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 July 2005

    Calendar of Events
July 10, 2005                  40th Anniversary Celebration - 4:00pm Mass, Blessed John XXIII Diocesan Center;
                                       Banquet following in Dawson Hall (registration required by July 1).
July 15-16, 2005             School of Leaders (quarterly reunion) - 7:30pm Fri-4pm Sat, Church of Holy Spirit, Plattsmouth
July 28 - 31, 2005           Cursillo National Encounter, Benedictine College, Atchison, KS
August 6, 2005  Changed to August 13, 2005  Secretariat Meeting - 9:30am, Blessed John XXIII Diocesan Center
September 10, 2005        Secretariat Meeting - 9:30am, Blessed John XXIII Diocesan Center
September 23-25, 2005   Region VI Fall Encounter, Sacred Heart Parish, Hebron, NE
Sept 30 - Oct 1, 2005      Practice Weekend, St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
October 1, 2005              Secretariat Meeting - Approx. 12:30pm, St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
October 6-9, 2005          Men’s Weekend, St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
October 9, 2005             Men’s Closing, 5:00pm (4:00pm Mass) St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
October 20-23, 2005     Women’s Weekend, St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
October 23, 2005           Women’s Closing, 5:00pm (4:00pm Mass) St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE
November 4-5, 2005       School of Leaders (quarterly reunion) - 7:30pm Fri-4pm Sat, Location TBA
November 19, 2005        Secretariat Meeting - 10:00am, St. John the Baptist, Minden, NE

40th Anniversary Celebration
July 10, 2005

Reminder ...
    Banquet Registration forms MUST BE received by NO LATER THAN July 1, 2005.
    We need a registration form before we can include you in the meal count ...

The celebration is planned for Sunday,
July 10, 2005, at the Blessed John XXIII
Diocesan Center (37th and Sheridan, Lincoln)
The Celebration will begin with a 4:00 p.m.
Mass in the Chapel ... Bishop Bruskewitz will be the main celebrant ...
Dinner and social time (in Dawson Hall) will follow Mass at approximately 5:30 p.m.
(reservation required)

News From Secretariat ...

“Make a friend, BE a friend, and
bring that friend to Christ”…

+ Precursillo ...

+ Precursillo, cont’d ... + Three Day Weekend ... + Postcursillo:
+ 40th Anniversary Celebration ...
   A little about the Celebration and history of Cursillo in our Diocese (excerpts from the Southern Nebraska Register, June 3, 2005):
   “A celebration is planned for July 10 at the Blessed John XXIII Diocesan Center in Lincoln. It will begin with a 4 p.m. Mass in the chapel with Bishop Bruskewitz as the main celebrant, followed by a catered meal in Dawson Hall. ...
    Cursillo came to the Lincoln Diocese 40 years ago this July (July 22-25, 1965). ... The first Cursillo in the United States took place in May 1957, when Spanish Air Cadets in the United States for training held a Weekend in Waco, Texas, for a group of Spanish-speaking men. The Movement spread rapidly throughout the United States, and has led to substantially greater involvement of laypersons in the Church’s diocesan organizations and parish renewal. ...
    Cursillo formally came to the Lincoln Diocese in July 1965, when the first men’s Three Day Cursillo Weekend was held at Pius X High School in Lincoln.  A team from the Omaha Archdiocese led this first Cursillo.  Prior to this Weekend, a number of priests and laypersons from the Lincoln Diocese had lived Cursillos in other dioceses (or areas of the world), and they assisted the Omaha team in putting on the first Cursillo in the Lincoln Diocese.
    Following the July 1965 Weekend, the priest who brought Cursillo into the Lincoln Diocese was assigned to further his education at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.  In spite of his absence, Cursillo continued to grow in that a number of priests, sisters, and laypersons went outside the Lincoln Diocese to live Cursillo Weekends.  In addition, some cursillistas from the Lincoln Diocese became part of the teams putting on Weekends in neighboring dioceses.
    Following an April 1968 meeting between Bishop Glennon Flavin, who was installed as Bishop in August 1967, and cursillistas in the Lincoln Diocese, the Bishop appointed a diocesan spiritual advisor for the Cursillo Movement.  Those cursillistas who had lived their Weekend in the Lincoln Diocese in 1965 and those who had gone elsewhere during the three-year hiatus, then met and formed a “Secretariat,” a group of Cursillo leaders who implement the Movement according to norms and guidelines established by the National Secretariat.
    In early September 1968, a meeting of all interested cursillistas was held to announce a School of Leaders (as it is known today).  The School of Leaders began formally meeting for a series of workshops every Monday evening, with regular attendance of 35 to 40.  Once formation had begun through School of Leaders, Men’s Cursillo No. 2 was held in May 1969 and the first women’s Cursillo was held in October 1969, with both still being directed by teams from outside the Lincoln Diocese (Council Bluffs).  The Lincoln Diocese is deeply indebted to Cursillo leaders in the surrounding dioceses for the formation and Christian community they helped bring into the Lincoln Diocese.  The Lincoln Diocese first formed its own teams for Men’s Cursillo No. 3 in December 1969 and Women’s Cursillo No. 2 in April 1970, and has been going strong in the Lincoln Diocese ever since.”

