE

    It is the Protestant Army Chaplaincy's adaptation in Europe of the Cursillo weekends.

    2.1.06 Vocare

    (weekend for young adults - mostly early to middle twenties) - This weekend is somewhat more contemplative than Cursillo or Happening weekends. The Pilgrims focus on determining their Christian calling (not necessarily ordained, and probably not a call to ordained ministry). The symbol I see used mostly at Vocare is the bee hive.

    Vocare is a renewal weekend for young adults (age 18-30ish). Vocare (vo-car-ee) is latin for 'vocation' and therefore the focus is learning what God is calling you to be. It looks at where God is in each person and in the work that they do (whether in the church or not) and the relationships to other people.

    2.1.07 The Great Banquet

    This is really not the equivalent of the Cursillo movement. It is more like the Walk to Emmaus. The Great Banquet was started in Madisonville, Ky by a pastor named Jack Pitzer. He had attended the Methodist Cursillo in the Upper Room and disagreed with some of the teachings. He had a problem with teaching one denominations ideals. He thought that something of this nature should be ecumenical, so he started The Great Banquet.

    2.1.08 REC

    Residents Encounter Christ. REC is a renewal weekend for prisoners with its roots in the Cursillo format.
    It was started by a group from both the Cursillo community and Walk to Emmaus community in Louisville KY.
    The REC's format is very similar to Kairos.

    2.1.09 Tres Dias

    Tres Dias - a movement in the Northeast which is ecumenical.  The address of the Editor of the Tres Dias International news is:
            Zel Walch
            TD Int'l News
            166 Highfield Lane
            Nutley, NJ 07110
            201 667-3276

    2.1.10 Heart of America Camino

    The Heart of America Camino was originally Heart of America Cursillo. In 1987, the Catholic Church informed us that because we basically encompassed the following denominations (Christian (Dis. of Christ), Methodist and Presbyterian) we need to change our name.

    We also had to change the following words:
    palanca was changed to cuna (wedge)
    cursillista to viajero
    ultreya to consuno

    The were the only changes that were made. We still follow the original script from the Iowa Episcopal that helped start our weekends. I say the script is the same because I am the "Keeper" of the script.

    The biggest discussion the community has is in the area of SD. The decision that a SD at a weekend can done everything that their denomination allows. The biggest issue is on the blessing of the elements at communion. Camino works very hard to keep the doctrine of anyone denomination from influencing the weekend.

    Coming a Christian (Dis. of Christ) church, I like the mix of denominations at a weekend. It seems to me to get back to how Jesus design the first church base on love and not egos.

    2.1.11 Handicapped Encounter Christ

    HEC (Handicapped Encounter Christ) started by John Keck. It is a Cursillo-like weekend with 50/50 able-bodied and disabled people. Both AB and disable give talks. ABs take care of diabled during weekend on a buddy system basis. Instead of Mananita there is a social on Sat. nite where people come in from outside and a skit is put on by weekend people and a raffle is done to raise funds since few diabled can afford the cost of the weekend. Many who have already made the Cursillo weekend say that the HEC with it's mixture of AB and disabled adds a real dimension that increases the sprirituality of the weekend. You actually practice Christianity on the weekend instead of the 4th day!

    I believe weekends are still being help in Pennnsylvania , New Orleans and New York and possibly other cities


    2.1.12 Cum Cristo

    In Columbus Ohio, the Cursillo has been alive for over 30 years, since the early 60's. It started with the purely Catholic version but evolved into an Ecumenical version in the late 60's. In the mid 80's the central Cursillo office gave us an ultimatium to become all Catholic or non-Cursillo. We chose to continue the ecumenical spirit and changed our name to Cum Cristo (latin for with Christ) with the support of our local bishop. The weekend format, talks, closing, 4th day, closing, etc. are all the same as a regular Cursillo. We rigorously enforce no intercommunion. There is a Catholic mass on Saturday evening and a non-Catholic service on Sunday morning. Catholics receive communion on Saturday evening and non-Catholics recieve a blessing from the priest. On Sunday morning the process is reversed: non Catholics recieve communion, Catholics recieve a blessing.
    Cum Christo website

    2.1.13 Koinonia

    There is a protestant branch of Cursillo which may just be Lutheran in Upstate NY and Southern Canada called Koinonia.

    2.1.14 Decolores Ministries

    The Inter-faith cursillo that is in Michigan is named simply " Decolores" It was started in Muskegon in 1980 as a spin off from the catholic cursillo the catholic churches in Muskegon were very helpful in getting this Inter-faith version going. The "weekends" are basically the same as the catholic except we have worship services instead of the mass and they are run entirely by laymen with two pastors as  spiritual directors for spiritual guidance (any demomination). We now have several thousand cursistas in Michigan with three main governing bodies one in Muskegon one in Grand Rapids and the Southwest michigan group       " Decolores Ministries of southwest michigan" in my  village of Cassopolis . Muskegon is on weekend number  170 ( approximately ) and we in the southwest   have numbers   37 mens and  38  womens due sometime this spring. Grand Rapids falls somewhere in between . As an Inter-Faith  group we use all different denomination  churches for our "weekends" and I have become very comfortable in many different churches. On one weekend we took count of all the denominations and there was
    17 represented. We cook all of our own food  and those candidates ( and team members ) who don't gain a few pounds are an exception. We have a trailer filled with cots and equipment and sleep right in the churches.we keep the cost down that way too with an average donation per candidate of 40 dollars. This donation is taken anonymously by placing a slotted coffee can on a table ( some donate some can't ) this to eliminate any pressure or embarassment . We have never been short of funds in fact the board will tithe any excess donations to worthy charities in the area.

    2.1.15 United Methodist Cursillo

    There are two UM Cursillo communities that I know of.  One in Louisiana (which I attended #35 in Sep 93.  We hold 6 co-ed weekends per year and are up to #50 to be held in March '96), and one in Mississippi.  I do not know of any others.  Mississippi started in the early 1970's and is still holding 10 weekends per year.  They were responsible for getting Louisiana started in '86.

    2.1.16 Awakening

    There is a retreat called AWAKENING. It started in Louisiana  and went to Southwest Missouri State University and another university in Texas. Since then, it has spread to different campus ministries in Missouri and Texas. This is a very similar experience as well with the palanca stuff.  It is put on by the catholic campus ministries, but in Missouri, we invite all denominations to go. (We have had many experiences of atheists and agnostics going and enjoying themselves, and becoming Christian too).   HOWEVER, a  major part of the weekend is that we NEVER mention the word palanca to anyone that has not gone. THerefore, when the "palanca" talk is given, then they get all of their letters all at once, the word is that much more sacred. Actually , absolutely NOTHING is said about the weekend before hand. Therefore, that much more risk is taken when going, that much more vulnerability is there, and then that much more of a feeling of being "taken care of " and loved happens. Our palanca "team" is a whole nother retreat right down the street that prays a lot, writes letters, and does their own growth activities...(we call them growth). The awakeners do not even know that there is another retreat until Sunday morning (the retreat goes from Friday to sunday). On sunday morning, the growth team comes in with candles while the awakeners are facing out of the circle,...the growth looks in everyone's eyes, then we do assigned prayer partners for every awakener, then whispers.

    2.2 Teenager

    2.2.01 Chrysalis

    Teenage offshoot of the Walk to Emmaus weekend, spiritual renewal is not really the basis of this weekend, rather more a lean toward evangelism to youth. Again, LOTS of talks given, but they differ greatly from the Emmaus talks.

    Chrysalis: "Chrysalis is an ecumenical ministry to motivate young people to become Christian leaders in their churches, schools, homes, and workplaces. It is the intention of the Chrysalis ministry to call each young person to seek a dynamic friendship with God through Christ and to grow toward the unique person he or she was created to be. During this three-day course in Christianity, teams of clergy, adult laity, and young people present 15 talks, offer testimonies, and participate in discussion groups and in a variety of fun activities. Participants are encouraged to follow up by becoming involved in "share groups," Bible studies, and Chrysalis reunion groups." [from the Upper Room Web site, with permission]

    Chrysalis is a wonderful renewal ministry. It is based off the Methodist Walk to Emmaus, which is based off the Catholic Cursillo. Chrysalis is the teen/Young adult version of Emmaus and it is centered around strenthening Christian decipleship in the youth of this world (which is definitely needed). It is non-denominational and focuses on ages 14-24. Some communities only have High School age Chrysali (for ages 14-18). Others have seen the need to have a walk designed around College age young adults (for ages 18-24). Some communities don't feel the need to have the Young Adult flights because The Walk to Emmaus can be attended by anyone who can attend the Young Adult Chrysalis.

    The weekend is called a flight because a chrysalis is the metamorphic stage between a caterpillar and a butterfly, which you become upon the completion of your third day.

    2.2.02 Happening

    Episcopal teenage "equivalent" to Cursillo, but different. Fewer talks, but still a strong emphasis on love and servanthood. Happening is a renewal weekend for high schoolers. It focuses on the teen's relationship with their peers, family, and God. A weekend for teens, run by teens (in the best setups)

    2.2.03 TEC

    which stands for Teens Encounter Christ, under the auspices of Protestant Army Chaplaincy's

    2.2.04 Challenge

    Challenge is a Cursillo-based movement for youth ages 16-25, and following it, members live out their Third Day (our weekends are shorter).

