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A Newsletter for the 4th Day of the Scranton, Pennsylvania, Cursillo Community

Special Interest Articles New Cursillistas! Regional Encounter National Visits G.K. Chesterton



Don't Forget to Thank Him by Natalie Kocsis

The 57th Women's Cursillo of the Diocese of Scranton was held at St. Gabriel's Monastery in Clarks Summit, from September 30 to October 3. God provided a spiritfilled team of beautiful, devout, caring women and men. In addition to the lay women on team, we were blessed with Father Peter O'Rourke, Deacon Bill Graham, Sister Mary Magdalene Sladika and Sister Mary Eleanor Thornton. This was the first time the women's team had a Deacon on hand for the entire weekend. His presence added immensely to the holiness and divine flow of the weekend. Our journey began in January with our monthly meetings, which always began with a reading about thanking God for His answers. This theme was joyfully embraced by the team, and during the Cursillo weekend, by the candidates. Our overnight stay at St. Gabe's (thank you Jim Kalp for starting this wonderful tradition) allowed us to share our witness and to bond as a team in a way that no simple day time meeting could. The Rollos were given with the Grace inspired by the Holy Spirit. I have never heard Rollos so infused with love, wit, faith and sharing! The team gave everything that was needed so that the wonderful women sent to us as candidates would be given everything to continue into their Fourth Day. At the closing, the main content of the new Cursillistas response to the weekend was one of power - the power of the Holy Spirit, the power of prayer, the power of God's love. (Continued on Page 5)

De Colores!

National Coordinator Visits Local Cursillistas

Individual Highlights News from National Ultreya! 2 2 We were very fortunate on September 15, 2010, to have Cef Auguillon, the National English Coordinator, and Michael Ciccocioppo, Region 2 Coordinator, visiting our Diocese. On this feast of Our Lady of Sorrows, Cef and Michael met with members of the Secretariat and fellow Cursillistas following the Our Lady of Sorrows Rosary and Mass at St. Mary's, Avoca. Cef started the meeting with a presentation on the need for personal contact, authentic witness, and real palanca ( prayer, sacrifice and works of mercy) in all three phases of the movement--- pre-cursillo, the 3 day weekend and post-cursillo. Stressing friendship and the need for a strong post-cursillo to support the new cursillistas, plans are currently in progress to focus on sponsorship and increasing the availability of Ultreyas. In a letter dated October 18, 2010, Cef writes: "I commend the Cursillo community for their continued dedication and perseverance in serving Christ through the gift of Cursillos in Christianity. Please thank the Cursillistas for all their contributions to Cursillo.

By Donna Valenti

How Do I Spend an Hour 3 Who Will Bring Jesus? G.K. Chesterton Finances & Fundraising Feast of St. Andrew Upcoming Events 3 4 4 5 6

As committed leaders, dedicated to promoting and living the true charism of Cursillo ourselves, we have come to understand that Cursillo is not something that we do; it is something that we live, simply because to live Cursillo is to live the Gospel." Cef strongly recommended two books: The Cursillo Movement ­ Study of the Charism, available from the NACG and School of Leaders, and My Spiritual Testament, available at the National website. (continued next page)



National Coordinator Visits continued . . .

"Let us continue to press on, asking the Lord to keep us united with our eyes fixed on Him whom we serve!"

It was a wonderful and inspiring evening. I thank all those who took the time to attend and participate. Let us continue to press on, asking the Lord to keep us united with our eyes fixed on Him whom we serve! De Colores! By Donna Valenti

(Pictured from left to right, are Donna Valenti, Cef Auguillon, Maria Kocsis and Michael Ciccocioppo)

News from National Cursillo: The Foundational Charism of the Cursillo Movement ~ from the October 2010 National Cursillo Newsletter

