Heard about us on Domestic Church Media?
For more information about Cursillo,
email us at trentoncursillo@gmail.com

Thursday, October 19, 2017

PRAYERS FOR TRENTON 126 CANDIDATES

Please pray for the following candidates for Trenton 126. Team formation is on October 28.

Dean Borurla
Ronald Conners
Philip Lineri
Alton Drake
Martin McMahon*
Matthew McMahon*
Juan Mantilla
Edwin Petruzzi
Jeffrey Schutsky

*Pending Candidate

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

A NOTE FROM MARY ANN DOWD

To all cursillistas who may read this:

I was struck by the tripod I witnessed at the Columbus Day Parade this afternoon.  While so many are trying to tear down our statues and destroy any good which they represent not just of Columbus but so many other heroes who while they may not have been perfect men, are honored for various honorable things they did or traits they possessed.

I was amazed at how on this Columbus day I witnessed our tripod of piety study and action at this year's parade:

PIETY - The parade started with a prayer service at St. Patrick's Cathedral (something I never realized)

STUDY - Thousands of copies of the Constitution of the United States were handed out at the parade.  STUDY what it really says and does NOT say

ACTION - all of the various charitable works of amazing people both Italians and non-Italians alike who give back to this country out of love and gratitude for what they and their ancestors have received.  Maybe God meant the tripod for everyone - not just cursillistas or maybe, with the help of God, everyone can become a Cursillista!

PS: Big shout out for that amazing St. Pio float!!!


Monday, September 18, 2017

INSTALLATION ARTICLE PUBLISHED ON MONITOR ONLINE


An article about our recent Cursillo installation "Prayer Key Lesson as Trenton Cursillo Movement Installs New Officers" can be found at the Trenton Monitor website at this link.


A Photo Gallery of 20 pictures from the Mass can be found at this link.

Monday, September 11, 2017

INSTALLATION WITNESS BY MARY WEIS, LAY DIRECTOR

Wow! I’m really surprised! Looking around I realize no one has left yet. I guess that’s the reason why we don’t serve the cake until the end. Well, get ready, you’re in for it!
Let’s pray together: O Lord our God, you have called all those who bear the mane of your Son to serve one another and the world around us by the works of faith and love. Renew our zeal for the tasks you have given us, that we may serve the coming of your kingdom, through the same Christ our Lord. Amen.
Here I am! And I have big shoes to fill, big shoes. Rick Klarmann has done such a tremendous job serving as lay director these past two years, it’s just incredible. We had several weekends and have expanded our horizons. We were published in The Monitor and we have been on the radio! We have funded two weekends and looking to do a third. What accomplishments! Applaud.
When I first got to work with Rick I found him to be a teacher, coach, guide, supporter, true friend. I also knew him as holy, gentle, kind, understanding and loving. We worked so well together, I would tell Rick we were like bread and butter, peanut butter and jelly. And it didn’t matter who was the peanut butter, we just melded. I could not have picked a better lay director and a better person to work with. Being Rick, he would tell it like it is but in his own gentle, kind way. I still remember asking him what I would do at School of Leaders if a speaker didn’t show up and he said simply, “You go to plan B.” I asked him what was plan B. He said, “You are plan B.” That’s when I realized I needed to have a backup in my back pocket just in case. And sure enough, it happened. And we got through it, together. Thank you, Rick, for that.
I am also so grateful to Rick for all the prayers and the 59 day novena said over the last few weeks for me and secretariat. What a beautiful, prayerful, loving gift! What could be more cherished? What could be better than prayer? Thank you, Rick, for that, too.
Rick, you are an incredible individual but an even better Catholic, an awesome cursillista. I can only hope to continue the ministry and to be as devoted, caring, hopeful and energetic as you have been. All of us here are grateful and thank you for your service. Applaud.
But time moves on and here I am. What a journey it has been for me! Twenty years s it has been since I made my weekend, yes, it was 1997. Did I think then for one second I would be up here today? No, not at all.
Since that time, I have experienced many changes, many joys, sorrows, too. I have made friends and lost them. I have expanded my family while leaving others behind. I have felt truly blessed and I have felt discouraged, hopeful and frustrated, love and sadness.
All of these emotions are experienced by everyone sometime in their lives so I can’t really say I had an extraordinary past twenty years. But my reactions, my responses, my attitudes, to these moments I had in my life were different; they were unusual, they were extraordinary, all because of Cursillo. Cursillo, you say, made the difference? Why would a three day weekend and a few meetings with fellow Cursillo friends make that much of a difference? But it did!
Because of Cursillo, I was closer to Christ than ever before, knowing what my life on earth is meant to do. I had purpose, and I had understanding. I knew what God had called for me to do: to act like Him as best as I could and to spread the work of Him who sent to me so that we all may profit from His love.
It was different because I not only knew what God wanted from me; I was willing to give it. I was surrounded by people that didn’t abandon you at the first sign of adversity, that didn’t say let’s get together but never do, that say if you need anything ask, but are not available. I was now part of a group that made a difference, got involved, helped each other, worked together, prayed for each other and truly loved one another unconditionally.
Because of Cursillo, I was able to handle drastic changes in my life: sickness, work, loss of family, all with an attitude that it is Christ’s will and He will get you through it. I felt safe, secure and loved. This was evident in the responses I received from my cursillistas. In Cursillo, you are never alone. Cursillistas are like angels that come to help you, attend to you and comfort you in your time of need. And they never give up, they never stop caring.
Because of Cursillo I felt a greater joy than ever when I was blessed: retirement, new house, health and grandchildren. I felt so privileged, so joyous that God would give me so much in so many ways. The joys stayed in my heart and they were shared with fellow cursillistas who were not jealous or envious but so happy to see good things happen. The joys became infectious and lasted long after the events became the norm.
Because of Cursillo I experience life differently. I am aware of my surroundings. I am amazed at God’s work in everything I see. I share along with my fellow cursillistas their trials and hopes and successes and I rejoice in their lives, knowing that God has his hand in everything. I have a new appreciation for the surprise of each new day and how can it bring me closer to God. I reflect often on my fellow cursillistas and how they are coping with their tasks and I pray to God for them.
In this, another milestone in my life, I can only ask as Pope Francis did, to pray for me. May I be your worthy servant in this task that I am truly blessed, honored and privileged to accept.
This short article from author Jeannie Ewing sums up how I feel as the Cursillo Lay Director:
In the spring, a female robin began building her nest on our neighbor’s porch, within view from our kitchen. My husband, two daughters, and I followed this little bird’s journey into motherhood as she patiently and diligently sat on her nest for weeks without much respite. Finally, her eggs hatched, and the full-time feeding frenzy began.
My oldest daughter, Felicity, squealed in delight as the fluffy baby robins stretched their necks and opened their beaks for food. Mama and Daddy robin were rotating the feeding schedule, and we were privy to the details that God provided for us.
Within two weeks, the four young robins, spotted and red-breasted, seemed eager to fly. They practiced flapping their wings, and the girls and I were certain on a few occasions that we’d witness their departure from the nest. Suddenly, the birds were gone, and we’d missed the entire pivotal moment.
Later that day, I saw a quote that reminded me of the family of robins. “What if I fall?” Oh, dearest, but what if you fly?” The robin family reminded me of my own vocation to motherhood – waiting, learning, changing, and letting go.
Everything in our lives has the potential to evoke fear or hope in us. We may fall, but we may fly. What we risk by trusting God during the growth spurts of life is what we gain in heaven. If we don’t step into the unknown and risk failure, we will never know if we can fly. Don’t be afraid to fly.


