Weekend 31

Weekend 31-staff
Weekend 31-pic2
Weekend 31-pic2-pilgrims


It was quite daunting to be asked to be Lay Rector of London #31, the first Weekend at our new venue of Felden Lodge! It turned out to be a wonderful experience, leading a remarkable staff team and meeting the enthusiastic pilgrims and witnessing their journey.

We were given a challenge from the previous Lay Rector to try to get some younger pilgrims. I think we achieved it! We managed an average age of 43. Now the challenge is to maintain it!

Felden Lodge was very successful as a venue. We had the whole house to ourselves but perhaps we didn't use the outside space as much as we might; there are 32 acres of grounds. The pilgrims, however, got out there more than the staff! The Felden Lodge staff were lovely and very helpful, even making a large jug of custard when a member of our staff commented that the crumble would be better with custard!

The Weekend was dedicated to St Teresa of Calcutta and the table groups to two weather saints, St Swithun and St Médard, and an ice saint, St Pancras of Rome.

It was lovely to have separate rooms to use as the Rollo Room, the Staff Room and the Palanca Room. The acoustics were good and the Rollo Room felt homely and friendly. It also had large windows which made it feel airy. Having a Transport Cha Cha proved to be very useful collecting people from the station.

The Weekend was not without its challenges! The lift was out of action which meant there was a lot of climbing of stairs. It did at least give us some exercise! The tea and coffee station was on the ground floor and could be used 24 hours a day.  This also encouraged more exercise!

It was very helpful having been on a Cursillo Leaders’ Workshop in March because making changes to the programme for the timing was easier, knowing that we should stick to the authentic Cursillo i.e. the 15 talks, 5 meditations and the daily Eucharist. We knew we needed to be able to justify our 'add-ons'.

I thoroughly enjoyed the Weekend; it was certainly filled with the Holy Spirit and I feel that there are several members of staff and pilgrims who would make excellent future Lay Rectors.

Pilgrims Report

“I was apprehensive to start with, but soon got to know people and became part of a family unit – I wasn’t alone but part of a community. Also I got a sense of empowerment; I don’t normally like speaking out in front of people, but here I felt anything you said was worthy. On my table, we were all working together; it didn’t feel as though the table leaders knew more than me.”
- Kay Craigie, St Martin’s, Ruislip

“I felt the Weekend was spiritual, uplifting, enlightening, empowering, educational and fulfilling.”
- Pennie Nicholas, All Saints, Haggerston & Holy Trinity, Dalston

“If you have the opportunity to go on a Cursillo Weekend, grasp the opportunity. It’s not like going to church or any other thing I have known. It’s full of spiritual enlightenment.”  
- John Paul, All Saints, Haggerston, & Holy Trinity, Dalston

“It was a very enjoyable Weekend, a bit different, in a good way, and it gave you lots of things to further your journey. I wasn’t sure what to expect but it moved me in ways I didn’t think I could be moved, and the whole Weekend was full of good surprises.”
- Michael Loosemore, St Martin’s, Ruislip

“Keep an open mind, enjoy yourself, let the spirit flow.”
- Maureen Witter, St Ann’s, Hoxton

“The Weekend was indescribable. I was apprehensive to start with, but was whisked away by the emotion – it was a roller coaster – a good one! A fantastic Weekend.”
- Eleanor Brown, St Martin’s, Ruislip

“It was spiritually uplifting and a wonderful journey. I made friends too, who I’ve met up with since.”
- Sally Gardner, St Martin’s, Ruislip

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