When we speak about the intended purpose of the Cursillo Movement, we are reminded of the Foundational Charism of the Movement. A Charism is an extraordinary gift of the Holy Spirit, given to a believer for the good of the entire Church. We know that the Foundational Charism of the Cursillos in Christianity was given to the person of Eduardo Bonnín ­ not for Eduardo ­ but for the entire Church. It is a Charism that encourages people to encounter Christ in the normality of their life without abandoning the place where God has placed them, by discovering a Christ who is alive, normal, personal and close to us and to the people in our environments. Eduardo's final illness prevented him from finishing his "Spiritual Testament". Therefore, it is open-ended. Each Cursillista is called to be the conclusion, by living the Foundational Charism. We are not called to update, distort, nor make our personal adaptations to the Charism, but to be faithful stewards of this gift. Eduardo included a chapter in My Spiritual Testament titled, Warning to Seafarers. "The reason for this warning to seafarers ­ [is] so that they may be faithful to the goal the Cursillos are after and for which they were devised, designed, prayed for and structured ­ [the reason for the warning] is that it has been proven that from their inception in 1944, more than a few times ­ I wish to believe with good intention ­ they have been skimmed, deactivated, abducted or nipped in the bud of their nature and effectiveness, undoubtedly by people of goodwill and perhaps even believing that in so doing they were making a gift to God and to Cursillo......." To learn more and read the rest of this article, please go to:


The Cursillo Movement is God's gift to us, the Church.

By Maureen Cure, Post Cursillo Chair The Cursillo Movement is God's gift to us, the Church. The spirit gave us this movement with its method.* We are carrying on the mission of Christ, which is the

mission of the church. We carry on the mission through our love, our friendship, and charity, which each one of us has the capacity to give. Being charitable is to be kind and forgiving. In Group Reunion and Ultreya, we encounter how

each of us sees the love of God in our daily life. The more we love God in this life, the more we love as persons. Friendship with Christ and others is the basis for renewal in Post Cursillo, and we have a great method in Group Reunion and Ultreya. * National Mailing, Oct 2010


How Do I Spend an Hour in Adoration? By Michele Fenstermaker

As I discussed in my previous article on Eucharistic Adoration, Jesus, in the Par Excellence form of the Eucharist, is our God's most tangible presence in our world. The Eucharist is God's greatest gift to us, and as faithful Catholics, we need to be grounded in it. Eucharistic Adoration, praying before our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, becomes a way to enrich our participation in that Eucharistic Celebration which is Mass. So how do I, in a tangible way, spend an hour in Adoration? The first and most important step is simply to show up. By that, I mean find an Adoration Chapel and stop in for a visit. There is no right or wrong way to spend time with Jesus; it is a personal relationship which should meet your individual needs. What I will offer here and in our next newsletter, are merely suggestions of things you can do to get you started. 1. Select a Scripture passage and meditate on it. Sit quietly and collect yourself, trying to rid your mind of outside concerns. This may be difficult at first, but will become easier with practice. If outside thoughts enter your mind, acknowledge them then let them go. Ruminating on them will only allow them to become a distraction. Open the passage and read it slowly. Stop on any word or phrase that catches your attention. God is speaking to you. When you finish the reading, allow time for it to become part of you. What is God saying to me? How should this affect my day, __________________________________________________________ week, and life? Don't be too hard on yourself to come away with concrete answers to these questions; you will be given what is needed at the appropriate time. Repeat the steps above. Meditate on the passage again. Ask for the Grace to hear and know what God wants you to hear and know. 2. Pray known prayers such as the rosary. 3. Offer prayers of adoration and praise, confession, forgiveness, petition (trusting intercession) and thanksgiving. I continue to share this experience with my Cursillista friends during our Adoration hour from 6-7PM on Sunday nights at my home parish of St. Catherine of Siena in Moscow. There is an open invitation to all Cursillistas to come and join us for that silent hour of prayer in front of the Eucharist. Come and be ready for a life altering experience! Adoration of the Blessed Sacrament important daily practice and becomes an inexhaustible source of holiness.... It is pleasant to spend time with (Christ), to lie close to his breast like the Beloved Disciple and to feel the infinite love present in his heart. ~Pope John Paul II in The Church and the Eucharist

Who Will Bring Jesus to Your Neighbor?