+ Directory Update
    We are in the process of updating the Cursillo Directory.  If the information included in the current directory (2002) is not correct, or if you would like to add information (e.g. an email address, etc), please contact your Ultreya Center Representative or a Secretariat member (the names and phone numbers are listed on the cover of the Newsletter).  We are trying to contact everyone who did not turn in the surveys mailed last summer, but if we missed calling you, please call us.

+ Secretariat Visits to Ultreya Centers ...
    The Secretariat is continuing its visits to each Ultreya Center to encourage cursillistas throughout the Diocese to live the Fourth Day.  The visits have been good and it is nice to renew old friendships and make new ones.  Take time to participate in these special Ultreyas when they come to your area!  Upcoming visits:

+ Wahoo – Sunday, June 26th, basement of St. Wenceslaus Church (Wahoo), 7:00pm.
+ David City/ShelbyThurs., June 30th, St. Mary School (David City), 7:00pm.  This is a regularly scheduled Ultreya ... Msgr. Herbek is giving the witness!
+ Planning Ahead -- A Year at a Glance
    The Secretariat is releasing the  tentative/proposed schedule of Cursillo activities for 2005-2006 in the Lincoln Diocese.  The schedule includes activities from the present through August 2006, and includes upcoming Secretariat meetings, quarterly SOLs, Three Day Cursillo Weekends, and Regional and National Encounters, etc.  The tentative/proposed schedule is intended to provide you with as much advance notice as possible to allow you to adjust your schedules to participate in Cursillo to the fullest extent possible.
Secretariat Meetings
     Aug 6    Changed to: Aug 13
     Sep 10
     Oct 1          (meeting following Practice Weekend)
     Nov 19       (Postcursillo Reunion follows Meeting)
     Dec 10
     Jan 7
     Mar 18       (Postcursillo Reunion follows Meeting)
     Apr 22
     Jun 3 or 10
     Jul 8

     Jul 15-16 at Plattsmouth
     Nov 4-5 at Western location?
     Jan 13-14
     Apr 28-29
     Jul 14-15

Three Day Weekend Activities
     Sep 30-Oct 1     Practice
     Oct 6-9              Men’s
     Oct 20-23          Women’s
     Nov 19               Postcursillo Reunion
     Feb 3-4              Practice
     Feb 9-12            Men’s
     Feb 23-26          Women’s
     Mar 18               Postcursillo Reunion

Regional/National Encounters
     Jul 28-31          National Encounter(Atchison, KS)
     Sep 23-25        Fall Regional Encounter (Hebron, NE)
     Apr 7-9            Spring Regional Encounter
     Jul 27-30          National Encounter(Location TBA)

     Jul 10, 2005     40th Anniversary Celebration at Blessed John XXIII Diocesan Center
     Jun 25, 2006    Grand Ultreya

+ School of Leaders (SOL) ...