So how do I feel now? I’m ready to fly. Are you with me? De Colores!

Saturday, September 9, 2017

PICTURES FROM THE INSTALLATION 9.8.17


A beautiful treat for all!


Our new Lay Director, Mary Weis


Our new Past Lay Director, Rick Klarmann


Mary Weis and new Assistant Lay Director,
Kathy Tucker


Mary and Rick


Past Lay Directors - September, 2017
Front Row: 
Mary Weis, Ronnie Martella, Mary Ann Dowd, 

Middle Row:
John DiStefano, Rick Klarmann, Pat Martucci, 
Cynthia Diamond, John Cifordella

Back Row: 
Len Capobianco, Al Martella, 
Dick Hemler, Dick Andrejack, Bill Grippo

FROM SISTER CLARA SCHROEDER, CSJP

"I’m forwarding the latest news from our Sr. Ann Crawley in Haiti that was sent to Sr. Sheila, our Congregation Leader, that I’m requesting you to send out on the Prayer Tree.  There are also photos attached. Please thank the Cursillo Community for all their PRAYERS. Many thanks, Sr. Clara

Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace

Pursuing justice, we seek God's gift of peace.
September 8, 2017

Dear Clara,  

Thanks, all, for your prayers.  This email arrived from Sister Ann today along with some photos below.


Sheila, your prayers have been answered; we have weathered the storm and have come through safely though exhausted.  Thanks too for the prayers and support of all our Sisters, Associates and Friends. Our people of Haiti are fine. They have lost crops and many houses are in ruins but they are alive and well and that's what matters.  


Thanks be to God for our newly built houses which gave protection and shelter to many poor families. I have been visiting with families this morning bringing  food packs  which contain all the essential nutrients and vitamins . All were absolutely delighted all to get the food which can be prepared in minutes!  My band of helpers aided in the distribution to about 1000 families.


Sheila, once more thank you for your prayers and support at this critical time and for the prayers  of our many friends and Associates.  


God bless all. Ann

Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace, 399 Hudson Terrace, Englewood Cliffs, NJ 07632

Some photos taken this morning.   Houses in ruins after the storms. Fallen banana trees which these people depend on for food.  Distribution of food packs.








