The following are thoughts from new Cursillistas who have just participated in a Cursillo Weekend. The original submissions may have been slightly modified by the Webmanager.
My name is Margaret Holt and I made the women 36th Cursillo week-end in November 2014 at Bayside Baptist Center where I sat at the table of St Madeleine.
What can I say about my Cursillo weekend- awesome, joyful and inspirational.
I was brought up in a very religious family and worshipped all through my childhood and many years afterward. There came a period in my life I stopped going to church for many personal reasons. I am so glad God didn’t give up on me as one day I started to worship again but at a different church.
I was invited to go to Ultreya and really enjoyed it. I experienced so much love and it was the beginning of my new journey. I was very apprehensive to go to a Cursillo week-end as I don’t like the unknown but with so many people praying I finally answered God’s call and what an eye opener for me and an experience that I will never forget. My faith is so much stronger. I felt guilty for abandoning God, but I know now God had never abandoned me.
The joy, music, new friends, fellowship, the laughter and yes many tears.
I attend Bible study weekly and Christian Women monthly. I attend Ultreya on a monthly basis and am now a caller for Ultreya. I was blessed a second time as I was asked to serve on team for the October 2015 week-end, renewing my spiritual walk.
God is good all the time. De Colores!
The Epistle of James says that faith without works is not enough. Then surely works without faith are not going to suffice either.
Christ found me at Cursillo. I began the weekend not having any idea of what was ahead, and as it unfolded I observed men living and acting in the faith and I grew to a deeper understanding of what faith was. If I were called upon to pin point a moment when a change came over me it was during the Saturday evening meal when I encountered Christ’s presence in the room and in me. I knew then that Christ is and always was a part of me and for a long time I had been running from that commitment. I now know and accept it. Heck, I even embrace it. Trusting that he will care for me and guide my days and occasions that are ahead. May they bear witness to his love.
I give thanks to the great people that I encountered during that weekend and to those who knew better than did I and sent me there.
Graham Lavers (2015)
My Name is Mitch Mitchell. My Christian name is William but that is another story.
I made the men’s 35th Cursillo in 2013 at St James’s Anglican Church in Kentville Nova Scotia where I sat at the table of St. Andrews.
Originally from Scotland and brought up as Roman Catholic, I joined the British Military at 17 and served for 22 years. I remain within the Aviation Industry. With my wife Wendy and our two youngest daughters I moved to Canada in 2008 for a new beginning. Our two elder children joined the British Military and stay in the UK.
We moved to Eastern Passage three (3) years ago and met some nice people who just happened to be Christians from the Anglican faith. We began attending St Peter’s Church in Eastern Passage. In all the previous years struggling with my faith, this group of people within this church was the first time that I have ever felt inner peace.
My Cursillo weekend was supposed to have been for me to give support to one of my new friends. I was not prepared for Christ to reveal himself to me that weekend. I did not expect it, nor did I think I was worthy of his revelation to me. The effect on me was life changing with a wonderful sense of belonging, my struggle to believe in Christ was over. I was broken, accepted that I could not control everything in my life, at that point I became whole when I accepted what Jesus offered.
My walk with Christ has begun, what that holds for me is in his hands, I do not ask of him, except what he wants of me I freely give. Following on from that weekend I have attended the Alpha course, a faith track study, Red letters study, Bible study and sharing fellowship with my Bible study group.
Attending Ultreya continues to remain very important to me. My wife Wendy and I co-ordinate the monthly Halifax and Metro area Ultreyas, I believe we were called to do this. I realize that this is a big challenge and commitment considering my struggles of the past, but it helps me to continue with my walk with Christ.
This year I was asked to take up the Post Cursillo Director, a step which will impact the whole Cursillo movement of Nova Scotia and PEI .The prayer “Foot Steps in the sand” explains all that I am.
Mitch Mitchell (2013)
Hi, my name is Debbie Fice and I made the 35th Cursillo weekend in Kentville, in 2013, where I sat at the table of St. Anne. Well, how to sum up my weekend? In one word, I would say JOY!
