Basics

What is Cursillo?

Cursillo is an authentic Movement under the authority of Bishop Kevin Vann in the Diocese of Orange, CA.
The Diocese of Orange, CA Cursillo Movement is a department in the Diocese and is approved and supervised by the Bishop. It is an authentic Cursillo Movement under the advice and approval of the National USA Cursillo Movement.

An Invitation

  • To be an informed Christian
  • To be an effective Christian
  • To put Christ in the center of your world

Are you ready to move forward in your faith?
For those of you who have not made a Cursillo Weekend and are interested in finding out more about Cursillo, please contact us at:

Cursillo Info Request – Efrain Gutierrez

How did Cursillo start?

A brief history of the Cursillo Movement.

Cursillo came out of the pain and horror of the Spanish Civil War which ended in 1939. Spain was a Catholic country, and in that war Catholics were fighting Catholics, and when the terrible killing ended, the country was nearly dead spiritually.

Then the Holy Spirit took charge, and a young Spanish Catholic lay group responded to a plea from Pope Pius XII to restore Christian values to their country. After prayer and discernment, these remarkable young people, decided to gather 100,000 young men and women to go on a pilgrimage to Santiago de Compostella (the burial place of St James the Apostle). It was an arduous trip and they encouraged each other by saying “Ultreya”, which means “Onward”.

The Cursillo was formed during that pilgrimage, and under the leadership of Eduardo Bonnin and Juan Hervas, Bishop of Majorca, the first Cursillo was held on the island of Majorca, Spain in 1944.

It was brought to the United States by two Spanish Military Exchange Pilots who were training with the US Air Force in Texas. The first US Cursillo was held in Waco, Texas on May 25, 1957.


Growth of Cursillo Movement

It quickly spread throughout the United States, and the first English Cursillos were held in 1961. Our first Orange Diocese Cursillo was held at Blessed Sacrament parish in Westminster in May 1977 and since then some 10,000 people in our Diocese of Orange have made their weekend and become Cursillistas here. Worldwide, there are something like 6 million Cursillistas.

There are Cursillos in nearly every major city in the US, and nearly every country worldwide.


Fruits of the Cursillo Movement

Our Catholic Cursillo has been so successful in bringing people to Christ that it has found expression in other faiths: There is a Lutheran and a Methodist Cursillo, there is also a protestant Walk to Emmaus which is essentially identical. Also coming from Cursillo has been the Kairos movement, which is an interfaith Cursillo-type weekend for those in prison. Other “retreats” based on Cursillo are the Marriage Encounter, Engagement Encounter, and a retreat for those whose marriages are troubled, called Retrovaille (pronounced Retro-Vie).


What Cursillo will mean for you?

Many who have made their Cursillo retreat weekend have likened it to a personal encounter with Christ or being touched by the Holy Spirit.

Everyone experiences something different and is touched differently by the retreat weekend. The purpose of Cursillo is:

  • A Movement of the Catholic Church which, by means of a specific method, makes it possible for people to live what is fundamental for being a Christian, and to live it together.
  • It helps people discover and fulfill their personal vocations.
  • It promotes the creation of core groups of Christians who leaven their environments with the Gospel.
  • It gives pride in being a Catholic Christian.

 


It Begins with

A three-day experience of living Christianity — a little course (in Spanish, “Cursillo”) — in Christian community. Daily Mass, communion and visits to the Blessed Sacrament are available.

It Starts on Thursday evening and ends Sunday evening. During those three days those attending live and work together listening to talks given by priests, deacons and lay persons and perticipate in small group discussions.

The talks include topics which deal with life, the Christian ideal, the Catholic Faith and the Christian approach to the world.


It continues

With an invitation to form a small Christian support group which is joined to a larger Christ-centered community in the Diocese of Orange and around the world.

The community spirit of the weekend is continued through reunions of small groups of Christians and through Ultreyas or the gathering of the larger community.

With a method to work together to bring other men and women to know and love Christ.

What happens on a Cursillo weekend?

Those who participate in a Cursillo weekend live and work together, listening to talks given by priests, deacons and lay persons, participating in small group discussions, daily Mass and visits to the Blessed Sacrament

The talks include topics which deal with life, the Christian ideal, the Catholic Faith and the Christian approach to the world.

What do I need to attend Cursillo?
  1. The candidate needs to be a Baptized Catholic and should be practicing their faith, or after receiving the Sacrament of Reconciliation are in a position to return to the sacraments.
  2. A non-Catholic spouse of a Catholic may attend Cursillo if there is an interest in joining the Catholic Church and if the Catholic is also planning to attend the Cursillo.
  3. The candidate, if married, needs to be married validly in the Catholic Church. If a candidate is not validly married in the Catholic Church, the sponsor must attach a letter stating his/her best understanding of whether or not the candidate has expressed a desire to have their marriage blessed by the church, and the extent to which the candidate is presently practicing the Catholic faith.
  4. It is preferred that, if married, both husband and wife attend the Cursillo although this does not preclude a married individual from going to Cursillo without their spouse especially if they are active in the Church.
  5. Single, divorced and widowed candidates are openly welcome to attend Cursillo.
  6. Clergy and religious are encouraged to attend the Cursillo.
  7. If someone does not meet the above criteria they may still be accepted to attend at the discretion of the Spiritual Director given a written letter from the candidate’s sponsor explaining why an exception should be granted. A statement from the candidate’s pastor or priest would also be most helpful.
  8. A Cursillo is physically and emotionally demanding. If a candidate has serious medical, mental or general health problems, the sponsor should include a letter outlining why he/she feels the candidate possesses the required stamina to successfully complete the weekend without excessively burdening the team members.
  9. If the candidate has recently undergone a life changing event such as divorce, death of a spouse, job loss, financial crisis, etc, it is better to wait until the candidate’s life settles down before attending Cursillo.
What is Pre Cursillo?