Friday, September 8, 2017

CHAMPION FOR LIFE DINNER

Adelaide Sangiorgi invites all to attend the Champion for Life Dinner to honor Deacon Ed. Jennings at 5pm at Doolan’s Shore Club (700 State Highway 71, Spring Lake, NJ 07762). Deacon Ed Jennings will be honored as the group’s “Champion for Life.” There will be a Cursillo table there. In order to attend, you must complete a request form. The form can be downloaded at this link. IMPORTANT: Please write on their reservation “Add me to the Cursillo table with Adelaide Sangiorgi”

Sunday, August 27, 2017

SCHOOL OF LEADERS by MARY WEIS, ASSISTANT LAY DIRECTOR

Our August School of Leaders was such a fitting end to summer. It included two talks on evangelization but from two different perspectives:

Father Jay Bowden gave us a synopsis of his trip to EWTN and a history of Mother Angelica's quest for spreading the Word through mass media; Al Martella recounted the diocese Evangelization Day and its emphasis on personal Catholic commitment, leading by example, while bridging the gaps between different ministries. 


What a thoughtful and inspiring day to start us all on the work that lies ahead for us cursillistas.


May our weekends be full. Wouldn't you like to sponsor someone?


Thanks, Mary

Friday, August 25, 2017

TRENTON CURSILLO ON DOMESTIC CHURCH MEDIA

On Wednesday, August 23, Deacon Tony Martucci and Al Martella were interviewed about Cursillo on Domestic Church Media's "TGI Friday Live" program. Conducting the interview was Jim Manfredonia and Gabriella Furmato of Domestic Church Media. (If you listen, you can hear Mary Weis, Ronnie Martella and Father Jay Bowden praying in the background!)

Thank you, Jim and Gabriella and Domestic Church Media, for your hospitality
and all the work you do for God!











Monday, August 7, 2017

MESSAGE FROM RICK KLARMANN, LAY DIRECTOR

Dear Brothers & Sisters in Christ,

When we (Secretariat) reached out to you trying to raise money to defray the costs of the upcoming weekends, I should have explained why we asked for money last year and are asking again this year.  The short answer is we receive less money than we pay out.  Secretariat strives to use your gifts to the best of our ability; here are a few examples of what your donations were used for:

  • Defraying the cost of the Weekend
  • Weekend supplies, books, Bibles, pens, pencils, etc.
  • Annual dues to National Cursillo and Region 2
  • Annual donation to Epiphany
  • Coffee, tea, and rolls at School of Leaders
  • Other charitable giving
We still have some funds available but we are a long way from reaching our goal of $4000 in order to defray the cost of the weekend.  I believe we will reach our goal with your help.  Please pray about it and give what you can, when you can.  You can give your gift at the upcoming School of Leaders, the Diocesan Mass (September 8th) or via mail to:

Mary Weis
20 Silver Maple Lane
Howell, NJ 07731

Thank you all for your continued prayer and support for our movement. God will take everything you give--your time, your talent, and your prayer--and multiply it.  God bless.

Rick

Sunday, August 6, 2017

A REFLECTION FROM DEACON TONY MARTUCCI

Our readings today give us an amazing and almost fantastic picture of Christ and His Father. In our first reading from Daniel, we see Daniel’s vision of God the Father on His throne, with Christ  coming on a cloud. Daniel is seeing with the eyes of faith. He is not actually in heaven seeing God, but the Holy Spirit of God has given him this vision to share with us

Our Gospel reading from Matthew shows us Peter, James and John on top of Mount Tabor speaking with Jesus about their journey to Jerusalem when Christ suddenly shines like the sun and is then joined by Moses, the great Lawgiver and Elijah, the prophet. The disciples overheard the converstion about Christ’s upcoming passion and death. Peter is so overcome that he wants to stay there on the top of Mount Tabor. When they hear the voice of God the Father, the disciples fall down in fear. Looking up, they see only Jesus as He was before the transfiguration. This was NOT a VISION. They actually saw this with their own eyes. I suppose that this would have had a deep, long-lasting effect on their faith lives. Yet, when Christ’s arrest, passion and crucifixion came, all of the Apostles fled, except John who witnessed the Crucifixion along with Mary and some of the women who had accompanied them.


The Apostles went into hiding even after Easter, until they had received the Holy Spirit at Pentecost Then they become bold and fearless. They preached the message that Jesus had given them. They travelled through many parts of the world, sharing the Good News of Christ: the Love and mercy of God, and the invitation to enter the Kingdom of God. All of them suffered martyrdom for their faith, except John, who survived his torture and was exiled to the island of Patmos for the remainder of his life.


Now, let me ask you: if you were able to witness this great event of the Transfiguration, would your life be changed? Would you do or say things differently?


Every weekend we come to Mass. We hear the scriptures tell us of the stories of our ancestors and of the life of Christ. We are instructed on church doctrine and the truths of our faith. We worship God together in song and prayer. Then the gifts of bread and wine are brought to the altar and we witness a miracle occur right before our eyes. As Father recites the words of consecration, the same words spoken by Christ at the Last Supper, the bread and wine  transform into the body and , soul and divinity of the Risen, Living Jesus Christ. We don’t see the change. We can’t taste the change but our faith, and Christ Himself, tell us it is so.


