National Ultreya 2022 - Cursillo England and Wales
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National Ultreya 2022

Category: News

On Saturday 24th September 2022, Cursillo held a day at the Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral of Christ the King to commemorate 50 years of the Cursillo Movement in England & Wales. The Cursillo, however, is nearing its 80th year since its origins in Majorca. We were finally able to come together and mark this occasion, as this was delayed from 2020 due to the pandemic. It was really beautiful to be able to hold this Ultreya on the Feast of Our Lady of Walsingham, as this to us symbolises our Lady’s blessing over England and over the Cursillo.

The majority of the day was held in the Gibberd Room, where an exhibition of photographs was set up to see Cursillos life over the years in Liverpool, across different Diocese and even our participation in international events. Bishop Tom Williams, was happy to see the early photographs depicting the first weekends held at Bishop Eton, which he was part of as he was one of the original seminarians, along with Fr Michael Horra, the Burns brothers, the Stillwell Family and Portuguese Cursillistas who brought the Cursillo Movement over to England from Portugal.

Amazingly, we were joined by a Brazilian family who were just travelling through England, for a week who noticed the signs for Cursillo in the Cathedral. It turns out that the dad (on the left) was the president of Cursillos in Brazil and a leader in his local area for over 25 years! How God works!

The day started with a welcome from our National President Joanne Morris. Here, she introduced the theme ‘Reflect, Refresh and Revive’. These words were displayed on the wall along with encouraging quotes by Eduardo Bonnin and from the Fundamental Ideas of the Movement.

The day continued with wonderful talks and witnesses given by Cursillistas Chris Turner, Stephen Fox, Paul Northam and Fr Tony Slingo. These reflections were followed by sharing one’s own witness and experiences of Cursillo. At midday there was Holy Mass celebrated by Bishop Tom Williams and Fr Paulo Jose Damin on the main altar of the Cathedral. Bishop Tom gave an encouraging Homily.

Here, everyone sang waving different coloured flags, in order to represent Cursillos international greeting ‘De Colores’ which is used globally to signify living life in colour and in the fullness of God’s grace.

We sang songs to honour Our Lady during the Mass. It was really beautiful to have Paul sing the Magnificat at the Psalm. We then finished the Mass with a rendition of ‘Mary of Walsingham’ written by Fr Jimmy Collins and sang by Tony Dimick (who also originally put the words to music). It was really powerful!

The day continued with lunch back in the Gibberd room, followed by further reflections and sharing. A really delightful day was had by all! A special thanks to the small team who worked tirelessly to make the day such a success and for all who travelled to join in the day. It was wonderful to be together again, with new and old Cursillistas alike, to share our faith through the wonderful charism of friendship! As Eduardo Bonnin once said ‘The Cursillo is an experience of identity, a hymn to life and a tribute to friendship.’ Please join us in reciting the Cursillo prayer going forward so that while reflecting on the past 50 years, we are then able to refresh and revive in the coming years.