    The next quarterly SOL (see Registration Form insert) will be July 15-16, 2005, at St. John the Baptist School (Church of the Holy Spirit) in Plattsmouth, NE.  We are trying to vary the location of SOL to provide ALL cursillistas throughout the Diocese an opportunity to participate ... we would love to have more participation ... we welcome new participants!

    The Technique Talks will be taken from topics found in the book Structure of Ideas, which presents the main ideas of the Cursillo.  The Doctrinal Talks will be taken from Pope John Paul II’s Apostolic Exhortation Christifideles Laici: (On The Vocation and the Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in the World; Dec. 30, 1988).  The document may be downloaded at: apost_exhortations/index.htm

    Please consider coming in July ... there is no beginning and there is no end ...

From the Lay Director ...

    As I was driving to Beatrice to finish working on the Newsletter, I was praying/thinking about what I would write here (this is always the last thing done).  Usually, I spend any time in the car in silence … praying/thinking … but today, I was tired, so I opted to listen to a portion of a set of tapes by Fr. Andrew Apostoli, entitled The Journey Within: Teresa’s Interior Castle.  A fair portion of the teachings of Cursillo are based on Carmelite spirituality … the writings of St. Teresa of Jesus (also known as St. Teresa of Avila), St. John of the Cross, and St. Therese of the Child Jesus and Holy Face … so it seemed appropriate preparation for the work of Cursillo ahead of me.

    One of the things that Fr. Apostoli talks about is the importance of studying the lives of the saints … they should be our heroes … we should try to pattern our love for the Lord (and our lives, to the extent that we can) after theirs.  St. Teresa of Jesus had a special devotion to St. Joseph … she always believed that his intercession saved her from an early life-threatening illness … in fact, she was believed to have died.  My mother also had a great devotion to St. Joseph … when she was in the 4th grade, she had spinal meningitis and wasn’t expected to live … she lost her hearing for six months and needed to repeat the fourth grade … but she pulled through … and she always told me that it was because of St. Joseph’s intercession.  From the time I was in the 1st grade (I used to sit with my older brother and sister as they learned to read, so I learned to read at an early age), I loved to read about the lives of the saints … and St. Bernadette was my very first “friend” …  But back to St. Teresa  …

    St. Teresa believed that there was not a single time when she asked for St. Joseph’s intercession that he did not assist her.  In The Autobiography of St. Teresa of Avila (Chapter 6), St. Teresa says: “I do not remember even now that I have ever asked anything of him [St. Joseph] which he has failed to grant … To other saints the Lord seems to have given grace to succor us in some of our necessities, but of this glorious saint my experience is that he succors us in them all …”

    Fr. Apostoli told an interesting and humorous story regarding St. Teresa’s (and the Carmelites’) great reliance on St. Joseph.  Many Carmelite convents have an “altar of St. Joseph” or a “table of St. Joseph” on which they place prayer requests.  Fr. Apostoli told the story of a Carmelite convent in Queens (New York) where the sisters took care of elderly residents in a nursing home.  The residents asked the sisters if they might have a little beer in the evenings so that it might help them to relax/sleep … not for purposes of getting drunk … just for enjoyment.  The sisters told the residents that their meager budget didn’t allow for them to purchase beer, but that they would go to St. Joseph.  So they placed an empty beer container on the altar of St. Joseph and piously prayed for beer!!

    During this time, a priest came to the convent to hear the confessions of the sisters, and when he had finished, he prayed/gave thanks at the altar of St. Joseph … and he noticed the empty beer container.  He attributed it to a drunken man/transient who must have stopped through, so when he finished praying, he pointed it out to the Mother Superior.  She assured him that she was the one who had put the empty container there and she explained the reason for having done so.  The priest not pleased and thought the action to be irreverent and semi-nuts.