    1. Denominational sponsorship - I know of the Anglican groups (currently in Ottawa, formerly in Montreal, and just starting up in Algoma and Ontario dioceses). I seem to recall that there was/in a Roman Catholic Challenge group in Ottawa, though I know none of the details.
    2. History/age - Challenge actually pre-dates Cursillo in the Diocese of Ottawa (by a few months). We held our first weekend in '80 (Anglican Cursillo began here in '81).
    3. Ecumenical - Challenge is officially sponsored by the diocese. It is intended as a program for Anglicans (in our case), though there is members of other denominations have been on weekends and active in the movement afterwards.
    4. Coed/single-sex/age group - Challenge is co-ed, and is for young people ages 16-25.
    5. Differences from Cursillo - Since I haven't personally attended a Cursillo (most places with Challenge bump up the minimum age for Cursillo to about 23, so that they aren't competing for the same bodies), this only will be from what I know from the list, and from my parents. The weekend is shorter than a Cursillo weekend (rather than Thursday night - Sunday afternoon, ours run Friday night - Sunday afternoon). The talks are slightly different, and are in some cases aimed more directly at the age group. Other than that, the main differences are in terminology.

    6. Terminology -
    palanca                  - palanca
    mananita                 - mananita
    closing                  - the "invasion of the community" at the end of
                                 the weekend
    3rd Day                  - 4th Day (due to diff. length of weekends)
    ultreya                  - gathering of Challengers for worship, etc.
    group reunion            - group reunion
    talks                    - rollos
    co-directors             - 2 people who are "in charge", so to speak,
                                 of the weekend (I think Cursillo calls them
                                 Rectoras?)--usu. 1 male, 1 female
    Maranatha!               - trans.: Come, Lord Jesus; used in the same way
                                 as "De Colores"
    Easy Come, Easy Go       - a song which has traditionally been used in 
                                 Challenge weekends much as the song "De
                                 Colores" is in Cursillo [but not in our
                                 songbook because of difficulty in finding
                                 copyright status]

    2.2.05 Celebration

    A movement in the Presbyterian Church (USA) called Celebration. The program is modeled after the HAPPENING weekend in the Episcopal church. (although Celebration is somewhat different). The movement started in Charleston, SC and has spread throughout South Carolina, Oklahoma, and Georgia.

    2.2.06 Kairos

    The Roman Catholic youth renewal movement (similar to Happening or Chrysalis) is called Kairos. Not to be confused with the ecumenical adult prison ministry of the same name.

    2.3 Cross-reference glossary of terms

    Love. Especially, Christian love.
    Agape Meal (Via De Cristo):
    On Saturday evening (the day of the Easter service) Rainbow had an agape feast in celebration of our Lord's ressurection. The dinner table is formed in the shape of a cross (where possible), festively decorated, and dinner is enjoyed to candlelight. During dessert, the community enters (usually 50-70 people) and "serenade" the pilgrims and team. Niagra Falls is almost guaranteed.
    a closing. On Sunday evening the witness and support of the veteran cursillistas at the close of the three days.
    Cross Ceremony (Via De Cristo):
    right before closing the pilgrims and team gather in chapel. The Weekend Leader calls out the names of the new pilgrims, who come forward. A cross is placed around their neck by one of the Pastors with the words "Christ is Counting on You" to which the new pilgrim responds "And I am counting on Him". Lots of hugs follow. Nice, moving conclusion of the weekend experience right before the actual Closing.
    a short course of lectures.
    Cursillo de Christianidad:
    Full title of the movement, meaning a short course of lectures in Christian living. Cursillos de Christianidad does indeed mean a short course in Christian living, but it doesn't refer to a course of instruction (lectures). Rather, it means a short running course (such as St. Paul's admonition to run the good race). It is something to experience, not just to understand intellectually, which is implied in thinking of a course of instruction. Further, the talks or rollos should never be prepared as lectures, but as a sharing of life experience by those who are using the Cursillo method.
    A person who has taken a short course of study, or made the three days.
    De Colores:
    of colors. The life of grace has many colors. De Colores - it means the many colors which represent all of these weekends. They are so colorful, it really makes you happy.
    careful attention. The small group of cursillistas at the three days which is formed for discussions and summaries.
    Dying Moments:
    Our Emmaus community just changed to this name, which I think is widely used in Cursillo, from calling it the service of confession and healing. We do it on Saturday afternoon.
    Grace Mat:
    an 8.5"x17" piece of white paper that has been decorated usually with Bible Verses, or special sayings like "De Colores" and pictures perhaps from coloring books or magazine cut-outs or comic strips or just anything that can have a funny or serious message and they are used as place mats at each meal for each participant. People pray over them so that certain verses will apply to the people who get each grace mat. There are also special grace mats that are made for each participant that utilizes some special word...mine was LEADER..and is different for each participant--but this is done by the palanca people at that weekend. The other grace mats are general and can be done by anyone!
    A popular song sung early in the morning to celebrate a saint's day, birthday, etc.
    According to Bonnin, the original Cursillo weekend did not have Las Mananitas. In 1966 (or 1967), Bonnin was invited to talk to a weekend at Mexico and he was supprised with Las Mananitas on Sunday morning.  However, he liked the idea and brought back to Spain, but Cursillistas at Spain rejected it.  Few years later, Las Mananitas was accepted and was part of the weekend in Spain. He said OK to have Las Mananitas, but remember that it not the authentic of three days.
    Lever or Wedge, used for carrying a load, influence. The prayer and sacrifice which is offered to God in petition for grace. The lever allows a person to move something beyond his/her strength, as prayer and sacrifice allow an apostle to accomplish more than he/she would be capable of otherwise.



    Palanca is that which can be used to move something large and immobile. On our team, the Spiritual director handed out small wedges on strings for us to wear, to remind us that "palanca" is a wedge, a means to create change and movement.

    a talk that is heavily anecdotal and experiential.
    one who gives a rollo, called speakers, professors, instructors.
    Fourth Day:
    Well, that's every single day after your walk, whether Emmaus, Cursillo, Chrysalis, Via De Cristo, whichever.
    something beyond. The monthly meeting linking all cursillistas in an area that is the visible Christian community of the Cursillo. Also used as an exclamation, as at the end of a fourth day talk, "Ultreya!", or "Onward!" Often called a Gathering in the Emmaus movement. At least regionally (there is some difference of opinion here) Chrysalis community uses the phrase, "Fly With Christ" as their motto, much like the De Colores and Ultreya that the other communities use. The Challenge movement uses "Maranatha!" (which in English means "Come, Lord Jesus") as their greeting (used in the same was as "De Colores" is used).
    Some movements have tried to "demystify" the movement by changing some of the Spanish terms to words that are more familiar to English speakers. In addition, the Roman Catholic Cursillo has changed the names of some of talks, as explained below.

    The change in Piety, Study, Action, is only for the RC Movement. The terms were changed to "Holiness, Formation and Evangelization" in order to fit in with the terminology used by the Catholic Church. In this case with particular regard to a Vatican II document named "Evangelization in the Modern World" The RC Cursillo is a movement of the church and as such always strives to stay as closely in step with its teachings and language as possible.
    Rector = Weekend Leader
    Spiritual Director = Pastor
    Rollo = Talk
    Rollo Room = Talk Room
    Habitual Grace = Grace
    Actual Grace = Grace, Too!
    Cursillista = Pilgrim
    Team Member = Pilgrim
    Clausura = Closing
    Decuria = Poster Presentation
    Cha cha = Gopher
    Professor = Table Leader
    Reunion Group = small group, sharing group, prayer group, etc.

    3. How did Cursillo begin?

    The History Of The Cursillo Movement (Extracted from Canadian Conference of Catholic Cursillos {CCCC} Bulletin 17).  Written by Fr.  Gaston Rioux, O.M.I., the Spiritual Director of the CCCC, after a pilgrimage to Mallorca with founder, Eduardo Bonnin.


    Changing the heart of human beings is something that only God can achieve.  This is the great miracle of His kindness.  In the time after Christ, God brought this about by using human messengers.

    By weaving a network of love relationships, all opposition caused by selfishness, pleasure and power is overcome.  In specific areas of Church history, God used new apostles to change the course of History according to His own plan of love.  More than fifty years ago, Jesus Christ gave the gift of Cursillo to the lay people of His Church.  Why to lay people? Because they are at the heart of the world as God's leaven.


    What happened then? I would like to review briefly the history of the beginnings of Cursillo.  The power of this gift has affected millions of people on earth and still does it in spite of our weakness and human limitations.

    Cursillo did not come to the Church as a spontaneous creation.  It was rooted in the human soil of Spain.  We can trace it back to the call of Pius XI.  He wrote an encyclical, in 1922, called Ubi Arcano in which he was inviting the laity to become true leaven of Christ in the human dough in order to counteract all anticlerical and Anti-Christian influences of the world of the `20s and `30s.  This is how Catholic Action was born.  In Spain, the most active wing of Catholic Action was the young men.  A great Convention took place in December 1932.