I am a ‘cradle’ Anglican. I was baptized, attended Sunday school, sang in the children’s choir and was confirmed, because that was what you did, in my family. As part of my confirmation program, a month before confirmation, our group participated in a retreat weekend, and there I found the ‘joy in the Lord’ feeling and experience. It was wonderful and meaningful and amazing! Probably very similar, I should think, to TEC weekends. Our group had plans to continue meeting, we had outreach projects we were planning, and then my dad was transferred back to Halifax. We moved back to the same area we had moved away from four years previously, and I went back to the parish church we had attended, but there were no young people attending, so I stopped going. A year later, I began attending a Pentecostal church with a friend from school. They had a very active youth group, and I once again found the joy in meeting with the Spirit with a group of like-minded friends. Sadly, after a year, our family moved again, and I stopped attending any church. Well, fast-forward twelve years or so, and as newlyweds, my husband and I were dragged to the church we currently attend (twenty-five years now!) by a friend who told us we simply HAD to come to her church. In these 25 years, we have been involved in church life and made many wonderful friends. My faith, expressed in deeds, was there, BUT, where was the joy? Yes, there had been wonderful, happy times, but that ‘in the moment, overwhelming, consuming joy’ was missing. Until, Cursillo!
Like most, I was a little apprehensive, but was trying not to anticipate, or ‘plan’ out the weekend. I didn’t know what to expect, but was willing to go with the flow, and live in the moment. What I hadn’t expected was to rediscover that overflowing joy that comes with sharing faith and spirit with a group of like-minded individuals. I know that a Cursillo weekend is a ‘mountain-top’ experience, but I am happy to say, that having rediscovered that aspect of my faith experience, I bring it out regularly for fresh air and exercise! As a teenager and young adult I hadn’t really appreciated that gift/experience, and hadn’t quite ‘gotten it’ that, like any aspect of faith, practice is required for growth.
For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst."(Matthew 18:20). For me, following Cursillo, this verse from Matthew means so much more. Fellowship, music, laughter, tears, sharing in Jesus’ name, what better recipe can you think of that encapsulates joy? DeColores!!
Debbie Fice (2013)
I am Elaine Furlong and I attended the 32nd Cursillo Weekend held at St. James Church, Kentville in May, 2010 and I sat at the table of St. Carmen.
To be blessed and loved by God while being welcomed and the excitement of making so many new friendships during my Cursillo weekend this spring was truly an amazing experience for me. All of the moments that we shared together and now hold in our hearts were uplifting for me and I am sure that each one of you holds treasured memories just as I do about our experiences together.
Every single moment was filled with worship, praise, compassion, life stories, fun, healing and love for one another and for me the entire weekend was wonderful. There was never a dull moment and not much time to sleep as we were awakened bright and early by our jubilant rhythm band.
Sharing in the delicious meals that were so lovingly prepared by women who joyfully and compassionately gave of their time especially our Saturday evening dinner, receiving Holy Eucharist daily with our entire group and our closing Sunday Service with Holy Eucharistic celebration are definitely among those memories that touched my heart.
Thank you to everyone committed to Cursillo throughout our Diocese who work tirelessly in making this Christian Ministry such a tremendous success - you are to be commended for all your efforts in and through Christ. It is heart-warming for me to know that Christ has placed me exactly where he wants me to be at this moment and he really is counting on me and you together.
Blessings and Love to Everyone,
Elaine Furlong (2010)
I am Sherryll Murphy and I attended the 32nd Cursillo weekend held at St. James Anglican Church, Kentville in May, 2010 where I sat at the table of St. Carmen.
What can I say about my Cursillo weekend? A totally renewing, rejuvenating and faith opening spiritual experience. I was simply floating and still am - albeit not quite so high. As I said on Sunday, I have been a practicing Anglican all my life. I am very involved in my parish but, I really got Jesus on this weekend.
I have understood all my life that I was being called to the Lord. I felt it in music, I recognized it in the Eucharist, I saw it in the everyday ‘coincidences’, I gloried in it in God’s nature, I believed it in my prayer. I have even felt God’s Grace at different times throughout my life. I have tried to practice and live God’s teachings and have recognized my responsibilities to others. I loved the Lord - although I didn’t say it much - I guess I thought setting the example was enough. I didn’t want to be branded one of the crazy zealots.
My weekend freed me to love the Lord and myself, as being his, without fear or embarrassment. I guess I believed that the Lord loved me, but I did not have any real understanding of just how much he loved me. I do now. The outpouring of love from all directions helped me to realize just that. I am so grateful to the Lord and to those who encouraged me to attend the weekend. I am so grateful to all those who made it happen and who made me feel so very special. The Holy Spirit worked through them to provide a totally WONDERFULL weekend. The Holy Spirit spent a great deal of time with us throughout the weekend. I know that I will never forget the stories, the loving women, the music, the yummy food, and the feeling of peace I have enjoyed since then.
Sherryll Murphy (2010)