By Maria Kocsis

groups, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, Korean and Vietnamese, to meet and discuss problems, achievements, and the three phases of Cursillo: Pre-Cursillo, Cursillo and Post Cursillo.

Who will bring Jesus to your neighbor, was meant to challenge those in attendance to rely on true, authentic, personal contact when witnessing to Christ in their lives, in their everyday environments. The rollos focused on the roles of leaders in Cursillo and the spirituality of leaders in Cursillo. Our leadership must spring from a love of Christ and a love of neighbor, that same Christ who created us, died for us, and offers His life for us. We must have the conviction that nothing else is more important. We must develop a yearning to bring all to know Christ and to grow in His love. We should do all of this through daily personal contact with those God places in our

lives on a daily basis. This type of personal contact is covered thoroughly in the Leaders Manual and Structure of Ideas, among other Cursillo literature. The final talk on the weekend was presented by the Region 2 coordinator and he gave a rollo titled Dangers and Deviations. He actually gave this same talk in Kansas City this summer at the National Convention. It was an inspiring presentation on how we are all tempted to make the three day weekend what we think it should be, adding little nuances to give it our personal touch. He talked about the dangers on veering away from authentic (continued on page 5)

Rollos are presented by members of the Who will bring Jesus to service team, both lay your neighbor? This was the and clerical, followed theme of the Fall Region II by in depth discussions Cursillo Encounter. The of the subject matter meeting was held at the presented. In addition to Pope John Paul II Retreat prayer, meditation and Center in Vineland NJ, Mass, the participants October 8-10. enjoy fellowship, new friendships and spiritual There are two region renewal. The encounter encounters every year, one in is geared toward Cursillo the spring and one in the fall. leadership and lay The region encounters are an directors from all opportunity for cursillistas from dioceses are urged to Virginia, Maryland, New attend. Jersey, Delaware and Pennsylvania, in all language The theme this Fall,



G.K. Chesterton and the Christian Ideal

By Tim McKeon

The first rollo we hear as candidates during our Cursillo weekend, is about the Christian Ideal. A Cursillista is asked to consider what actually motivates him or her, and urges the Cursillista to conform himself to our Christian ideal: Christ Jesus. G.K. Chesterton states: "What's wrong with the world is that we do not ask what is right." G.K. Chesterton's book, What's Wrong With the World, was the inspiration for this year's Chesterton conference organized by the American Chesterton Society. My wife Amy and I traveled to the campus of Mount St. Mary's University in scenic Emmitsburg, MD this summer to attend the conference. A pilgrimage to this great Catholic University and the nearby shrine to St. Elizabeth Ann Seton is well worth the short trip and the conference, with its outstanding lineup of speakers exceeded all of our expectations. Among others the conference featured familiar EWTN personalities and Chesterton scholars Dale Ahlquist and Joseph Pearce, "futurist" David Zach, independent journalist James O'Keefe (who exposed ACORN), distributist Robert Aleman, and a performance by the "Theater of the Living Word". In 1910, when he wrote What's Wrong With the World, G.K. Chesterton exposed the modern's world's god: progressivism. Since progress is relative, it can't be an end. According to Joseph Pearce, when progress becomes our god, we stop thinking about our purpose, and without purpose, we have no authentic ideals. Even though the topics of the discussions were what is wrong, what was right was obvious ­ the conference and its attendees. We encountered a gathering of wonderful men and women espousing the Christian ideal who are willing to act by speaking out against today's evils and proposing a new way of living. Outside of the Cursillo community, it often seems like we are the only ones who think and believe as we do, but it is refreshing to come into contact with many others who are so similar in beliefs and perceptions. We are planning on traveling to St. Louis next year for the 2011 Chesterton conference; maybe you can come and join us! For more information on G.K Chesterton or the annual Chesterton conference, visit the website of the American Chesterton Society:

"What's wrong with the world is that we do not ask what is right."