    At this gathering, it was decided to try' to stimulate the Christian faith in young people through a great pilgrimage to the Shrine of Saint James in Compostella, an important place of prayer and Christian renewal since the Middle Ages.  It was to be a true experience and affirmation of faith in the face of militant atheism and non-belief on the part of those in public office.  This pilgrimage was to take place on July 25th 1937, a feast day of Saint James.


    Spain, in the early 30's had an anticlerical and an Anti- Christian government.  Very militant, this government was encouraging the youth to be aggressive and atheistic in education and in family life.  The Church was subtly attacked.  The Young Men's Catholic Action wanted to show the whole Spanish world that faith was still alive and could be influential in daily life.  They decided that a great pilgrimage to Compostella would be a visible way to oppose anti-Christian forces and consolidate and channel the Christian energy of the young people.

    Confrontation of the two camps in Spain lead to the civil war of 1936-1939 in which more than 500,000 people died.  Today Christians honour thousands of  martyrs who died for their faith.  After  the civil war, dechristianisation was everywhere.  It deprived the Church of a great number of her faithful.  The situation underlined a blatant religious ignorance, a superficial Christian life too often bogged down into ritualism and external appearances.  However, Christian charity governed some convinced Christians.  In 1941, this deplorable situation touched the hearts of many young men who remained faithful to Christ and His message.  They decided to work at transforming this society without Christ into one that was centred on Him.  They relinked with the ideal of the Young Men's Catholic Action.  They asked themselves the question: "What should we do to become a leaven and to form Christians into instruments of the Gospel in the world today.

    After reflection and prayer, they revived the idea of ten years previously, that of the pilgrimage of the young people to Compostella.  They wished it to be an event of knowledge of faith, a deepening of the demands of faith and of a real commitment to Christ.  This was to be an opportunity to share, to pray and to make gestures of brotherly love.  To obtain good results, it was decided to prepare it through short courses (Cursillos) given for diocesan leaders of the pilgrimage and to group leaders.  These Cursillos were in three parts: the first dealt with the knowledge of faith, i.e.  grace, faith obstacles to grace, sacraments and life in grace; the second addressed the nature, leadership and the aspects of Catholic Action; and the third tackled all the things about the pilgrimage and its organisation.  These Cursillos took place everywhere in Spain for many years.  They lasted a full week.  The pilgrimage took place, after many postponements, in July 1948.  It gathered 70,000 young people from all of Spain and all of the south American countries.  It was a success.


    Of all the experiences during the preparation of the pilgrimage, one place took it with more seriousness with an "all out" attitude towards the "Cursillos": the island of Mallorca.  Mallorca is one of the Baleares Islands.  This island is a little bit out of the Spanish mainstream.  Throughout its history it was independent, occupied for four centuries by Moslem Arabs of North Africa, re-conquered by the Spaniards, then by the French to become an independent kingdom with its own language, the Majorquin, half Catalan and half French.  Mallorca, first Christian and then Muslim by invasion reverted to Christianity.  Many statues of the Blessed Mother buried during the Muslim invasion were rediscovered four hundred years later and became very venerated on the island.

    Around 1850, Mallorca experienced a great expansion of religious fervour due to the activities of the many saints, both men and women.  Its faith deepened and took root through the light manifested in numerous charitable institutions.  This very alive faith was sustained in Mallorca even during the `30s in spite of the great pressures from the government to introduce atheism everywhere, especially in the education system.  The civil war touched mainly continental Spain.

    The arrival of Catholic Action on the island mainly among the young people was an instrument which brought about change and improvement in their midst.  They enthusiastically entered into the project of the big pilgrimage to Compostella.  Five "Cursillos" were made in the context of Catholic Action at the Shrine of Our Lady of Lluc.  There was a sense of excitement in preparing the pilgrimage.  Their enthusiasm and the depth of their faith made them a numerous group radiating their convictions on the march to Compostella.


    In Holy Week of 1943, a "cursillo" took place in Lluc.  Eduardo Bonnin was a participant.  Under the pressure of Jose Ferragut, an architect and one of his friends, he agreed to go.  Eduardo came from a very Christian family of ten children.  His father, an almond exporter, was afraid of the non-Christian influence prevalent even in the "so-called" catholic schools.  His children received a good Christian education from a Christian tutor, closely supervised by him.  Eduardo was, therefore, well protected from negative influences and anti-Christian education.  His faith was deepened in a favourable environment.  This gave to his family a priest and a Carmelite nun.  In his teens, he began his compulsory military service which lasted for nine years.

    During one of his holidays from the service he made his "cursillo".  His experience in the army lead him to discover that the heart of man is good and that love is its motor: love given and love received and accepted.  He discovered also the value of friendship and its beauty through life in the military quarters.  This marked him for the rest of his life.  He discovered also that faith helps us to be more human and happier.  The human search is unsatisfied without God.  Therefore he came to Lluc with his Christian journey already begun.

    The enthusiasm, the simplicity of the Christian message in all its fundamental elements such as the motivation to be leaven, the joy of sharing and depth of prayer opened his eyes and his heart to much more.  The idea of pilgrimage lead him to go beyond the pilgrimage to Compostella to embrace the concept of the pilgrimage to the Father to which we are all invited.  In his reflection, he wished that the "Cursillos" be opened to all.  That it be centred on the basics of faith but with all the enthusiasm and the joy of being a disciple of Jesus Christ.  He thought that a full week for a cursillo was impossible to most people.  He suggested a three-day week-end instead.  In his "cursillo" and in the days that followed, he deepened an idea in his heart to have a better world.

    Environments moulds the intelligence, the heart and the life of a person.  Each person has the right to be happy according to God's gift.  To allow each person the opportunity to achieve his or her human and divine perfection, we have to restore the environments according to God's will.  Eduardo presented the result of his thinking to a Catholic Action Leaders' School in Palma de Mallorca on December 8th, 1943.  His talk was accepted as an integral part of the Catholic Action `"Cursillos" for young people.  In the history of the "Cursillos in Christianity", this was the first rollo written of our actual Cursillo presentations.


    Eduardo Bonnin is an articulated thinker, an apostle restless about a world without God, about unhappy people and Christians without joy.  He is a Christian leader willing to conquer the world for Christ starting with himself.

    In the Young Men's Catholic Action of Mallorca he was in contact and in friendship with many other Christians like himself. Eduardo loved to meet other young people to reflect, to pray and to plan a way to make a more Christian world.  He was convinced that the ignorance about faith was the source of a godless world.  He invited six others to join him.  Together they started a systematic study of the Gospels with assignments, under the supervision of Fr. Gabriel Segui, M.S.C.  He corrected their homework every week.  They felt that it was important to know Christ and His message better before speaking about Christ to others.  The situation in the world and in the Church was worrying them.  They decided to pray together by going to mass early in the morning.  Moreover, knowing their environment was a key topic for their study, every' Sunday, the seven founders cycled to a quiet place and under the leadership of Eduardo, each one would go and sit under a tree and read a chapter from a book, either from a theologian or a sociologist.  Their authors were the most leading Christian thinkers of their time.  After a period of study, they would all come to share together their discoveries.  An apostolic action has to be well grounded to be efficient.  Here are their favourite authors: Romano Guardini, Jacques Leclerc, Eves Cougar, Pierre Charles, Michele Federico Sciacca, Card, Suhbard, etc...  To these they added philosophers, psychologists and sociologists.  When one wants to do a good job, one must study well.  Concurrently, the seven were involved in their faith in the name of Christ and in their own environments.

    In searching for a solution to remedy the ignorance of faith, the superficiality of ritualism and the apathy of non faith commitment in daily life, they decided to make their own form of Cursillo".  At the beginning they did not look for a name but for a real format for this weekend.  The first rollo was already done: the study of environment.  To permeate environments and make them Christian, they started to reflect on other topics to be developed so that a good in-depth survey of the truths of faith would be well covered, in order to bring true growth in faith and effective commitment to Christ.  All rollos as we know them, in the same order, were presented on the first Cursillo.  The weekend was lived in a little chalet near the Mediterranean Sea at a place called Cala Figuera de Santanyi, from August 19- 22, 1944.  There were 14 candidates.  All the priests' rollos were the same ones Eduardo heard on his "cursillo" in Catholic Action.  The success was tremendous.  Eduardo and his friends co- ordinated and directed the weekend.  The priest came for the spiritual rollos, mass and confessions and did not stay on the premises.  The "retreat" part of Thursday night to Friday morning was added a few years later under the influence of Fr. Juan Capo.  In the beginning all new Cursillistas were integrated right away into permanent group reunions to accelerate their permanent conversion and their spiritual growth.

    Before the first numbered official Cursillo of January 7-10 1949, there had been five other Cursillos.

    Cursillo, in its beginnings, was targeting those far away from God and the Church.

    The seven founders, in looking around, noticed that all the practising Catholics were well taken care of spiritually.  In their apostolic zeal, They saw that nobody cared about the faraway.  So they decided that they would reach out to bring them to God.  In their reflections on the person and the best means to reach them, they discovered that friendship i.e. unconditional love for the other, was the way to the heart and to conversion.  "Make a friend, be a friend, and bring our friend to Christ" is the strategy they followed.

