The full name of Cursillo is the Spanish phrase Cursillo de Cristiandad, which means a short Course in Christianity. Over three days, adults teach other adults aspects of the nature and content of Christianity, as they have discovered and lived it through their own experiences. A series of short sessions emphasises human encounters with God, building and strengthening a relationship with him, through prayer, study, action and other experiences with the living Christ. The Cursillo “curriculum” is deeply rooted in the Word of God and in shared understandings and traditions of the Christian Church.
Cursillo is a course. It is not a retreat which provides a place and a period of complete seclusion and privacy, devoted to religious observance, contemplation and prayer. Nevertheless, the whole weekend, its preparation and follow-up is bathed in prayer. As much as the schedule allows, we aim to give participants the opportunity to be alone with God, to bring to him in prayer and contemplation the themes and truths about which they are learning.
In Geneva, Cursillo is ecumenical, which makes it an even richer spiritual journey. People draw from different traditions of Catholicism and the church communities that emerged during the Reformation, emphasizing those aspects which unite us in Christ, not those that divide. Learning about and coming to value traditions different from those familiar to us can provide an enrichment of our understanding of God’s huge heart and family.