This February our parish had the privilege of hosting two Cursillo weekends. As my pastor and I attended the men’s clausura, I was brought back to my own Cursillo experience two years ago as a seminarian. What an amazing thing to hear how men’s lives have been changed forever thanks to an encounter with Jesus Christ and His Church. As we know, that encounter is made real by the overwhelming outpouring of love that is shown to the retreatants. The love of Jesus Christ has the power to transform the world, if only we allow it to flow through our lives and actions.
In one of the Gospel readings from daily Mass in Lent, Jesus describes the Last Judgment, when God will separate the sheep from the goats. The basis for each man’s verdict is summarized in five words: “YOU DID IT TO ME.” When we gave a drink to the thirsty, we did it to Him. When we failed to show love to our neighbor, we failed to do it to Him. Everything we do in life is counted as if done directly to God.
I want to encourage all of you who volunteer your time and resources for the sake of Cursillo. Remember always that it is not merely for the sake of “paying it forward” that you do what you do. It is not merely to share the wonderful experience of fraternity and love that you received from your first Cursillo with a new generation of men and women. When you make sacrifices to serve retreatants on their first Cursillo, you are doing it for love of Jesus. That is the primary reason why Cursillo is so effective, and why your sacrifices have an eternal impact.
As Cursillo continues to touch lives, may Jesus remain at its center, and may all our efforts be devoted to bringing souls into friendship with Him through an active sacramental life in the Catholic Church.
May God continue to bless you! And in all that you do, remember Jesus’ words: You did it to me.
-Fr Paul Haverstock
Parish of Saints Joachim and Anne