Cursillo is a movement, a method and a ministry.
The key elements of the Episcopal Cursillo Ministry are relationship, evangelism, and reconciliation in the home, the parish, the community, and the world. Cursillo offers a time to experience living in a supportive Christian community though the Episcopal Cursillo Weekend, following a three-day schedule that begins on Thursday evening and concludes on Sunday. The weekend includes fifteen talks, five meditations and a Eucharist every day. The Episcopal Cursillo Weekend isn't a retreat. It's an opportunity to gather with clergy and laity, seeking to strengthen our faith.
EDUSC Cursillo is guided and empowered by a national ministry, the Episcopal Cursillo Ministry.
- An environment to experience the reality of God's gift of love through shared prayer, individual meditation, worship, study, fellowship, laughter, tears, and unconditional love
- An opportunity to grow in faith and in spirituality
- Experience with a method involving piety, study, and action to deepen our spiritual journey
- Tools for bringing Christ into our individual environments
- A community that supports and encourages us to carry out our Baptismal Vows
"I was fortunate to attend Cursillo in Alabama 39 years ago when I was 30. I loved God and loved church, which provided the "what" of a Christian life, but my Cursillo weekend gave me the "how" tools I needed to live a balanced life of faith. For more than thirty years, I met weekly with my group reunion, and we help each other accountable to a life of piety (worship), study (learning about the gift of God), and action (being God's hands and feet in the world). We also learned how to talk about God (evangelize) in a very natural way, as "God-talk" became a weekly practice. My long-ago Cursillo weekend was far more than a retreat -- it was my roadmap for a faith-full life." - Sharon Landis
EDUSC Cursillo’s Pay It Forward fund was established to ensure that money never stands in the way of anyone’s experiencing God’s love in a supportive Christian environment by attending a Cursillo weekend. It is a gift from the Cursillo community, with prayers that we can pass the gift to others who want a deeper walk with Christ and the tools to serve others.
The fees that Cursillo Council requests for a weekend are well below actual weekend expenses. The difference is covered by donations from the Pay It Forward fund. Scholarships are available to candidates and staff. We pray that everyone will donate to this fund: Ultreyas, Group Reunions, Churches, and anyone who believes in the potential of Cursillo to change us, and through us, our environments. Your support makes a critical difference!
"A purposeful act or extension of kindness to another is never wasted, for it always resides in the hearts of all involved in a chain of love," Molly Friedenfeld, The Book of Simple Human Truths
"For the rendering of this ministry not only supplies the needs of the saints but also overflows with many thanksgivings to God." 2 Corinthians 9:12
You can also send a check made out to "EDUSC Cursillo" with “Pay It Forward” in the memo. Mail the check to Emery Clark, Treasurer, 1420 Belmont Drive, Columbia SC 29205.
Who can attend?
Any Episcopalian, eighteen years of age or older, may attend a Cursillo. Episcopalian is defined as any baptized Christian and member in good standing, as defined by the parish priest, of any parish in the Diocese of Upper South Carolina. Cursillo is intended for laity and clergy who are curious, searching, discovering, growing.
What is the relationship of Cursillo to the Church?
Cursillo is a ministry within the church, under the direction of the Diocesan Bishop.
Are there Cursillo secrets?
You may have been told by someone who has attended the weekend that he or she cannot tell you what Cursillo is about, or what goes on during a Cursillo weekend. This is not correct. Everything that goes on during the weekend may be told to anyone. Cursillo literature is available to anyone who is interested. While there are no secrets, there are very pleasant surprises in every weekend.Talks and meditations are included in the Flow of the Weekend.
What happens on a weekend?
The three-day weekend brings together a group of Episcopalians to share the richness of worship and to broaden each one’s appreciation for the Church. Lay people conduct the weekend with two or three members of the clergy functioning as spiritual advisors. In the course of the weekend, a series of 15 talks are given with emphasis on the doctrine of Grace, the Sacraments, and the Cursillo Foundations: Piety, Study and Action. Table groups discuss and respond to the talks. The Eucharist is celebrated daily, and the Daily Offices are used. Some time is provided for prayer, confession, and spiritual direction. There is also fellowship, singing, good food, time for privacy, meditation and prayer.
How much does it cost?
The three-day weekend costs $200. Scholarships for Cursillo are usually available both from the Diocese and sometimes from parishes. For more information, contact your sponsor, rector, the Cursillo registrar or any member of the Cursillo Council.
What is a Cursillo sponsor?
Your sponsor is an invaluable support person before, during, and after your Cursillo experience. If you are interested in attending Cursillo and don't have a sponsor, contact your rector and he or she will help you find a sponsor.
How should a new person approach Cursillo?
- Be curious
- Be open to what happens in the now
- Be honest with yourself about where you are in your spiritual pilgrimage
- Be assured that Cursillo expects no specific response from you.
- Allow others to respond in their way and yourself to respond in your own way
The EDUSC Cursillo Council includes people from different convocations and parishes. The Council meets regularly, to ensure the health of the ministry, call Lay Rectors for upcoming weekends, make policy/guidelines decisions, and coordinate trainings for the diocese and in the region.
EDUSC Cursillo Council 2023
- Shannon Beckham Berley, St. Francis of Assisi, Chapin
- Emery Clark, Trinity Cathedral, Columbia, Treasurer (ex-officio)
- Kaye Curtis, Christ Church, Greenville, President
- Carol DuBose, Trinity Cathedral, Columbia
- Mary Balfour Dunlap+, Resurrection, Greenwood
- Adam Dougherty, Trinity Cathedral, Columbia
- Kathryn Hix, Christ Church, Greenville
- Janet Jendron Borellis, St. Paul's, Fort Mill, Communications Coordinator (ex-officio)
- Ernest Jenkins, Christ Church, Lancaster
- David Rutledge, St. Matthews, Spartanburg
- Susan Sadler, St. Augustine of Canterbury, Aiken
- Duvy Spruill, St. John's, Columbia, Kairos Liaison (ex-officio)
- Gloria Talley, St. Alban’s, Lexington
- Dan Wagner+, St. Augustine of Canterbury, Aiken
Upcoming Cursillo Gatherings