    In January 1949, Bishop Juan Hervas, bishop of Palma de Mallowa decided to open Cursillo to more people outside Catholic Action.  This first year, thirty Cursillos were held.  This avalanche created a problem.  The new Cursillistas were too numerous to be integrated into permanent groups, so Eduardo invented the Ultreya.  Ultreya is the place to accelerate the conversion started during the three days, where one receives the love that maintains the growth effort and also stimulates apostolic commitment.  The Ultreya is a happy place, filled with joy, enthusiasm and where each is at the service of the other and at the service of the world in evangelization.  Ultreya is also the place where one makes friends and finds a permanent group reunion.


    The history of the beginnings of Cursillo is a sacred history.  We read with amazement the vitality and the growth of Christianity as told in the Acts of the Apostles.  Cursillo is a modern version of the Acts.  In their study and prayer for finding a way to make a difference in the world of their day, the founders were looking for a way to change the world.  They found it in the Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles.  In studying their society and the one of the first Christians they were surprised to find so many similarities.  They said to themselves "If the first Christians succeeded in changing the pagan world in which they lived, we can change ours using the same means.  Let us go back to charity between us and recapture the same enthusiasm in the service of Christ."  Jesus said "Love one another as I have loved you" John 15, 12.  This worked so well that the pagans themselves saw it and said: "See, how they love one another".  The Acts detail all they did, it is up to us to do likewise".

    Cursillo is the experience of the first Christians for the world of today.  To recapture for ourselves the gift of God (the charism) for His Church is the way for the Cursillo Movement to renew itself; to revitalise and to become more efficient in today's world.  All the power of God is attached to His gift.  To stay away from it would be to deprive the Movement of the power of the gift of the beginnings.

    Glory to You, 0 Lord, for the gift of Cursillo and for your special messengers called our founders!.  Fr. Gaston Rioux, O.M.I.

    3.1 Cursillo beginnings

    A friend in Denver sent me a clipping from the Denver Post (by Virginia Culver) reporting on a visit by Eduardo Bonnin, one of the original founders of Cursillo.

    I won't quote the entire article, but some quotes of Eduardo Bonnin (who is now 78 and retired from his occupation as an almond-exporter in Spain) I thought were interesting:

    B said he got the idea of Cursillo in 1949 from the Holy Spirit because "people had a negative mentality after the war".

    The weekends are not designed "to tell people to love God, but to tell the people God loves them. That is the heart of the message".

    The development of friendships is at the core of the method: "Nothing fills the heart like a friendship".

    Bonnin said everyone needs to know himself, which a person can accomplish with a Cursillo weekend, and to know others and reach out to them. 'If you only know Jesus, you are mystic.  That's not good. If you only know yourself and not God you just work, work, work".

    On the accretions that have grown up over the years, Bonnin had some simple advice: "Cursillo is like a tree; it needs to be seen. If you put too much on it no one can see the message. It's the same with a Christmas tree. If it is too decorated, no one sees the tree and children think the tree grows ornaments".

    The article concludes with Bonnin's observation that the work of the Holy Spirit is unstoppable. "And when the Holy Spirit talks to you, shut up and listen".

    William L. Carey
    Richmond Daybreak #2

    P.S. The articles estimates that 5 million people have "made" Cursillo since its inception in 1949.

    3.2 Other offshoots

    3.3 The Cursillo Synthesis (Eduardo Bonnin)



    O.- In Cursillos, from the very first moment we wanted to find the best possible method to help man move from where he is --from his present state-- to where he could be--, to his fullest possibilities.

    1.- Our initial convictión was, and still is, that the Cursillo should be a simple method which hits on the key of the process of identification of each person with the Gospel.

    2.- So that the joy of the Good News may be easily accessible to men and women, we think that all they need is to become aware that their search for happiness, friendship and love, begins with the meeting with themselves,
    which encourages and leads them towards meeting Christ and others; that is why conversion is a meeting rather than a change.

    3.- During the three days of the Cursillo we attempt to crystallize this search in a triple meeting (or reunion): The meeting of the person with themselves, with Christ and with others; and with the Grace of God we almost
    always manage to do so.

    4.- There is no doubt that methodologically the key to make possible the three processes of friendship, is precisely the last one --friendship with others--, and, included in this, friendship with these others who make up our own process of conversion, that is to say friendship with the brethren.

    5.- This longing for developing both our own identity and formation, is greatly helped by any relation of friendship, provided it is a true friendship: which neither of the friends have minimized or utilized.

    6.- One of our main purposes is affording chances of friendship. Those who have started the process of their conversion through Cursillos, can participate of this adventure with others, with those who have found the same sense of life they have found.

    7.- And when chances of friendship are afforded, we are aware that two basic types of friendship emerge: bilateral friendship and group friendship. At the Ultreya we definitely favour group friendship, though we know that within those groups of true friends -- usually between three and six people--, there will be those who, in pairs, will have more in common, which we think is positive, because in these cases, with the dual relationship framed in the group relationship, we get all the advantages of both types of communication and we overcome their respective risks.

    8.- Features of the Group.

    a.- Plurality

    The Ultreya is a springboard for the creation of groups, and a guarantee of wholesomeness, of openness and vitality of groups which have already been formed.

    b.- Cost free status.

    In Cursillos the group does not gather its members in order to ..., but because... It aims only, and nothing less, that the friends who make up the group relive together -every week-, what each of them lives separately in their respective environments. We do not wish to live together but to share what is being lived. What we seek is a friendly  conjunction of sundry aspects of Reality.

    c.- Respect.

    The respect that everyone in the group deserves, leaves any personal disqualification out of place. What really is in tune with Cursillos' methodology is to fuse one's experiences with the experiences of others, and what one has planned to do with what the other members have planned to do, but not to use one's experiences against what another knows or against something planned by someone outside the group.

    d.- Stability.

    So that the group -- and therefore the Group Reunions--, which are the basis of the Cursillos Movement, maintain this inner climate and thus trully help the process of conversion of everyone, we consider it essential that they
    keep their insertion within a genuine Ultreya and that they look after their own stability.

    e.- Freedom.

    What is essential is to make the conversion process of the converse, or "newly converted", an easy, conscious and growing one; under these circumstances he will have the good taste to adapt his mind and his will to the best.

    9.- So that the groups of cursillistas do not turn to individualism or into a group under the command of someone who manages or manipulates it, from either inside or outside, or that the group turns into a mere well-meaning social gathering, it is essential to have the universality and diversity that the Ultreya provides. The Ultreya is the gathering of the Group Reunions. And all the groups and their members stream into it for the same reason that they go to the Group Reunions: to share what everybody and every group lives. They do not go there to acquire knowledge, nor to get instructions.

    10.- To avoid this vital and essential character of the Ultreyas turning into mere fireworks, into a show rather than an abode, it is essential that it be supported and strengthened by a school or Group of Leaders. The most important thing to bear in mind is that the first and essential role of the School for Leaders is to support the Ultreyas in their area. And after, in a quite secondary way, to train people who will eventually go to a Cursillo as a Leader, or to organize the Administrative Section, or organise the spiritual service -prayers-, that every Cursillo demands.

    11.- The Method of Cursillos adheres to a psychotherapy of the conversion, understanding conversion not as an action but as a process, and it has not been designed as a method for manipulating people, but quite on the contrary, as a systematic exteriorization of the inner person, lived from the inside towards the outside in every contemporary, truly evangelic and evangelizing process that we know of.

    12.- When we affirm that the cursillista has to focus his/her evangelizing activities within his environments, we mean that - except in very special and unusual cases-, the person who has started or has reafirmed his process of conversion in a cursillo, is called on to focus his evangelizing influence in the same fields of activity and in the circles of friendship or everyday life which he had before attending the cursillo: his family, his work, his clubs or leisure groups or his after work activities etc.When we speak about environmental activity as being characteristic of the cursillista, we mean that the essential activity - and often the only one -, which we encourage is a lay one, not an intraecclesiastical one. We do not even wish him to give an overgenerous dedication to the Cursillos Movement itself, that could hinder him from his main activity, that is to influence through friendship all the lay environments that he comes from; in this sense we are very glad to have detected, almost from the very first. It is essential to grasp the difference between an environment and a structure, but it is not always understood, and many people wish that through Cursillos those who hold the power in human structures, be it by means of influence such as the bosses or the elite, could become converted, instead of wishing for the conversion of those who actually have the greater number of friendship relations, who may or may not be bosses or the elite, but generally are not. Because, going deeply into this mirage of the cheerleading of environments, we would come to one of four panoramas that
    are, so we believe, the antipode of an environment truly fermentated and vertebrated in a christian way.

    - Either we would create a true collective alienation.

    - Or else, secondly, we would cause a sublimation of the reality, which is the antithesis of lay life.

    - or we could even tend to create a society which is merely for "show".

    - Or, lastly but definitely not least, we would stop worrying whether this external behaviour was even the least bit sincere or felt.

    We do not have recipes to change History, but we have the necessary conviction, desire and steadfastness, from the process of our converging conversion, to change the path of History into friendship.