    A few days later, the priest was riding on the subway, and at one stop, a very nicely dressed gentleman in a three-piece business suit boarded the subway together with another man wearing a cap and appearing to be a chauffeur; the two sat next to the priest.  As the three rode along, the priest recalled the empty beer container and the sisters praying for beer, and he began to chuckle.  The gentleman in the business suit asked the priest if he was laughing at him, and the priest responded by relating the story of the sisters praying for beer.  The gentleman said that he never rode the subway, but that day, his limousine had broken down, and he was required to take the subway to reach his destination in time.  He explained that his last name was Schaefer … and that he was the owner of Schaefer Brewery in Brooklyn (New York).  He said that he would be happy to supply the sisters with the beer they needed!!  Fr. Apostoli further commented that at one retreat at which he told this story, a woman came up to him afterwards and told him that her father used to deliver beer for Schaefer Brewery, and that one of his stops was indeed a convent!!  God’s Providence … St. Joseph’s intercession … the beauty in that the residents were not afraid to ask … the faith of the sisters in passing along their request to St. Joseph … and trusting …

    I liked the story for a number of reasons.  First of all, I am a firm believer in the value of learning as much as I can about the lives of the holy men and women that Holy Mother Church holds out to us as models for our own lives … that I might better pattern my life after theirs … that they might become my “friends” … that they might intercede for me.   Why should I re-invent the wheel in trying to figure out what will bring me closer to our Lord?  Why not let these holy “friends” help guide me to sanctity by imitating the many and varied ways in which they showed their love for our Lord?
 Second, I want to have the faith of a child … I want to believe as the sisters did that there is no prayer that God believes to be ridiculous, in spite of what others may think.  That which is prayed for in love (and our Lord loves the elderly in a very special way) will not fall on deaf ears …  How beautiful that the residents of the nursing home felt they could ask the sisters for the beer … and how beautiful the simple faith of the sisters to take their request to St. Joseph!  I want that courage and that faith for my own.

    And lastly, I liked the story because St. Joseph is one of my mother’s favorites (and he’s one of my “friends” too) … he interceded to save my mother’s life …  And he is such a wonderful example of humility and obedience and patience and hard work and simplicity … all of the virtues that Mark Pribyl refers to in his article “Why Cursillo?” (under the Three Day Weekend portion of the Notes from the Secretariat).  St. Joseph didn’t ask for explanations when he was asked to do something that he didn’t understand (e.g., taking Mary into his house when she was with child … not his, or fleeing into Egypt to protect Jesus) …  He just went about doing that which he was asked to do (and that which needed doing … without being asked!) … and he did it out of love ...

    I join St. Teresa in her reliance on the power of St. Joseph’s intercession …  And fully trusting in his intercession, I ask both St. Joseph and St. Teresa to ask our Lord to bless the Cursillo Movement in our Diocese … to bless all cursillistas … to make us strong vertebrae!  I ask them  to give us unfailing persistence (such as theirs) in carrying through that which our Lord gives US to do … unfailing persistence to faithfully live the Fourth Day … to be part of a Group Reunion and take part in Ultreya … to help us be strong Catholic vertebrae in the fabric of an un-Christian society ... and in the Cursillo Movement ... to help us, out of love, to continue to urge one another Onward!!  … Ultreya!!  … knowing that most of the time it’s not about us … it’s about loving God by loving others …  May St. Joseph and St. Teresa help us to faithfully live what we learned on the Three Day Weekend … may they help us to grow in piety, study, and action … may they be with us during each Fourth Day … and may they be with us especially on our last Fourth Day, that we might have a happy death … and live the Fifth Day in heaven!!

De Colores!! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Kathy Springer

From the Spiritual Advisor ...

    Recently, I read in the Magnificat devotional a meditation written by St. Thomas More entitled “Fruitful Cooperation”.  I especially liked one of the little examples that  St. Thomas More used: “If a man lowers a rope into a well and pulls someone out who would not escape by himself, wouldn’t it be true that the man in the well did not climb out by his own power?  And yet he still contributed something of his own to the process by hanging on to the rope and not letting it get away.  The freedom of the will is like that: It can do nothing without grace.  But when the divine goodness grants grace generously, the free will of a good man holds fast to it and cooperates with it properly.  But the free will of an evil man does not accept grace; it wears itself out in malice ...”