Does this make a difference in how we live, act and speak? Are we as awed and amazed as the Apostles were on Mount Tabor?


Sadly, I know many people who come here to Mass on Sunday, out of habit. They say they are “bored”. It is the same thing week after week. Would they also be bored watching the Home Run Challenge and seeing Aaron Judge hit homerun after homerun?


Some people come to receive Christ casually walking as though they were picking up movie tickets at the box office. A few receive the Eucharist and walk directly to their cars to avoid the traffic out of the parking lot. Some leave before the final blessing. Some take time after communion, to speak with Jesus in prayer, thanking Him for His love and grace. They leave the Church different from when they entered. Hopefully they bring Christ with them into their homes, neighborhoods, schools or workplaces.


There s a beautiful song in our hymnals that my musc group used to sing when we led the music for Mass in our last parish. The refrain was:


“Look beyond the bread you eat

See your Savior and your Lord;
Look beyond the cup you drink
See His love poured out as blood.”

My brothers and sisters, we have been given a great gift, a miracle. May the grace of God fill us with awe and wonder. May we be changed and challenged by who we receive today and at every Mass.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

A NOTE FROM RICK KLARMANN, LAY DIRECTOR

To all my Cursillo Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

First of all thank you for your prayers.  I know it has made a huge difference in that the pain is less and I have been able to hold off any major surgery on my back or neck.  God is good.

It's been a blessing to be Lay Director over the last two years. It's time for a new start.  Mary Weis and the new Secretariat need your prayers and support. Please join us on Friday, September 8th at St. William the Abbott for Mary's installation.

We have two weekends tentatively scheduled - in December and February.  If there are men or women whom you have been praying for and you believe would benefit from the Cursillo method please invite them. So please give your applications to any one from Secretariat as soon as possible.  We need to plan for the weekend and form the team(s).

Also, We still need to raise enough funds to defray the expense at San Alfonso.  We have set an ambitious goal of $4000 which is about one-third of the cost of the weekend for team and candidates.  Those funds also enable anyone regardless of their means to make their weekend and begin their Fourth Day.  Please help us in any way you can.

Thank you all for all you do.  God will take whatever you do and multiply it 20, 50, a 100-fold.

God bless, Rick

 

Thursday, July 6, 2017

A NOTE FROM RICK KLARMANN, LAY DIRECTOR

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

You can watch the news and easily become discouraged when bombarded by all of the bad things going on in the US or in the world.  When things aren’t going well, it is easy to become discouraged.  When we don’t feel well, when the aches and pains of daily living weigh us down; when the cares and needs of family and friends is almost more than we can bear, it can be difficult to see God at work in our lives.  But He is.  He is right there in the midst of the muck and pain and it is He who sustains us through it all.  Therefore, we must turn our thoughts and prayers to the God of the Universe; the God who loves us more than we love ourselves, more than we can fathom or deserve.  We turn to Him because we know that without Him we can do nothing of value. 

As I previously wrote, we have an opportunity for a weekend in December and possibly another weekend early next year.  But the weekends will not happen without you.  We need your prayers and we need your talents.
  • Sponsors who are praying and fasting for their friends; in order that their friends may hear the Holy Spirit calling them to a new and deeper relationship
  • Candidates hear the Lord calling them to something more and who after prayer and discernment want to learn more about and begin to live the Cursillo method
  • Teams of men and women who believe in and are living the Cursillo method in the various environments they find themselves and who will lovingly share their gifts and talents
Typically, a Novena to the Holy Spirit is prayed just prior to Pentecost. In some ways we need another Pentecost.  We need to be fired up by the Holy Spirit to do great things.  We need the power and gifts of the Holy Spirit so that we, the Cursillo Movement in the Diocese of Trenton can lovingly spread the Good News of the Gospel.  Our Blessed Mother, the Apostles, and other disciples spent time in prayer—waiting to be clothed with power from on high—the Holy Spirit.  Once they received the Holy Spirit they were able to do great things for the Lord.  Please join Secretariat and the Cursillo Community of the Diocese of Trenton in praying the Novena to the Holy Spirit beginning today and ending Friday July 14th

Please pray the following intention (as well as any intention you may have):

Holy Spirit, third Person of the Blessed Trinity, Spirit of Truth, Love, and Holiness, proceeding from the Father and the Son, and equal to Them in all things, I adore You and love You with all my heart.

Holy Spirit, confiding in Your deep, personal love for me, I am making this novena for the following request, if it should be Your Holy Will to grant it.  To inspire men and women in our community to willingly and lovingly share their gifts and talents as sponsors and leaders for the benefit of the God’s Kingdom.  And that men and women open their hearts to your call to a deeper relationship with them through the Cursillo method.