    4. Where did De Colores originate?

    Well De Colores came about when a bus load of people in Spain broke down, and these people had to walk something like 20 miles. De Colores was a Spanish folk song long before the beginning of the Cursillo movement. When the bus broke down, everyone sang to pass the time and this was one of the songs that they sang over and over. Thus it bacame associated with the movement by accident.
    Why do we use the term DeColores (I know this means "of color" or something similar in Spanish) with all the colors of the rainbow? Someone said they thought it was because the colors represent the many facets of God's love. Is that correct? What does the rooster signify?
    Traditionally (all the way back to the 13th century), the rooster symbolizes Christ's resurrection by rising early in the morning. De Colores is from the Spanish song of the same name that speaks (in about 90+ verses) of the "many colors of God's love". When I was an English major in college, we read several Middle English songs/poems that used both the rainbow (some with reference to Noah) and the rooster as images.

    There are roosters carved into the stonework of several medieval cathedrals in Europe.

    First of all, De Colores is a Mexican folk song. To use De Colores as a greeting is a little like coming up to a person and saying 'Jimmy Crack Corn!' In the United States, (and only in the U.S., I believe), De Colores has become a recognition sign. It is certainly not used in Majorca where Cursillo originated.

    [Incidentally, De Colores has been recorded by both Joan Baez and Pete Seeger -- it is the theme song of the United Farm Workers, which caused great problems in some movements in California where many of those who showed up at Clausuras, etc. were farm workers, singing De Colores, and the new Cursillistas were owners, who were not at all pleased at hearing that song on their Weekend.]

    While De Colores is a folk song, there is only one verse (usually NOT sung in my experience, interestingly enough) that specifically deals with Christian vocation. The rest of the verses really celebrate diversity, and for that it is good. (I realize in the foregoing that I'm referring to the Spanish words. In some movements, an English version is used, and they may have more verses dealing with Christian living).

    A more appropriate greeting among Cursillistas (and I include ALL of the movements) is 'ultreya'. Ultreya is a medieval Spanish word (with no modern equivalent) that is roughly translated 'onward', or 'keep going'. It is a word of encouragement for all of us in our Christian vocation and ministry.

    The other symbols, such as the crowing rooster, celebrate life, specifically Christian life. Many large bookstores, especially Roman Catholic stores have Cursillo items for sale.


    5. What about before the weekend?

    5.1 What are sponsors and what are their responsibilities?

    Candidates to a weekend have sponsors.

    It is the responsibility of the sponsors (with the support of the community at large) to:

  • prepare the candidates for being open and accepting on the weekend by answering questions openly and honestly and not seeming to be furtive or secretive.
  • remove impediments to the attendance of the weekend. This may include driving the candidates to and from the retreat site, arranging babysitting for the weekend, arranging house-sitting if needed, etc. This is all a form of Sponsor palanca.
  • help the candidate overcome fourth day inertia. It is the sponsor's clear and unavoidable *duty* to make certain the candidate is invited to join a reunion group after the conclusion of the weekend.
  • 5.2 For whom is a cursillo intended? (Choosing candidates)

    The weekends are designed for committed Christians who earnestly desire to grow in Christ. If that describes you, you will probably have a wonderful time, and grow in wonderful ways you did not think possible.

    People who are actually or potentially leaders, people with a dissatisfaction with the way things are, people who have an aptitude for living in and for community.

    Who should not go on a weekend?

    The weekends are not a panacea, and they are not for everyone. I've never been on a weekend (I've been on five so far) in which someone did not come to Christ for the first time--yet that is not the focus for the weekend. Inevitably, there are a few there who do not realize until they actually encounter the love of God shining on the weekend that they are strangers to that love, but those who do not claim to be committed Christians should not attend.

    The weekends are also not for those who are not willing to grow, as the weekend is about more than love. It is a short course in Christianity, designed to help Christians to be renewed in God's love and grace. Grace is about accepting us where we are, but we are never left there. If a person really does not want to grow in Christ, they should not attend a weekend.

    Cursillo is not intended to fix people. People with severe chronic or current problems (depression, loss, addictions, etc) are not good candidates. Cursillo is intended to help raise up evangelical leaders in the church, not to heal those who are broken. There are ample programs designed for healing that should be pursued with those in need.

    5.3 Are Cursillos ecumenical?

    The short answer is that Emmaus, and perhaps some of the other weekends are, but Roman Catholic and Episcopal weekends are not. Details below.

    (Kip) As a member of the Diocese of Texas Secretariat, I have done some research on whether one needs to be an Episcopalian. First of all, yes, one DOES need to be an Episcopalian to attend Cursillo. This is part of our contract with the Catholic Church. Second, according to the canons, an Episcopalian is described as a person who is active and in good standing, regularly attending a specific church, and regularly receiving communion. An Episcopalian does NOT need to be a "card-carrying" member. That is only necessary if the person wants to either vote or hold office in the church. Third, I do know that anyone can attend an Emmaus walk, no matter what the denomination. A person must be Roman Catholic to go on a Catholic Cursillo. I do not know about the sponsorship guidelines. I do not know about the other programs. I do recommend you contact the National Episcopal Cursillo office in Washington, DC, and order a copy of the Cursillo Library. The full library is only $35 and had EVERY rule and guideline necessary concerning the Episcopal Cursillo program. This is an absolutely invaluable tool for every parish, convocation and diocese to be sure they are keeping the true focus of Cursillo.

    (Nadine) Yep, it is. This issue was hashed out on a national level in the Episcopal Cursillo in the mid-to-late 1980's. Final decision was that if a movement is going to use the name "Cursillo" their weekend participants must be of their own denomination. This is per the licensing agreement with the Roman Catholic movement, which holds rights to the name "Cursillo." The intent is to prevent proselytizing. Some movements (even some RC movements) wanted to remain interdenominational and so broke off, took other names, and developed their own materials. Southern Ohio Episcopal Cursillo has held weekends for only Episcopalians since the late 1980's. However, anyone from any three-day movement can sponsor an Episcopalian candidate to our weekends, as long as they are willing to take on the sponsor's duties (get the candidate to Ultreyas and into a group reunion, etc.). I sure hope there's no problem with sponsoring across denominations -- some of us sponsor our non-Episcopalian friends to other movements' weekends!

    The following is a statement prepared by the National Episcopal Cursillo Committee in response to the discussion on Ecumenical Cursillo.

    The Cursillo Movement has been a great blessing to many people in various ecclesial traditions. Some would say that the Cursillo method itself is a wonderful gift of God, which enables and empowers Christian men and women to be confident apostolic witnesses for Jesus Christ.  Certainly, this is the point of view shared by the leadership of the National Episcopal Cursillo.

    It is important, however, to recognize that this gift did not drop full-blown from heaven.  It has a history.  And much has been learned about how Cursillo can work and work at its best, and what distortions can affect the Cursillo to the detriment of the movement and the method, and to the detriment of those who participate in it.

    The Cursillo Movement was born in the Roman Catholic Church.  It was formed to support and encourage the evangelistic mission of the Church: reaching individuals and social environments with the Gospel in order that both may be transformed - "Christianized."  The focus of the Cursillo Movement from the beginning was on the Fourth Day, defined as communities of Christians engaged in apostolic witness and action.  The Three-day "short course" was developed in order to help nominal Christians understand the mission of the Church that is at the heart of Baptism, and to deepen their understanding of how the resources of the Church - piety (prayer), study of God's Word, spiritual direction, community relationships and accountability, and especially the Sacraments - undergird and support effective and ongoing Christian witness.  The Three-day Weekends were created to bring more people into the Fourth Day.

    To their credit, the Roman Catholic Cursillo was very generous in assisting other ecclesial communities to appropriate and develop the Cursillo method within their own traditions.  The Episcopal Church was one of the first such ecclesial communities to receive this gift.

    At the same time, the Roman Catholic Cursillo was concerned to keep the Cursillo method clear and focussed, and to guard it against misappropriations and distortions.  One way to do this was to maintain legal authority over the name, the literature and the implementation of the Cursillo.  We need to be very clear about what was going on:  The Roman Catholic Cursillo was not primarily interested in power issues or "control." Still less were they seeking to "profit" from it.  Rather, they were quite willing to hand on the Cursillo so that it might assist other Christian communities to benefit from what they had found and received through it. They simply wanted to insure, to the extent possible, that the method not be used for purposes other than that for which it had been shared.

    The Episcopal Cursillo movement was given official authorization by the Roman Catholic Secretariat through a license agreement with the National Episcopal Cursillo Committee.  This license agreement stipulates that the literature of the Episcopal Cursillo is subject to approval by the Roman Catholic Secretariat, and that the NECC will make its materials available only to those diocesan movements which are affiliated with the National Episcopal
    Cursillo.  The license agreement also stipulates that the NEC will recognize as affiliated movements those in the Episcopal Church (and other Anglican bodies) which are under the authority of their diocesan bishop, hold weekends for Episcopal communicants, and are under the leadership of Episcopal clergy and lay people.