The Pre-Cursillo phase of the Cursillo Movement involves the:
Promotion of the Cursillo Movement at the parish level by parish representatives & contacts.
Education and training of effective sponsorship.
Selection and preparation of candidates who will move on to the 3-day Cursillo weekend.
The Pre-Cursillo is sometimes rightly called recruitment in the sense the United States Marine Corps recruits: “looking for a few good people” who, after having made the 3-day Cursillo weekend, naturally will have influence on the environments in which they live and work; to evangelize those environments for Christ.


Terms

Palanca

Palanca is prayer, sacrifice, alms-giving, works of mercy, and acts of love for God – for the sake of another.

School of Leaders

The School of Leaders is the place where the work of the Cursillo movement is planned, shared, and carried out. It meets monthly, using a Leaders Group Reunion as the format in which this is done. It’s members come from the membership of Cursillistas in Orange County. School of Leaders is open to all Cursistas who have made a Cursillo weekend anywhere, anytime. So come join us and fulfill the mission to evangelize the world.


Website

How do I put the Cursillo icon on my Android phone?

Cursillo-Mobile-Icon

Step 1
Open Chrome on your Android phone. Visit the website for which you want to create a shortcut (in this case: http://www.occursillo.org/).

Note: whatever website page from which you preform the next steps is the page that will show when you click the shortcut.

Step 2
Tap the “Menu” button on the bottom right of the screen and select “Add to homescreen” to create an icon for this page on your home screen.

chrome_add_homescreen

Step 3
Type a name for the icon and tap “Add.”

chrome_add_title

NOTE: You can move the icon to the desired location on your home screen by tapping and holding it until the phone vibrates. Slide the icon where you want it and lift your finger to place it.

How do I put the Cursillo icon on my iPhone?

Cursillo-Mobile-Icon

Step 1
Open Safari (yes it must be Safari) on your iPhone. Visit the website for which you want to create a shortcut (in this case: http://www.occursillo.org/).

Note: whatever website page from which you preform the next steps is the page that will show when you click the shortcut.

Step 2
Tap the “Share” button on the bottom of the screen.

iPhone_Share

Select “Add to Home Screen” to create an icon for this page on your home screen.

add-to-home-screen

Step 3
Type a name for the icon and tap “Add.”

iphone-add-button

NOTE: You can move the icon to the desired location on your home screen by tapping and holding it until the phone vibrates. Slide the icon where you want it and lift your finger to place it.

Why did we need a new website?

Think of it like new wine (Jn 2:1-11). According to the head waiter, the old wine was good and the new wine is exceedingly good… let me explain…

The previous website was built and maintained in charity by good people responding to the need of the community. Likewise, the new website is built and maintained in charity by good people meeting the increased need of an increased community and beyond.

Here are some of the problems faced by this growing community that are resolved or will soon be resolved by the new website:

  • Document Version Control – It was difficult for users to know what was the most recent candidate list and when it was updated.  There is no longer a need to create documents of this kind.
  • Time Sensitive Updates – The lists and news had to be created, edited and uploaded.  Now lists are built on-the-fly as soon as data is entered into the database.
  • Multiple Distribution Channels – Lists used to be sent through Google Groups or by email and then posted to the website, requiring management of multiple streams.  Now they will be available exclusively on the website.
  • Code Heavy Content – All posts, pages and documents had to be added directly in php, html and css through an ftp connection, requiring at least one person with a specific skill-set; a webmaster.  Now content can be managed through an interface that is as familiar as Microsoft Word and can be managed by many persons; contributors, editors, administrators etc.
  • Information Delivery – Information was downloaded, adding more steps to getting what you came for, and taking up local storage space.  Now information is delivered directly inline and temporarily occupies a tiny space on the user’s device.
  • Screen Estate – In order to view a page on a cell phone or tablet the page had to be constantly re-sized and scrolled.  Static menus could not be collapsed to save valuabel space.  Now the site adjusts for smaller screens and gives mobile users the option to switch interfaces.  Menus expand and collapse by click or tap.
  • Time Intensive Labor – Previously, volunteers had to create content, sometimes convert to pdf, email it, duplicate the information in a database, convert again to code and upload – 4 to 6 steps by two or more persons.  Now, content is created in a web interface (much like social media applications) and published – 2 steps.  The old way meant that making revisions redoubled the same 6 step process for everyone involved.  The new process for revisions involves one person and just 2 steps.

There are many more benefits to the new site that have yet to be fully realized by the community and especially on the administrative side, which we’ll reveal and discover in due time.

Yes, all these things were possible to accomplish on the previous website, but only with increasing complexity as new technologies continue to develop.  This new website can grow with the community for quite some time.

Someday, probably sooner than expected, this website will become obsolete, and when that happens we won’t miss anything that we used to have because everything we had, we will still have; just magnified in a new way.  It will be like new wine, both reminiscent and effervescent,  tasting a little like the first and yet refreshed, making us marvel at the surpassing goodness of God.

Tim Bartel
OC Cursillo Communications Secretary (webmaster)