Teach me, Divine Spirit, to know and seek my last end; grant me the holy fear of God; grant me true contrition and patience.  Do not let me fall into sin.  Give me an increase of faith, hope, and charity, and bring forth in my soul all the virtues proper to my state of life.

Make me a faithful disciple of Jesus and an obedient child of the Church. Give me efficacious grace sufficient to keep the commandments and to receive the sacraments worthily.  Give me the four Cardinal Virtues, Your Seven Gifts, Your Twelve Fruits.  Raise me to perfection in the state of life to which You have called me and lead me through a happy death to everlasting life.  Through Christ our Lord. Amen.

We will remind everyone to pray the Novena with us today and each day of the Novena.  Then, we will conclude our Novena with a special prayer at School of Leaders on Saturday July 15th after the 9AM Mass at Epiphany in Brick.

God bless and please pray with us
Rick Klarmann

Monday, July 3, 2017

MONITOR ARTICLE ABOUT 2017 DIOCESE OF TRENTON EVANGELIZATION DAY

This week's Monitor included an article and pictures about
the Diocese of Trenton Evangelization Day, held on June 24th,
which includes a quote from Ronnie Martella. It can be found at this link.


Sunday, June 25, 2017

trentonCURSILLO AT THE 2017 DIOCESE OF TRENTON EVANGELIZATION DAY


From left to right: George Weis, Mary Ann Dowd, Pat Burke, Mary Weis, 
Bob Burke, Marie Garrett, Bob Morris, Ronnie Martella, Al Martella
Not Pictured: John and Gabrielle Toman

Monday, June 19, 2017

SCHOOL OF LEADERS by MARY WEIS, ASSISTANT LAY DIRECTOR

Our recent School of Leaders included prayers and recognition for Fathers Day and two enlightening talks by two dynamic speakers.

Sister Clara spoke of the many forms of prayer (28) and their unifying factor that will make us remain steadfast in our faith. Sister emphasized humility, attention and silence as key elements to prayer. "God speaks in silence to a listening heart." Most importantly is perseverance in prayer, looking through the pain to see the joy, to hear God's word, and know that prayer is a gift.


We also heard from our past Lay Director, Ronnie Martella, about Group Reunion, an ongoing encounter with our self, in order to live a life fundamental in Christ and fill the "God-size hole in each of us" as Matthew Kelly says. We must be active in our movable square meter in order to accept and live God's plan for us, incorporating the fundamentals of piety, study and action to center our lives in God.


  • Pay attention
  • Be astonished
  • Tell about it

"All is a gift, and the only appropriate response is gratitude."

Group reunion raises us to a transcendental level. Keep it going!! Practice regularly!!


See you at the next School Of Leaders on Saturday, July 15.

Friday, June 16, 2017

FOR YOUR ACTION - A WITNESS by PAT BURKE

(Shared at the June 7 Diocesan Mass)

We just celebrated Pentecost Sunday…..a few weeks before our Grandson - Logan made his Confirmation I never saw him so nervous to receive the Holy Spirit and we have all heard Pope Francis keep encouraging us to take the Holy Spirit seriously and that we need the power of the HOLY SPIRIT- IN ORDER TO  EVANGELIZE!!


How would we change!


WE IN THE TRENTON DIOCESE HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO ATTEND A CONFERENCE ON EVANGELIZATION ON June 24 at St. David the King Church in Princeton Junction. Well isn’t that WHAT Cursillo is all about?  EVANGELIZING….. Bringing CHRIST INTO OUR ENVIRONMENTS.   With Piety, Study of our Environments and the Holy Spirit leading our Actions.


Recently I had a few experiences in doing exactly that – that was not in my plan for the day or week.  My time has been nothing but chaotic, at our age to be selling our home of 30 years and having only 6 weeks to find a home and to pack all our belongings – buy life goes on.  The only plan I had was to Pack and find a new place to live. 


A PLAN


We make plans and God laughs…. The buyers for our home backed out  after the Inspection report which was loaded with lots of miss-information and outright lies about our home and property that he reported 11 days prior to closing on the homes and moving.  


But in God’s Plan - Our oldest daughter scheduled surgery on both her eyes and asked me to take her to the surgical office and wait for her – Not in my plan that day I was going to do more packing and organizing. Now the office called and asked if we could come in earlier and when we arrived an hour earlier a patient came in and was 91 years old and had to have immediate surgery on her face.  So we sat and sat and sat and waited for two hours.  Finally, she goes in and now I wait and wait – not my plan… Another patient came in and her friend was going in for surgery.  We started up a conversation as the Holy Spirit would have us. She said it is so hard to just sit and wait then notices the cross I had on and asked about it.  I HAD ON MY Cursillo cross – as we talked in that waiting-room she shared that she is from St. Mary’s in Colts Neck and runs a program there.  I SHARED ABOUT CURSILLO – she stated she did not know Cursillo was still having weekends, and thought it died out. She shared her parents made a weekend years ago.  She went on to say she finds it hard to evangelize to people not in the Church.  Of course - I explained what Cursillo was.  I have her name and number and she is interested in making a weekend.  An application went out to her. Not my plan for the day but I left that office knowing why God had me 

sit there all that time.