    With this background, we will try to answer several recent questions and conjectures:

    1.  Why are there concerns about including non-Episcopalians on Cursillo weekends?

    The first concern is that the Cursillo not be used to proselytize.  Cursillo weekends are powerful spiritual events.  But these weekends are not intended to serve as an end in themselves.  They are meant to equip Episcopalians to be more effective witnesses for Christ in their everyday environments.  What often happens is that non-Episcopalians who do attend these weekends may be misled (intentionally or not) to believe that the spiritual power comes from the specifically Episcopalian structure of the weekend, rather than from the Spirit of God.  The result has often been that non-Episcopal participants seek to unite with the Episcopal Church in order to maintain the nurturing community they have found there.  Cursillo was not intended to make more Episcopalians.  It was intended to make Episcopalians more effective Christian apostles in their environments.

    The second concern is that Cursillo help Episcopalians understand the resources of their own tradition in order to become more effective apostles.  The Episcopal tradition is unique in comparison with other Christian bodies.  This does not imply that it is superior.  It is only to say that there are aspects of our understanding of the Christian faith and practice, which are not shared by other Christians.  For example:  much of the Episcopal Cursillo weekend is devoted to deepening an understanding of the Sacraments as means which God uses to support our evangelistic witness.  What benefit does this understanding provide to those who do not share it?  To those whose ecclesial tradition is rooted in a non-Sacramental practice?  The result of including persons who come from traditions that are non-Sacramental can go in two unfortunate directions:  a) either we communicate a sense in which our tradition and understanding IS superior to others; or b) we communicate that our tradition is really of no particular consequence, and may be regarded as optional.  Neither result is desirable.

    2.  But isn't the notion of ecumenism a desirable good, and can't Cursillo help promote ecumenism?

    Ecumenism is a good thing.  The word comes from the Greek, meaning "a household."  The desire to build one household of all Christians is deeply rooted in contemporary Christian bodies and, in fact, grows out of our Lord's own intention for his people.  But the fact of the matter is that there is NOT one household.  Pretending that there is a single household or that the matters that have separated us over time are not really significant is dishonest and simplistic.

    Cursillo, in any event, was not designed - and it is not competent - to promote true ecumenism.  Its task is much more modest.  It is pastoral, equipping members of the Church to be actively engaged with individuals and social environments for the sake of the Gospel.

    It is significant that Cursillo HAS demonstrated and in fact promoted the idea that Christians can and should work together to transform environments.  The license agreement under which the Episcopal Cursillo operates only affects the Three-day Weekends and the materials used to support them.  Cursillistas from various ecclesial traditions have always been able to work together in the Fourth Day - where the action is and where it really counts - for the sake of Christ.  And, indeed, cursillistas are able and encouraged to work with Christians who have never come close to Cursillo in transforming their environments.

    3.  But aren't there "ecumenical Cursillos" already?

    The answer to this is a simple "No."  The word "ecumenical" in this context means "interdenominational."  The only meaningful use of the term "ecumenical Cursillo" would apply when two or more historic Christian bodies had recognized and established inter-communion with each other - as is fervently hoped and prayed for, for example, between the Episcopal Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America - a circumstance which would then (and only then) permit fully sharing the Cursillo weekends.

    There are "interdenominational" Cursillos.  However, none of these is authorized by the Roman Catholic Secretariat, who alone holds legal authority over the name and materials associated with the Cursillo Movement.  The National Episcopal Cursillo Committee is not authorized to grant permission for these interdenominational weekends.  And in terms of the issues discussed above, it would be unwise to grant such permission.

    The fact that in some places, Cursillo weekends have been, almost from the beginning, "interdenominational" changes nothing.  In the first place, these weekends have been accidental in the sense that they developed before anyone really thought through the issues involved.  Secondly, they tend to reflect a sense that the real action is on the weekends as ends in themselves.  Some people see the "success" of the Cursillo only in terms of how many persons make the weekends, or how inspiring the weekends are.  If the weekends promote deeper spiritual awareness or build "community" feeling, they are regarded as right and good.  The Cursillo movement measures "success" in terms of evangelization - of bringing other persons to Christ, and Christ to environments.

    4.  Why are these "interdenominational Cursillos" permitted to continue?

    No one "permits" them.  It is simply that there is a hesitancy to try to impose a solution on them, either by the Roman Catholic Secretariat or the National Episcopal Cursillo Committee.  Both bodies have been patiently working to help all parties concerned to understand the principles involved.  It may be said that both are more concerned with  promoting a clear understanding of the Cursillo method and its purpose than with policing particular infractions.

    However, it is important to recognize that, ultimately, the legal authority to take action rests with the Roman Catholic Secretariat.  And the RCS does possess the authority to take such action.

    The NECC does not have authority to discipline its member movements.  It can refuse to make available its educational and programmatic materials to non-cooperative diocesan movements.  And, under the license agreement, the NECC may be required to do so by the RCS.

    By far the best result would be for leaders in the Cursillo movement to recognize the importance of maintaining the authentic Cursillo, consistent with its intention and method, by cooperation and compliance with the principles and provisions of the license agreement.  Where this has been done, the Cursillo movement has tended to grow and mature, and become dynamic and vital as a ministry.

    There have always been individuals and communities who thought they "knew better" how to do and improve the Cursillo.  These movements have tended to become in-grown and self-serving.  They have become, not a vital instrument for the growth of the Church, but a cliquish and self-perpetuating novelty.

    5.  Isn't the bottom line that being in compliance with the license agreement is "exclusionary"?

    No.  The intention of the license agreement is to be sure that the Cursillo movement honestly serves its rightful purpose.  To do so, it is important that those who lead and those who make the Cursillo be well grounded already in the ecclesial tradition to which they belong.

    If the Cursillo is used for proselytizing, or if it has this result, it would violate the religious tradition of others.  If, furthermore, leaders within the Cursillo determine that such a violation is inconsequential - that it really doesn't matter what others believe because, for example, "we are all Christians" - such an attitude would be a form of ecclesial imperialism.  It would be to assume an air or attitude of superiority with regard to persons of other religious traditions.  Neither result would be exemplary, honest, or consistent with Christian love (agape).

    The claim that compliance with the license agreement is "exclusionary" is not founded in the truth, ignores the history of the Cursillo movement, is counterproductive, and is merely rhetorical.  It suggests that those entrusted with overseeing the Cursillo movement and insuring that it fulfills its purpose are really acting from bad motives.  It is also simplistic, casting the whole matter in black and white terms.

    The Roman Catholic Cursillo has been very generous in offering to assist any Christian body to appropriate and develop the Cursillo method within its own tradition.  This takes singular devotion and commitment, and a lot of hard work.  But the labor is worthwhile and can be - has been - very fruitful.  The Episcopal Cursillo movement, and Episcopal Cursillo leaders have been willing and ready to assist in this labor.  For those who are serious in seeing that the blessings of the Cursillo movement be handed on to other Christians will take the surer - if more difficult - route to making this happen.  Merely opening the doors to all comers is not "inclusionary," but is instead taking the easiest and most convenient route.

    6.  Is the present license agreement set in concrete?

    The answer to this question is: "Yes and no."

    "Yes:" As long as the Cursillo name and materials are used by a local movement, the leaders of  that movement must consider themselves morally and legally bound to respect the license agreement.  Those who share the dream and goals of the Cursillo founders and who are well-versed in its method and history will honor the license agreement both in the letter and in spirit, and will count it a joy to do so for the sake of the integrity and potential of Cursillo.

    "No:"  The National Committee and the local movements are free to make whatever changes they wish to any and all aspects of their own materials, programs and implementation, including guidelines for participants and leaders.  What these groups are not free to do is to continue to call the end product "Cursillo."  Many renewal efforts which have been more or less based on Cursillo and which are modifications of it have been established, and some are flourishing.  Nothing in the world can prevent the proliferation of such entities.

    But Cursillo is not everything.  It is one thing: equipping Christians from specific ecclesial communities to serve Christ as His apostles in the world.  It seeks to accomplish this purpose by its own very specific method.

    Those who seek to change Cursillo should be ready and willing, should they do so, to call it something else - not trade on the name while shamelessly passing off another product.

    Statement affirmed by the National Episcopal Cursillo Committee, April 19, 1997.

    6. What is the flow of the weekend, and how does it differ between the various movements?

    Episcopal Cursillo (diocese of Texas):

    Thursday evening:

    The candidates arrive. Team members carry their luggage for them and engage in chit chat to try to make them feel welcomed and safe.

    Watches are taken up.
    A silent retreat is begun.
    The stations of the cross is done.
    The Prodigal Son meditation
    Examination of conscience


    Morning prayer
    Three glances meditation
    Rollo #1 - Ideal
    Rollo #2 - Grace
    Rollo #3 - Laity
    Rollo #4 - Holy Spirit
    Introduce general palanca (candy, posters)
    Rollo #5 - Piety
    Make posters to summarize the day


    Morning Prayer
    Person of Christ meditation
    Rollo #6 - Study
    Rollo #7 - Sacraments
    Clay responses to talks
    Chapel visits by decuria
    Rollo #8 - Action
    Rollo #9 - Obstacles to Grace
    Rollo #10 - Leaders


    Las Mananitas
    Morning Prayer
    Rollo #11 - Environment
    Rollo #12 - Christian Community
    Rollo #13 - Life in Grace
    Rollo #14 - Reunion / Ultreya (may be 1 or 2 talks)


    Fourth day begins


    Kairos flow (Texas)


    Enter prison at 3:00 PM and proceed to Gym, where advance team has already set everything up. At 4:00 the brothers in white arrive. We each have one or two we are the sponsors for. We find our candidates, give them their nametag and their Freedom Guide (pamphlet of prayers) and try to make them feel comfortable with chit-chat, cookies, coffee...