    The Gospel passage for the day was from Matthew 7:15-20 about bearing good fruit. I was reminded of an important phrase from Cursillo: “Bloom where you are planted.”  A flower blooming where it is planted is bearing good fruit.  A man or woman, responding to God’s grace and doing the good that he or she is called to do, is bearing good fruit.  The goodness of the flower does not come from itself, but from the Lord Who made it, and Who gave the flower the soil, the rains, and the sunshine.  The goodness of the human person does not come from oneself, but from the Lord Who made us, and Who gave us our life, our health, our talents, and an inclination to do something good.

    When we accept God’s grace, respond to it, and cooperate with it, then much good will happen.  Similarly, when we do not accept God’s grace, and do not open ourselves to His Will and cooperate with it, then much evil and sin will happen.  God has something in mind for each of us to do ... and we are to take time each day of our life to rest with God and reflect on Him ... on His love for us, and His Will for us.  Taking time with the Lord and asking Him what He wants us to do, and being sensitive to and alert to His presence in our daily life (that would be the close moments we speak of ...), is one of the best ways to be aware of how we are called to bloom where we are planted.  We will better recognize God’s grace and be better prepared to respond to it.

    Sometimes, God’s Will and His grace seem to lead us, or plant us, where we don’t really want to be.  Yet, being planted in the worst place (by our standards) but being open to His grace is far better that being planted in the best place (by our standards) and having to do everything ourselves because we are closed to His grace and intent on doing our own will.  Sometimes we think or say: “This is the way I (we) have always done this.  I like it this way.”  Sometimes that means that we project that God likes it that way too.  Maybe He has a different plan ... a different place or way for us to bloom.  Maybe that way involves suffering, or the cross, or those things that we don’t like ... but with His grace, all things are possible.  Remember, “Christ and I are an overwhelming majority.”

    Perhaps, the example of St. Thomas More gives a whole new understanding to the old phrase: “When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hold on!”  If the rope (His grace) is lowered down to us by God in the place where He planted us, where He wants us to grow, where He wants us to bloom ... then all we need to do is make an act of the will to hang on and to do His Will, not our own, and cooperate with His grace and His Will.

De Colores . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Father Mark Seiker

(Insert #1)


(Insert #2)

Registration Form

School of Leaders
Quarterly Reunion
July 15-16, 2005
520 S 18th Street (Church of the Holy Spirit)
St. John the Baptist School - Plattsmouth, NE

We would love to have more participation ...
We welcome new participants!!

If you cannot be with us, we request Palanca for the success of the School.

Name: ________________________________________________________________

Address: ______________________________________________________________

City/State/Zip: _________________________________________________________

Phone:                                         Email: ______________________________________

Where and when did you make your Cursillo? ______________________________________________________

Are you able to receive the Sacraments of Confession & Holy Communion?    Yes     No

To which Organizations do you commit your time? __________________________________________________

Are you living the follow-up program of Group Reunion?    Yes     No

Are you living the follow-up program of Ultreya?    Yes     No

Do you have any physical/medical/dietary conditions to be considered? __________________________________

Please Return this Form WITH PAYMENT To:
John Springer, 1410 E 15th St, Crete, NE 68333                             BY JULY 13, 2005

You are invited to the Quarterly Reunion of the School of Leaders.  Come participate in the work of Cursillo ... build
community with other cursillistas ... spend time in prayer and meditation with the Blessed Sacrament.  The School is for all
cursillistas ... men and women, couples, singles, priests and religious.

FRIDAY, JULY 15th (Retreat Phase ... preparation for Saturday's SOL)
        7:30pm ---      Registration (NO Meal Friday evening)
        7:45pm ---      Mass
        8:30pm ---      Meditation, confessions, quiet time

SATURDAY, JULY 16th (School of Leaders Agenda)
        7:00am ---      Morning prayer and Mass, followed by breakfast
        8:30am - 4pm Group Reunion, Intro, 2-3 Sessions and Lunch
        4:00pm ---     Clean up and Depart (Supper not provided)

Please bring the following with you to the SOL:

Please bring a snack to share, if you like.

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