That week I went into Ulta, you girls know that place.  Makeup and perfume and hair products.  I went to the makeup counter and a gal was ringing me up and she noticed my pin.  My Associate Mercy pin and told me since she moved to Hazlet she lost contact and would like to get involved again.  We exchanged phone numbers and she would like to get reactive with the Sisters and a Christian Community.  So I HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO WITNESS AND EVANGELIZE AGAIN – Not my plan!  Not with Bob sitting in the car waiting for me in-patiently as I was just running in for one item.


Now let’s talk about the electronic age and how that played into evangelizing recently.  While reading a FACEBOOK MESSAGE A GAL I DID NOT KNOW BUT WAS A FRIEND OF A FRIEND – COMMENTED ON WHAT I WROTE, and asked if I would befriend her.  I WENT INTO HER  ACCOUNT TO SEE WHO SHE WAS FRIENDS WITH… SHE WAS A FRIEND OF A MERCY SISTER – SR. JUDY…SO I BEFRIENDED HER AND ASKED HOW SHE KNEW Sr. Judy.  She explained that she graduated Mercy Academy in Watchung.  I had the opportunity to ask if she ever thought about being an Associate to the Sisters.  Not my plan ….  God working through the Holy Spirit.  Now I have a new friend to invite to the Orientation program of Mercy Associates and also Cursillo.


When I retired from my practice, our Priest ASKED if I would run the new Maturing Adult group, that was starting up in our parish.  I prayed and said yes.  So for five years Bob and I organized the group once a month and talked about Cursillo and Gennesaret asking if anyone would be interested in possibly attending either one.  No takers!   It appeared to be an apostolic failure.  One of the gals used a walker and would often come late after making

her famous Irish Soda Bread, or sometime could not make it if bad  weather.  I really felt drawn to EILEEN AND WE EXCHANGED E-MAILS. She recently moved into a senior housing and I had time to go see her and go to lunch, as we were now not moving June 1st.  As we were having lunch Janet Moscuzza came in and joined us.  As we shared Eileen told us she was a Cursiesta and made her weekend in New York years ago.  I knew why I loved her! She was just such a Christ centered women, always offering something positive to a conversation or discussion.  

What I WOULD like to leave you with is what I learned these past three weeks.  


Evangelizing:

1. Wear a piece of jewelry that identifies what you are about. People notice.
2. Strike up a conversation.  Remember:  “Make a friend, be a friend and bring that friend to Christ”
3. I would add bring God into every conversation.  I heard a Cursiessta say recently “Oh I never say God Bless You because some people are offended.”  Please always say God Bless you, not just when someone sneezes but on the phone when you are saying good bye , or when leaving a friend
or family member.
4. Make sure your smiling – it is an welcoming sign of friendship and an invitation to conversation. 

In closing keep in mind you are never too young or too old to sharpen your skills on Evangelizing.  So make a Date and come out on June 24. Now go out and be disciples!  Oh what an awesome God we have! De Colores!


Monday, May 22, 2017

A NOTE FROM RICK KLARMANN, LAY DIRECTOR

Dear Cursillo Community,
 
I hope and pray that everyone is enjoying the spring weather (although a little colder than normal).  It has been a busy start of 2017.  We ended 2016 with Trenton #124 and began 2017 with Trenton #125.  What a blessing both weekends have been. 

After two successful Cursillo weekends we are planning for another weekend in December.  The next weekend is tentatively scheduled for December 7-10, at San Alfonso Retreat House in Long Branch, New Jersey.Address: 755 Ocean Ave, Long Branch, NJ 07740.

We realize this is close to Christmas but it was the weekend that was available at San Alfonso.  We (Secretariat) have not determined whether this will be a Men’s or a Woman’s weekend; Secretariat will make that determination within in the next few months based on the number of applications for either a Men’s or Woman’s weekend.  Getting applications to Pat and Bob Burke (Pre-Cursillo) as soon as possible to help us make the best decision. 

Additionally, it is our prayer that we will be able to have another weekend in 2018 but we are still exploring that option. Once a tentative date is available, we will let everyone know when and where. 

Last year, Secretariat reached out to community to help defray the cost of the weekend.  As we noted, the cost to participate on the weekend has increased but we (Secretariat) believe it important to keep the cost of the weekend affordable for those who will make their weekend as well as team.  Last year, we set a goal of $2000 and raised over $2000; however, we believe we need to double that to keep the cost of two weekends at $200 per person (team and candidate).

First and foremost, please pray for potential candidates, the weekend, and the team, but also pray about whether you are able to help with defraying the cost of the weekend.  If you are called to do so, please make out your checks to "Trenton Cursillo" and write for “Cursillo Weekend”. 
  • You can mail your donations to
             Pat Martucci
             1588 Dee Road
             Forked River, NJ 08731
  • Or you can bring your donation to monthly School of Leaders or put your check in the collection during the June and September Diocesan Masses. 
Each month we will update all of you on our progress in reaching the goal of $4000.  So please give if you can, but more importantly pray for the team and candidates. 