    Meditation - I Chose You
    Meditation - Know Yourself
    Meditation - The Prodigal Son
    Big sack of cookies before they leave for the night


    Meditation - The Three Glances of Christ
    Talk - Goals
    Talk - Friendship With God
    Midday Prayer
    Meditation - Acceptance of Self
    Talk - The Church
    Talk - You Are Not Alone
    General Palanca
    Talk - Spirituality
    Talk - Spiritual Counseling
    Posters summarizing the day
    Meditation - Accepting God's Forgiveness
    Big sack of cookies before they leave for the night


    Meditation - Who Is Jesus Christ?
    Meditation - Forgiveness of Others
    Talk - Discovery
    Talk - Christ Among Us
    Talk - Action
    Meditation - The Wall
    Talk - A Christian
    Personal Palanca
    Meditation - Forgiveness of Others
    Forgiveness service
    Big sack of cookies before they leave for the night


    Meditation - Christ's Message To Kairos
    Talk - The World Around Us
    Talk - The Grace Full Life
    Talk - Christian Community
    Talk - Hang In There
    Talk - Your Walk


    Lutheran Cursillo (Southern California)


    Pilgrims Arrive
    First Meditation "Know Yourself" (Clergy)
    Stations of the Cross (go through 14 stations with readings and respones)
    Second Meditation- "The Prodigal Son" (Clergy)
    Silence until morning (Time for Self Examination)


    Chapel Service/Communion/Third Meditation
    First Rollo-Ideal (lay)
    Second Rollo-Grace (clergy)
    DeColores Lunch
    Third Rollo- Laity (lay)
    Fourth Rollo-Faith (clergy)
    Fifth Rollo- Piety (lay)
    Passing out of Palanca Bags
    Theme Dinner (has been BBQ, German Lutheran, etc., decided by Head Cook)
    Poster Session and Skits for rollos
    4th Meditation (clergy)
    Footwashing (done by clergy/rector teams/head cook and asst's)


    Chapel Service/ 5th Meditation (clergy)
    6th Rollo- Study (lay)
    7th Rollo- Sacraments (clergy)
    Mime Communion/Dying Moments service (utilizes what was discussed in the Sacraments rollo)
    8th Rollo- Apastolic Action (lay)
    Banners and devotional books passed out
    9th rollo- Obstacles to Grace (clergy)
    Prayer Time for Decurias
    Agape Dinner
    10th Rollo- Leaders (lay)
    Poster Session/Skits
    Affirmation of Baptism/Healing Service


    Mananitas Breakfast
    11th Rollo- Environments (lay)
    12th Rollo- Christian Life (clergy)
    13th Rollo- Christian Community (lay)
    14th Rollo- Green (Usually Head Cook)
    15th Rollo- Ultreya/Group Reunion (lay)
    Lunch/Grouping Time for Decuria
    16th Rollo- 4th Day (Given by Rector/a)
    Closed Clausura
    Open Clausura

    Begin 4th Day!

    6.1 Roles of team, spiritual and lay directors, and others

    6.2 What about palanca - specific and general

    (Virginia) I am the palanca coordinator for our local movement here in southwestern Ontario. I understand where you are coming from with your needs for prayer for specific individuals on a weekend. However, this form of Palanca is termed "general palanca" and is not meant for individuals on the weekend but for *all* of the candidates, together with their needs to bond in their table groups and to open their hearts to the presence of the Holy Spirit. The teams also need palanca since they are leading the candidates to a new way of living and many times have to give guidance and support to troubled candidates. The Palanca is designed to make all things on the weekend run smoothly with God's infinite help so that all candidates can get the most possible out of the weekend. The type of Palanca you are referring to is also much needed on the weekend and is termed "personal palanca", which is in the form of letters written to specific candidates with prayers and sacrifice for that individual as opposed to the whole process going on on any weekend. Some movements only allow personal palanca from close friends, relatives and sponsors. In our movement, we encourage personal palanca from the greater community. This shows the candidates that even total strangers are making sacrifices in their personal lives for them. Sorry if I have said anything to upset you here but I have tried to explain palanca as I have seen it work through our own movement. We have just completed our men's weekend and it was truly blessed with the Holy Spirit the whole time.

    7. What about the fourth day?

    7.1 Ultreya

    From the book titled The Fundamental Ideas of The Cursillo Movement, by the World Organization of the Cursillo Movement (OMCC):

    "Ultreya: The Reunion of Group Reunions, which, in an attitude of progressive conversion, leads its members to share what is fundamental for being a Christian, and the evangelical leavening of the environments."

    In the Episcopal Cursillo, Diocese of Washington (DC), we have our small group reunions, comprised of 4-5 members, meeting weekly. We also hold monthly Ultreyas at three different locations within the diocese (one north, one central, one south). Basically, the Ultreya is a way for the reunions (and guests) to experience a bit more of the community, without being on "a weekend". We usually have a supper, sing, and have a floating reunion (count off around the room, and split off to reunion groups that way), and then re-gather for a witness talk and reflection.

    Ultreya - it's a gathering of the community. Ours meets once a month in various local churches. There's singing, BORING announcements, fellowship, a Fourth Day talk and communion. It's a great way to stay plugged into your community.

    7.2 Reunion

    If you don't, then do! More on this later...

    7.2.01 Electronic Reunion Groups

    What if I don't have a local group that I can reunion with?
    Consider an e-reunion.
    What's an e-reunion?

    A group of 5-7 individuals who get together each week and share a reunion just like normal, except electronically through e-mail.
    How does it work?

    Briefly, each person shares his(her) thoughts on a standard reunion outline in an e-mail message to everyone in the group sometime during a one week period. The next week, everyone can respond to the e-mail messages with support, encouragement, challenges, prayers, etc. Then you start all over again.
    Who can participate?

    Anyone who has been to a 3 day retreat based on the Cursillo movement, including: Cursillo (any denomination), Walk to Emmaus, Via De Cristo, Tres Dias, Chrysallis, Happening, Kairos, TEC, etc.
    Okay, I'd like to find out more. How?
    E-mail a request for more information directly to Rev. Dan Rodriguez:

    Please note that it is VERY IMPORTANT to e-mail Dan direct so he can reply to your message. Any requests posted on the general board will be missed.

    Carl will send you detailed information and a covenant agreement for you to consider joining a group. If you're still intersted, e-mail back to him and he will put your name on a waiting list until it's big enough and there is a volunteer facilitator to start a new group.
    How many groups are active?

    The first group was formed in August 1994 with 7 members from Maine, Indiana, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Oregon and South Carolina. 3 members of that group have dropped out and 2 others have been added. All but 1 of the members have met at least 1 other member in person over the last 2 years for a "live" reunion. Six other groups have been started since then, and as far as is known, 2 or 3 of them are still active.

    8. Where can I find paraphernalia? (Bumper stickers, etc)

    There is a company that specializes in selling Emmaus/Cursillo/etc. music, books, shirts, mugs, and other assorted paraphernalia. It's based in Houston, and it's call "De Colores, Inc." They sell either wholesale or via a catalog. If you're interested, you can contact them at:
    De Colores!, Inc., 
    1302 Munger
    Houston, TX 77023
    713-921-0224 FAX
    They'll take the information and send you the appropriate information for ordering and getting their catalog.


    Not too surprisingly, Cokesbury (which is a division of the United Methodist Church) carries a fairly good selection. They have stores that I know about in Knoxville and Nashville.

    Address: P.O. Box 801, Nashville, TN 37202-0801
    Phone: 800-672-1789

    They have a De Colores-specific catalog available.

    You can get copies of the Group Reunion card for $.10 ea. through the National Episcopal Cursillo Office P.O. Box 1967, Vienna VA 22183-1967 or by phone (703)-938-3901 9-5 est Monday-Thurs.


     A great place for palanca "stuff".  The bookstore at St. Thaddeus Episcopal Church in Aiken, South Carolina has a great selection.

    9. References

    9.1 Print references

    You can find the history of the Cursillo in the booklet named The Original of The Cursillo Movement. You can order this booklet thru the Office of The National Secretariat at Dallas, Texas. Its phone number is (214)339-6321

    National Ultreya Publications
    The National Cursillo Center
    P.O. Box 210226
    Dallas, Texas 75211
    (Roman Catholic Cursillo)

    The booklet "What Is Emmaus?" by Stephen D. Bryant contains a description of the Emmaus Walk and history and organization of the Emmaus movement.

