We will follow the outline of “The Fundamentals Ideas of the Cursillo Movement,” Chapter 6.6; pages 138-165
Kerygma is a Greek word for proclaiming or preaching How does the word “doctrine” make you feel, constrained or liberated? It is simply a codification of beliefs or a body of teachings. This is a discussion of the purpose of the talks, not how to write them.
No two weekends are ever the same and yet they are all the same. That is part of the “magic.”
What distractions are usually removed, watches, mobile phones, laptops? The objective is to free the candidates, not cause them greater anxiety. It is a chance for them to come away for a while into a desert place with Jesus.
Some candidates who have not had a loving relationship with their parents, especially their father, in childhood or adult life may find it difficult to accept God as a loving, merciful father. With Jesus, too, the relationship must be based on love and understanding, not fear and guilt. It is a relationship we are free to cultivate or reject. That is the mystery of grace and freedom.
This talk builds a foundation of self worth upon which relationships with God, neighbor, and community can be built. « God does not make junk. »
What other images of Grace can we use?
What images of the Mystical Body come to you?
How has faith changed your life? Is it something you can lose?
Do you think of yourself as being holy? Is this a talk you would like to give? This is the first leg of the tripod.
What would you ask of Jesus if He made Himself present to you?
What have you found useful in your formation. Are you confortable with thinking of yourself as a saint? This is the second leg of the triod.
How do you feel about being sacrament to others?
How do I feel about being an apostle in my daily life? Does the world see Christ in me?
The Prodigal Son had to return to the Father for forgiveness. Do I recognize my own sinfullness? What am I doing about it?
Where am I a leader? What opportunities for leadership am I missing out fear or laziness? Do I envy or resent the leadership of others.
Do I miss the peak experience of the weekend? How can I recapture it in my daily life?
Do I continue to support Cursillistas on their Fourth Day?
What is the most difficult environment for me to evangelize?
Can this dream be realized?
What role(s) do I play in my parish? Am I a passive or active member?
Do I have the support of a Group Reunion? If not, do I miss it?
What have my experiences of Group Reunion and Ultreya been?
Chapter 6-6: Proclamation of the Message: Theological Center of the Cursillo A Discussion of the “Magic” of the Weekend And How the Talks Fit In
Rules of Engagement• Nobody leaves.• Nobody sleeps.• Audience questions follow the charismatic church format: – If the question moves you, shout it out. – If you wish to agree with speaker, the appropriate response is “Amen.” – No question should embarrass speaker.
Agenda1. Characteristics of the kerygma in the Cursillo2. The Phases of the Cursillo3. The “Retreat” or step of preparation4. The stages of the proclamation5. The next phase: Development of the Christian life6. The final and continuing phase: Going out to other people and the world
1. Characteristics of the kerygma in the Cursilloa. A proclamation of doctrineb. Proclamations are given in “rollos” or talks (essential but not everything)c. Not academic treatise or theological speculation, but appeal for “a new way of life”d. Presented by practitioners, not academicse. Presented joyfully, full of the life of Christ
1. Characteristics of the kerygma in the Cursillo (contd.)f. Inspire making a “full choice,” not crammed with every detailg. Shine with naturalness, simplicity, and authenticity with a holy blush of humilityh. Witness based on living the Christian life in relationship with othersi. Subject to constant revision in union with the community
2. The Phases of the Cursilloa. Several distinct phases must be maintained.b. Each talk and event has a distinct objective.c. Cursillo is a masterpiece of teaching, a work of art, like a musical piece it must be orchestrated.d. Nonetheless, the phases must permit some flexibility to allow the Grace of God and freedom of people to act as they will.
2. The Phases of the Cursillo (contd)f. Within this freedom Cursillo has four steps: 1) Introductory retreat (first night to next AM) 2) Proclamation of Christian Faith (first day) 3) Development of Christian Life (second day) 4) Living the Christian Life in the environment (third day)f. Conversion is the objective of every phase
3. The “Retreat,” or Steps of Preparation a. The “Opening Talk” sets the stage for the weekend 1) Informal chat that welcomes candidates 2) Introduces team and candidates 3) Arouses interest in Cursillo 4) Reduces anxiety and tension 5) Decompresses from week 6) Sets a tone of mutual discovery and collaboration in the unfolding of the weekend
3. The “Retreat” (contd.)b. Retreat is held in silence free from the distractions of the world as much as possible to embrace three meditations, two on the first night, the third on the next morning.c. Know Yourself, first meditation: – has Cursillistas pause to reflect on who they really are, not what they wish they were or project to others.
3. The “Retreat” (contd.)d. The Merciful Father, second meditation: – uses the story of the Prodigal Son to portray God as our loving Father who welcomes us with open arms no matter who we are or what we have done.e. The Three Glances, third meditation –opens the first day and presents Jesus as the image of the loving father as He looks at the rich young man, Judas, and Peter. How does He see in me now? Sets Jesus as the focus for the first day.
4. The Stages of the Proclamationa. IDEAL, the first talk: – proclaims the greatness of being “fully human” and encourages a “high” ideal which gives meaning and purpose to human life. Rather than false ideals centered on self-gratification that lead to slavery, cursillistas are encouraged to seek the high ideal of self-realization, of being all that God created them to be, which is true freedom.
4. The Stages of the Proclamationb. GRACE, the second talk: – proclaims the dignity of the Christian person and sets the tone for the entire Cursillo. Grace opens us up to an encounter with God and others. It is the love of God that fills the emptiness in our souls. It makes us children of the Father and brothers and sisters with Jesus. The image of water, a thoroughly biblical image, is a helpful analogy of the “invasion” of God within ourselves.