God bless
Rick Klarmann
Lay Director, Trenton Cursillo
 
PS:  I want to thank everyone who have been praying for me.  Your prayers have been invaluable in guiding the surgeon but also in my healing.  The surgery on my hand went well and my hand healing quickly. The strength in my hand is coming back and some of the numbness has improved.  Nerves take a long time to heal so it will be some time before we know whether or not surgery on the neck will still be necessary.  Thank you for your prayers. Prayer works.
 
Your brother in Christ
Rick Klarmann
 

ABOUT SCHOOL OF LEADERS by MARY WEIS, ASSISTANT LAY DIRECTOR

For those who were not at the recent School of Leaders, you missed a great opportunity to pay homage to our Lady. After a film about Our Lady of Fatima, we shared experiences, miracles, and answered prayers, when we witnessed to the incredible intercessions of the Blessed Mother that touched our lives in a special way. Everyone was able to write Mary a personal note of thanksgiving, petition, or love and those personal letters will be brought before the altar at our next diocesan mass at Saint Catharine's. We gave Our Lady rose petals, lit candles, and sang songs in her honor. It was a fitting tribute to the mother of our Savior.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

MAY SCHOOL OF LEADERS

Everyone please join us on May 20 for our next School of Leaders when we will pay tribute to our Blessed Lady and commemorate the 100th year anniversary of Our Lady of Fatima. Hope to see everyone there!! Come out to pay homage and gratitude to the mother of the Lord who has done so much for us! Details to the right.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

UPDATE YOUR CURSILLO 2017 CALENDAR


All the dates for upcoming Cursillo Events for 2017
 can be found to the right under
"Upcoming Cursillo Events."
Hope to see you there - and bring a friend!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

DO YOU HAVE A VERIZON.NET EMAIL ADDRESS?

It has been reported that Verizon is retiring their email service. In order to keep receiving prayer messages, if you are affected by this change, please send us your new email address. More details about the change can be found at this link.

Saturday, April 22, 2017

WHAT'S SO HOT ABOUT CURSILLO? by MARY ANN DOWD

(From School of Leaders - April 22, 2017)

Please pray with me in the Name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit Amen.  Lord your people assembled before you this day ask for courage, the courage to live out in our daily lives the faith we profess with our lips.  Amen.

We start today with a question: “What’s so hot about  Cursillo???” It’s  a question someone might ask who is not familiar with our movement  or even after we have lived the blessed three days,  we may  ask ourselves, as some of our friends may; how is Cursillo different  from the many other ministries  within the Church?

Why would I want to make Cursillo my main Christian action and devote my, time, my talents and energy to it.  This is a fair question and one which I am certain we have all asked ourselves at one time or another.

Well Jesus teaches us in Matthew 7:7 “ask and the answer shall be given to you”.   As a matter of fact --HE provided us with a book of answers in the Sacred Scriptures.

I would like to tell you a true story about an experience my friend Linda had one day at bible study. We were reading the very familiar verse John 3:16

The one we see almost every day on TV at all sporting events and probably the most familiar verse to Christians and non-Christians  alike let me ask all of you what does John 3:16 say?

That’s what I thought too but that’s not what happened that day at bible study.  Let me explain:  It was Linda’s turn to read and the verse was John 3:16.  She began to read aloud -- when a look of amazement  came over her face and her whole countenance changed…..

She slowly rose from her chair and pounded the table in front of her with her hands…she looked each one of us square in the eyes and repeated slowly and as though each word held the weight of a thousand Shakespearian  verses…….  GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD THAT HE GAVE HIS ONLY BEGOTTEN SON …… HIS only son..….her  voice trailing off in a hushed whisper.   No one said anything for a long period of time-- as each tried to grasp the intensity with which Linda had felt the power of the Holy Spirit at that moment.

I was in my mid-thirties at that time but that scene is still  vividly etched in my mind.

Now we have all had those moments of metanoia – some like the gentle wind in which the prophet heard the voice of God.  ….some  like the bolt of lightning which knocked St. Paul off his high horse on the road to Damascus.

Now using the Word of God as our guide, let’s take up the Scriptures to answer the question of the day: What’s so hot about  Cursillo?

In Luke 12:49  we hear the words which Jesus Himself speaks: "I have come to set a fire on the earth and how I wish that it were already burning"

One question leads to another ……How exactly did Jesus plan to set this fire ablaze….
So again to the “Book of Answers”  (The Bible)  to all our questions - Matthew 5:13-16
"You  are the salt of the earth but if salt loses its taste with what can it be seasoned?  It’s good for nothing but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot."  A SERIOUS admonishment there from the Lord…and  even worse  in  Revelations 3:15-16 - Jesus again speaks   "I know your works;  I know that you are neither cold nor hot.  How I wish you were either cold or hot.  So, because you are lukewarm, neither  cold nor  hot  I will spit you out of My Mouth!"