    The NEC Library is a notebook containing 20 booklets (in the deluxe edition)covering such subjects as:
    A Day of Deeper Understanding
    Authentic Three Day Weekend
    Cursillo Workshops
    Group Reunion
    Health an Well Being of the Movement
    Music and Cursillo
    Pastoral Plan
    Role of the Clergy in the Cursillo Movement
    Servant Community
    Spiritual Direction
    The Apostolic Message and Team Formation
    The By-Laws & Legal Documents of the NEC
    The Fourth Day
    What is Cursillo
    Lay Talks Workbook
    Spiritual Advisor's Workbook

    The Library was poblished in 1989 and some sections have since been revised.
    It is available from the National Episcopal Cursillo, POB 1967, Vienna, VA 22183-1967   (703)938-3901; e-mail:

    9.2 URL's

    The Weekend Request form may be found at:

    The Cursillo page may be found at:

    A page devoted to the history of Cursillo (in Spanish) at

    Chester Diocese (UK) Cursillo home page

    National Episcopal Cursillo Home Page :

    Worldwide Cursillo® Links :

    Good resource list :

    West Harris County (Texas) Episcopal Cursillo:

    Texas Episcopal Cursillo:

    Puget Sound Walk to Emmaus:

    Kairos page :

    The Upper Room:
    or try

    TAMU Aggie Awakening:

    Central Illinois Chrysalis:

    Scott Rollins has put up an electronic copy of the group reunion card used by the Challenge Movement in the Ottawa area on the web. It can be reached from the Challenge home page or directly at:
    the Challenge page
    Happening web page

    The new/revised address/URL for the Santa Clara communities pages is -

    I just wanted to tell you about our new San Diego County Cursillo Home Page. The URL is:

    Santa Clara Valley (CA) Cursillo Home Page
    A good Cursillo community homepage

    Vocare National page
    The Great Banquet

    Are there any other related mailing lists?

    9.3 Organizational Contacts and governance

    9.3.1 Episcopal Cursillo

    There is a national organization (see address below) that develops materials and provides direction and guidance to the diocesean organizations. Within each diocese there is a governing board that picks rectors, helps set up the weekends, and generally keeps things going.

    National Episcopal Cursillo
    PO Box 1967
    Vienna VA 22183-1967
    (703) 938-3901

    9.3.2 British Anglican Cursillo

    President of the British Anglican Cursillo Council (BACC) (for anyone wanting a UK contact)
    Mr Paddy Creber,
    13 Russell Terrace,
    St. Davids,
    Exeter. EX4 4HX

    9.3.3 Kairos

    Kairos has a national organization, and state organizations (since access to the prison system must be done state-by-state). Within each state, there are governing organizations by prison to run the weekends and followup for that particular prison, minimizing the involvement of the state organization in the operational details.

    Kairos, Inc.
    National Office
    140 N. Orlando Avenue, Suite 220
    Winter Park, Florida 32789-3680
    (407) 629-4948

    9.3.4 Emmaus

    Upper Room address:
    1908 Grand Ave., Box 189, Nashville, TN 37202-0189
    it lists an email address:
    Emmaus contact person at Upper Room is K. Cherie Jones (615-340-7222)

    - How is Walk to Emmaus governed? Is there a national board and local boards?

    Yes, both are autonomous and covenantly linked. In order to use the "Walk To Emmaus" name a community must agree to hold it's weekends according to the model set forth by the Upper Room.

    The Walk is a part of the Upper Room and is governed by a board composed of representatives from various Conferences of the United Methodist Church. Each conference has a board made up of representatives from the various Emmaus communities within the conference.

    There is an International Steering Committee, with 15 US Members from 5 regions, and 4 International (Currently South Africa, Germany, Mexico, and NSW Australia), and 4 ex-officio members (Kairos, Chrysalis, and 2 past directors.)

    - And what is The Upper Room? (and why is it called that?)

    It is the discipleship ministry arm of the United Methodist Church (ask a Methodist). The Upper Room, INC, is the publishing house of the UMC and holds the copyright to the Emmaus Walk which includes the procedures on how to put on a walk. As a subsidiary of the UMC it is tied in to the church and has the support of it. The title comes from the location of the first communion - in a upper room.

    The Upper Room Emmaus
    1908 Grand Ave.
    Nashville TN 37212

    The direct line to the international office of the Walk to Emmaus is 615/340-7227. Jean Johnson is a wealth of information. Cherie Jones may also answer the phone. She is the international spiritual director of the Walk to Emmaus.

    Rev K Cherie Jones, Director 615 340-7222
    Jean Johnson, Program Director 615 340-7227
    Fax 615 640-7006

    - Does anyone know when, how and where Walk to Emmaus started?

    Officially, 1981. Although there were many different expressions of Cursillo type things that preceded that date that were done by the same people.

    In 1977 the UMC began to use the "Upper Room Cursillo" after staffers from the UR attended a Cursillo in Miami.

    In April and May of 1977 the revised UMC weekends were tested and adopted for the UMC. In 1981 the National Secretariat of the Roman Catholic Cursillo Movement and the Upper Room agreed to separate and the Emmaus Movement was given its' name.

    The Walk to Emmaus began around 1978(?). They were originally called United Methodist Cursillo but there were apparently enough differences between the walk and cursillo that the name was changed. I know many members of our Emmaus community who have come from Cursillo communities that tell me the weekend experience overall is virtually the same between the two groups. Other than logistics and maybe certain denominational slants, there is not a great difference in the layout or the impact of the weekends. Let me emphasize, like all the movements I read about here, the walk is non-denominational. ALL are welcome.

    The walks are also international. We have a fair presence in Australia and South Africa as well as a growing presence in many other countries including a small toe-hold in the old Soviet Union. The very first set of walks ever in Ghana Africa wil be held in January 1996. The community from Lexington Kentucky is sending team members over to sponsor those weekends! Cool, huh?

    "In the late 1970s, The Upper Room (a unit of the Board of Discipleship of the United Methodist Church) formed The Upper Room Cursillo in Nashville, Tennessee. In 1981, by mutual agreement between the National Secretariat of the Roman Catholic Cursillo movement and The Upper Room, the name of the Nashville Protestant Community was changed to Emmaus. The Emmaus movement is Ecumenical."

    9.3.5 Tres Dias

    Address of the Editor of the Tres Dias International news is:
    Zel Walch
    TD Int'l News
    166 Highfield Lane
    Nutley, NJ 07110
    201 667-3276

    9.3.6 Roman Catholic Cursillo office (USA)

    National Roman Catholic Cursillo Office
    Their fax number is 214-339-6322 and
    their phone number is 214-339-6321.
    National Secretariat of the Cursillo Movement (Roman Catholic)
    P.O. Box 210226
    Dallas, TX    75211

    10. Other matters

    10.1 Meal Blessing and copyright

    The commonly used meal blessing song "Bless our food" used to be sung to the tune "Edelweiss". The owners of the copyright to that tune have explicitly *denied* permission for it's use, and any Cursillo, Emmaus, or other community using that tune is liable to be sued, besides acting in an unethical manner.

    Pat Robson, a parishoner at Trinity Episcopal Church in San Antonio has written an alternative tune and graciously donated it to the Cursillo et al community. This tune has also been recorded (at least once) on a Rainbow tape and published in the De Colores Companion Songbook.

    Nice copies of the music may be obtained by request from (Includes a descant)

    Meal Blessing by Pat Robson

    3/4 time

    E     F   G        C     D   E     A    B  C    D   E   D    D
    h     q   h        h     q   h     h    q  q    q   q   h    h. 
    Bless our friends, Bless our food, Come Oh Lord and sit with us
    E   F   G     C    D    E      A     B    C    D  E  D     C
    h   q   h     h    q    h      h     q    q    q  q  h     h.
    may our talk, glow with peace, bring your love to surround us

    B     B    C   D     B   g    C     D   E     C     D   E    F#  G G
    q     q    q   q     q   q    h     q   h.    h     q   h    q   h. h.
    Friendship and peace may they bloom and grow, bloom and grow for-ev-er

    E     F   G        C     D   E     A    B  C    D   E   D    C
    h     q   h        h     q   h     h    q  q    q   q   h    h.
    Bless our friends, Bless our food, Come Oh Lord and sit with us

    Capital letters start with A below middle-C
    Lowercase letters are the octave below that
    q = quarternote, h=halfnote, . = .

    10.2 Prayer to the Holy Spirit (and music)

    This prayer is said during the weekend before every Rollo, and is used to open group reunions in the fourth day
    Come Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithful, and kindle in us the fire of your love.
    Send forth your spirit, and we shall be created.
    And you shall renew the face of the earth.
    O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit did instruct the hearts of the faithful, grant that by the same Holy Spirit we may be truly wise and ever enjoy His consolations; through Christ our Lord. Amen.

    Clearly, more than a few have been inspired to set this wonderful prayer to music. I can offer anyone who would like, the music composed by a member of our community with harmony by me. You can write for it:
    Laura Gregg
    Wizard Textware

    I'll spring for postage, but will specially bless those who enclose a SASE with their requests!

    10.3 Laughing Jesus Picture and copyrights

    The Laughing Jesus picture is used at many weekends. The picture of Jesus Laughing is has a Copyright date of 1977 and is held by
    PRAISE SCREEN PRINTS 11325 Blue Water Drive Traverse City, Michigan 49684 Phone 616-941-4880

    The Cursillo FAQ is maintained by Alan Jackson.


    Original HTML version produced by Geoff Riley.

    Copyright © 1996, Alan Jackson. May be freely distributed as long as this notice is retained.

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