Finances and Fundraising

Thanks to all who have responded to our past appeals for donations! Thanks also to all of you who have paid more than the cost of the weekend you attended or served on team! In order to keep ourselves in a financially stable position to continue our work, please consider regular contributions to the Scranton Cursillo movement. You can send your donation to our treasurer, Cindy Hogan, or drop it off at any of the Ultreyas or School of Leaders. Thank You!

G.K. Chesterton

Cindy Hogan 125 Cornelia Street Pittston, PA 18640

I am only one; but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; I will not refuse to do the something I can do. ~ Helen Keller

De Colores!


The Feast of St. Andrew ~ November 30th

The feast of Saint Andrew invites us to ponder his response to Christ's call: "Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men. At once they left their nets..." (Matthew 4:19-20). With his brother Peter, Andrew immediately left his fishing nets to catch souls for the Kingdom. Are we hesitating to respond to Christ this Advent because we are waiting for just the right moment, those perfect circumstances that will allow us to be just as quick as Andrew? Sadly, we may discover that while we were waiting for that illusive moment, we failed to be attentive to the here and now invitations of everyday life, missing opportunities to respond with the generosity of a true follower of Christ." ~ Priscilla Marck

The Magnificat Advent Collection

Don't Forget to Thank Him (continued from Page 1)

"Are we hesitating to respond to Christ this Advent because we are waiting for just the right moment...?"

On Sunday, November 14th, the first Reunion Ultreya was held for the team, new Cursillistas, and their sponsors at Our Lady of the Snows Church in Clarks Summit. After the Ultreya, everyone attended the 51st Men's Closing at St. Gabe's. All but 3 team members were present, and three quarters of the candidates came, as well as several sponsors. This can only be counted as a success for God and Cursillo. I continue to thank God for His answers, but particularly for His answers to the prayers for a blessed weekend! De Colores! By Natalie Kocsis

Who Will Bring Jesus to Your Neighbor? (continued from page 3)

appears to be a good catholic and sign them up for a weekend. He talked about movements who strayed from school of leaders and other essential Cursillo methodology. All in all the weekend was spiritually and educationally intoxicating. There is such hope for our world with so many Christ minded Christians living their faith for all to see! God Bless and De Colores! By Maria Kocsis

You shall love your neighbor as yourself ~ Matthew 22:39

sponsorship through make a friend, be a friend, bring a friend to Christ, to find who



Scranton Cursillo ATTN: Donna Valenti 106 Exeter Avenue West Pittston, PA 18643 Phone (570) 885-5432 E-mail [email protected]

Upcoming Events !

58th Women's Cursillo: March 17 ­ 20, 2011 Ann Hopkins, Rectora 52nd Men's Cursillo March 31 ­ April 3, 2011 Jim Scoblick, Rector School of Leaders December 18, 2010 St. Gabriel's Clarks Summit January 8, 2011 St Gabriel's, Clarks Summit Rector/Rectora Retreat January 22, 2011 St. Mary's Church, Avoca Ultreya: December 12, 2010 St Vincent de Paul Church, Dingmans Ferry Grouping Group Reunions are happening all over the Diocese. If you are having trouble finding a group, please attend an Ultreya or School of Leaders for info. Check out our website for other important dates and directions to our events!

About Our Movement

Go therefore, and Be Messengers of JOY!

~ Pope John Paul II Cursillo (pronounced cur-seeyo) is Spanish for little course, specifically in the teachings of Jesus. The goal of the Cursillo Movement is to make Christ the prime influence in society. Cursillo is often described as a retreat. While there is quiet time and reflection, there is more discussion among peers than in most retreats. Perhaps, it is best described as an experience of living in Christian community. The Cursillo Movement is worldwide. It began in Spain in the mid-1940s and came to the United States in the 1960s. All local dioceses in the US are affiliated with the worldwide Cursillo through the National Cursillo Secretariat in Dallas, Texas. The Cursillo weekend in the Diocese of Scranton begins Thursday evening and ends Sunday evening, and is conducted by a team of priests and lay people. Weekends are held at St. Gabriel's Retreat Center, in Clarks Summit.



We're on the Web! See us at: ScrantonCursillo.homestead. com


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