Our Lord obviously has no good use for those who are not  “HOT” on fire with love for HIM and those whom Jesus loves -- all the world HE died to save.

You,  are the light of the world; a city set on a mountaintop  cannot be hidden.  Nobody lights a lamp and puts it under a bushel basket.  It is set on a lampstand where it gives light to all in the house.  Just like that.. your light must shine before others that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Heavenly Father  Again Jesus uses fire and heat to make HIS point

So if we are indeed the “salt of the earth” of which Jesus is speaking and  it is indeed through us that HE intends to carry out HIS Master Plan.  Then exactly how is this going to happen? Back to the “Answer Book”

Now follow me here Cursillistas:  What is the Cursillo Creed?

Make a friend
Be a Friend
Bring a friend to Christ

F R I E N D S H I P???  Could it be that simple.  A few months ago our Lay Director asked us if we were “all in”;  Are we all on board with this friendship thing?

Remember your weekend what was the last and most important thing we were taught on our weekend.   Grouping with Our Friends and being faithful to Ultreya.  These were brought up at the very end on Sunday afternoon.

The  Cursillo movement saved the best for last….just  like Jesus when  right before HE ascended to the Father HE commanded us to go out to all the world and make disciples of all men.

Matthew Kelly is fond of pointing out that there is genius in Catholicism well of course it’s the Holy Spirit Who guides HIS Church.   And I truly believe that the Genius of the Holy Spirit was upon Eduardo Bonnin and those first Cursillos when they realized that in order to continue walking “The Way” of Jesus we had to have a plan to keep going and friendship groups and ultreyas are the genius of the Cursillo movement.

Again let’s consult the answer book to see what Jesus has to say about friendship:

In Proverbs 18:24 we read:  “a true friend is more loyal than a brother!”

John 15:15  Jesus speaks to us again:  “I call you “friends” because that is what you are a slave does not know what his master is about-I have told you all I have heard from my Father.”
Jesus, our FRIEND, confided to us everything we need to know to make our way back home to HIM.
Once again in John we read the passage of the woman at the well--- she ran back to tell her “friends” about Jesus.  “Come and see a man who told me everything  I have ever done.  Could HE be the Messiah?”  She literally brought her friends to Christ.

And of course the greatest of the “friends” quotes from the Scriptures,  John 15:13 “greater LOVE hath no man then to lay down HIS life for HIS ….”friends”   There’s that word again…. friends.   Jesus did the ultimate for HIS Friends

On Easter Saturday as Our Lord lay in the tomb all seemed lost….that Great Heart which had done so much good, which had cured the sick and instructed the ignorant and had pity on the sorrowing—that Lion Heart had been stilled—how could this be?  No answer came to those who had followed him, loved Him,  listened to HIS teachings, believed in HIM.

But, with Easter Sunday just as it comes again to us this morning, … that new beginning. That lion Heart was still no more but beating evermore.  One of HIS last commands to his followers was to go and make disciples of all men.  A simple command – Our Lord asked us to be faithful, to be obedient.  He doesn’t  even ask us to be successful! He will take care of that part in HIS OWN time.  He just sends us out and asks us to have faith in God have faith in HIM.  Go and make disciples of all men.  Jesus did not expect us to do this on our own.  Remember, He sent them out two by two.    For you see dear brothers and sisters  that blessed first Cursillo led us here this day in friendship.  It is the secret key to unlock the door to heaven.  “Friendship” in a dog eat dog society where we are ever bombarded by technology constant streaming of what seems like  just   “N O I S E” most of the time --  Media of every sort vying for our attention.

What we do as cursillistas is becoming ever more peculiar in our society.

Taking time to slow down read scripture to ask questions and get answers from the answer book--  To get together in small  “friendship” groups?   Attend ultreyas and share our faith?   What’s that about???  Jesus would say it’s about HIS Father’s business.

You see, if I never attended that bible study that day over 30 years ago, or if I never heard Fr. Jay speak about Ezekiel 37: and how God can raise our dry bones from the dead or if I never heard Rick challenge us one morning at school with the question “ARE YOU ALL IN?”  Or the hundreds of homilies and rollos our priests and dedicated religious have given or the many open hearted discussions we have had at Ultreya over the years,

How on earth would I be able to stand before all of you today and be so excited about what I have learned about God through my friends…. how friendship is the secret to fulfilling that command of Jesus’ over two thousand years ago.

Friendship groups-- friends  meeting at Ultreya listening to one another …encouraging one another…sharing  the Eucharist  as a community…sharing the very LIFE of Christ in one another.
You see this is what Jesus commanded when HE sent them out two by two to make disciples of all the world.  Our Cursillo method of piety, study and action shared in community is greater than the sum of its parts.  Cursillo, if practiced well,  is the very Heartbeat of the Risen Christ!  

And that my dear brothers and sisters is what’s so hot about Cursillo!