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Why Consider Cursillo?


What is Cursillo?

A Cursillo (pronounced KER SEE O) is a three-day learning, sharing, experience of living in a Christian Community. The word "Cursillo" is Spanish, meaning "a short course." Cursillo is an abbreviation of the full title: CURSILLO DE CHRISTIANDAD, which means "A Short Course in Christian Community Living."

During the three-days of a Cursillo Weekend, a person not only hears what it really means to be a Christian but actually gets to experience the joy of building and being a part of a genuine Christian Community.

History and Purpose

The Cursillo Movement started when a group of priests and laymen in Majorca, Spain examined the condition of the Church and felt that something had to be done to assist it. From 1943 to 1947 they formulated a "method" to help renew the Church. They called it a "short course" or "short experience" in the basic teachings of Jesus, as lived with other Christians. They also developed an ongoing program for after the three-days, so that the initial enthusiasm would continue.

Cursillo was deemed an official Movement of the Catholic Church in the early sixties and was introduced into the Bay Area in 1961. It is approved by the Bishop.

What Can I Expect During The Cursillo Weekend?

Approximately twenty to thirty men or women meet from Thursday evening until Sunday evening with a team, consisting of a priest and thirty-five laypeople. There are talks, discussions, sharing, singing, joking, laughter and prayer.

  • During the three days, fifteen talks are given, ten by laypeople and five by the priest. The talks emphasize the true meaning of Grace, the Sacraments, the Mass, the nature and need for prayer, living one's daily life in union with God and introducing Christ to others by word and deed. The atmosphere of the three days is one of Joy and Grace.
  • The Cursillo Weekend provides us with the opportunity to grow. It is not meant to solve problems that exist within us or the relationships we have with others. For example, as the Cursillo Weekend begins, people are asked to look at themselves and their own reality in a community of Love. Cursillo is not designed to solve emotional, mental or medical problems.
  • Cursillo is not for everyone. The weekend and the Cursillo Movement is not a "conversion experience" in the normal sense of the word...it is not intended to convert non-believers to Christianity. People attending the Cursillo Weekend need to have a background in Christianity and accept its basic beliefs. The Weekend is centered around the Catholic Church's beliefs and the Catholic Sacraments. However, there are other movements similar to Cursillo that are Protestant based, for those who would be more comfortable in that type of Christian environment. Please contact us if you would like help in locating one of these other movements.
  • The Cursillo Weekend is intended for those who wish to deepen their relationship with Christ.

What Happens After the Cursillo Weekend?

  • The Cursillo Weekend in itself is simply a beginning.
  • The method of Cursillo has very positive results in creating spiritual revitalization of the Christian Community.
  • The influence of Christ on the individuals attending the Weekend is then transferred to their families, friends, parishes, place of business, social circles, etc.
  • The goal of the Cursillo Movement is to make Christ the prime influence in one's life and relationships. After the Cursillo Weekend, the Cursillista, (one who has made a Cursillo), is encouraged to expand their prayer life and to become a more active apostle with and for Christ.
  • The Diocese of San Jose Cursillo Community comes together in both large and small groups for fun and spiritually rewarding meetings on a regular basis. This includes Masses, potlucks, scripture studies, Renewal Weekends, socials (dances, golf tournaments, etc), but most of all, with a lot of joy and sharing. Attendance is totally up to the Cursillista.

"Where two or more gather together in my name, I shall be there with them."

Words of Christ, Gospel of St. Mathew 18:20

If there are any questions or comments please contact Barbara Louis, English Cursillo Lay Director.

Thank you and God Bless.

Last Updated: 02/13/15.
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