4. The Stages of the Proclamationc. LAITY AS CHURCH IN THE WORLD, the third talk: – proclaims that we are the “face” of the Church in the world. We are “the People of God” and the “Mystical Body of Christ.” We are not isolated in our pilgrim journey, but part of a greater body instituted by and grafted into Christ and guided by the Holy Spirit. We minister to each other and to the world. The Mystical Body is central to Cursillo.
4. The Stages of the Proclamationd. FAITH, the fourth talk: proclaims that the only reasonable response to all that God has done for us and offers us is faith, a total assent (Amen) to the will and plan of God, a wholehearted attachment to Him. It concludes the three proclamations of the day: being truly human (Ideal), being Christian (Grace), being in community (Church).
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifea. HOLINESS, the fifth talk: ends the first day and proclaims that holiness is available to everyone, not the false holiness of the Pharisee, but the true holiness of the Publican, who recognizes, that despite our sinfulness, God loves us, forgives us, and walks with us. We can live our lives according to His will and not our own. Holiness, or piety, is awareness of God’s constant presence in our lives, not just special acts of devotion.
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifeb. THE FIGURE OF CHRIST, the meditation of the second day: presents Jesus as truly human and truly Divine. He not only understands our human weaknesses, but has the power to help us overcome them. Jesus is God within reach, a friend who walks, and even carries us, on our journey. Do we reach out to hold His hand?
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifec. FORMATION, the sixth talk: inspires Cursillistas to get to know themselves and God better so they can understand the world. This talk is aimed at conversion. It explains the different ways one achieves formation: contemplating nature; reading and listening to the Word of God; studying writings and lives of Saints; and dialogue with fellow saints.
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifed. SACRAMENTS, the seventh talk: - helps Cursillistas to understand the richness of the sacramental life, to discover the sacraments as signs of God’s love and encounters with Christ, to appreciate the value of each sacrament, and to realize a sacramental life is essential to true holiness and being transformed into sacrament for others.
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifee. EVANGELIZATION, the eighth talk: - helps cursillistas to understand that faith without action is hollow. We are ambassadors of Christ. He depends on us to spread the Gospel by the very way we live our lives. The key to being Christian is to love with good judgment, boldness, hope, courage, perseverance, and a spirit of sacrifice. It is the fulfillment of baptism and confirmation.
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifef. OBSTACLES TO GRACE, the ninth talk: - reminds Cursillistas that free will makes them capable of ruining God’s whole plan. 1) Sin is real and destructive. 2) Souls must be open to forgiveness. 3) True reconciliation requires repentance, a deep conversion. Only by turning away from the sinful ways of the world can the Cursillistas be truly happy as Christians.
5. The Next Phase: Development of the Christian Lifeg. LEADERS, the tenth talk: - the last one of the second day bridges “Evangelization” and “Evangelization of Environment.” It proclaims that each Cursillista 1) has a role as leader, 2) is part of a mosaic, and 3) must cultivate natural and supernatural values and talents: to take initiative, to have courage to risk, to have empathy, to be faithful to the ideal, and to have confidence in others.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worlda. The third and last day of Cursillo, from the morning meditation to the last moment of closing, is focused on the “Fourth Day” of living out a Christian life in the environment of the real world that Cursillistas encounter every day. It does not present magic formulas, but offers guidelines and direction for continuing conversion after the weekend.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worldb. THE MESSAGE OF CHRIST TO THE CURSILLISTA: - The meditation to start the day ties together all the talks of the day. It is based on Jesus’ discourse at the Last Supper and focuses on the need: 1) to bear fruit in the world; 2) to seek ways to do this; 3) to use the means of Christian Evangelization; 4) to accept the support of a vibrant Christian community.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worldc. STUDY AND EVANGELIZATION OF THE ENVIRONMENTS, the eleventh talk: - is a practical application of the talk on Leaders. It helps Cursillistas understand the nature of the environments they live in, the influence these environments have on members, the influence members can have on environments, and the Cursillistas’ opportunity and mission to evangelize these environments.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worldd. THE CHRISTIAN LIFE, the twelveth talk: - is a call to sainthood, a call: to imitate Christ; to embrace the Beatitudes; to hear & follow The Word of God; to participate in the liturgical and sacramental life of the Church; to engage in personal and communal prayer; to hunger and thirst for justice; to love in all circumstances of life. A lively discussion of the Beatitudes is a good way to end this talk.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worlde. THE CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY, the thirteenth talk: - looks at life in a parish community. Everything is possible for someone who lives in and builds community. Within our parish we can 1) share devotional life and communal love, 2) grow and mature in faith, hope, and love, 3) live with greater hope and joy our Christian life, and 4) overcome obstacles in our evangelizing efforts.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worldf. THE GROUP AND ULTREYA, the fourteenth and last talk: - offers Cursillistas two ways to continue the weekend, the Group and the Ultreya. Group Reunion is based on personal friendship of a small group that usually meets once a week to support and encourage each other using the tripod as its foundation. There are no strict rules on how a Group Reunion should take place but its focus must be sharing and supporting Christian life.
6. The Next Phase: Going Out to Other People and to the Worldf. THE GROUP AND ULTREYA: (contd.) Ultreyas are groups at the parish or larger levels that meet periodically to share the continued vision of Cursillo. Weekly meetings are ideal, but monthly or quarterly schedules may be more practical. There is not one essential format for Ultreya. But if it loses sight of its purpose to share and encourage personal and communal experiences of Christian life it will fail.