National Secretariat Busselton W.A.
held on Friday 26th to Sunday 28th May 2017. There were 9 Dioceses of Australia represented and included a total of 21 delegates and 4 guests and observers.
The conference was opened by the National Lay director Roger O’Hara and the opening Eucharist was led by Rev. Steve Niland.
The National Secretariat meeting included routine matters of national relevance, with discussion on the condensing of the 3 day Cursillo weekend to 2 days. Comments were noted from people who had already held 2 day Cursillo weekends as a trial. Reports of the results were both positive and negative. Positive because less time was needed, expenses were reduced, & working people had a better access to the 2 day weekend.
Negative from the teams point of view in that while it was fruitful it was exhausting with little time for consolidation.
The overall result appeared to be one of individual evaluation. I got the impression that if the 3 day weekend was available (after considerations of cost and inconvenience were taken into account) it should be given preference.
Anyone who was a candidate of course was unable to make comparisons and experienced a well organised weekend with a richly enhanced faith uplift, albeit overcrowded with information.
The National Dropbox facility was discussed and is proving popular with all items of interest now available for instant download and printing, including the latest ACMA manual. This makes access to documents and information very accessible.
To access the Dropbox facility, select Dropbox by Google.
Include the user name of “firstname.lastname@example.org” and password “livejohn316” you may then select your item of interest for download and it is free.The Dropbox will be continually updated as various items are made available. This app is going to be very useful in the spreading of important information in the future and our servant communities will now be well informed from a national level.
There was considerable concern about Cursillo cells that were going into recess and the difficulties around restarting them. We are asked as a national body to prayerfully consider ways in which assistance can be given to revitalize these struggling centres.
There was also considerable interest in the workshops we held here in Newcastle after they were noticed in our Diocesan report.
Newcastle gave a resume of the workshops with almost all reps. present asking if they could get more information. It was evident that just as Newcastle was having difficulty establishing and understanding the true role of healthy Serving Communities, so was everybody else. Some Diocese had no such groups and their secretariats were doing the jobs of LSSC groups as well as their own responsibilities. Hence the LSSC groups became a very hot and pursued topic of interest. As a result and at the request of the meeting, Newcastle is providing information relating to the workshops so that it can be issued nationally.
The Cursillistas from Saint Mary’s Busselton hosted a very pleasant Saturday evening dinner for us at their nearby parish complex and welcomed us again at the morning Eucharist in the adjoining historic Saint Mary’s church on the Sunday morning (est.1844).
The weekend conference concluded with a final Eucharist conducted by Rev. Sue Allen and assisted by Rev. Steve Niland, followed by the commissioning of Rev. Steve Niland as National SA and the decommissioning of Rev. Sue Allen from that role.
Unfortunately the National Spiritual Director Bishop Ian Palmer could not attend and gave his apology.
A huge vote of thanks was extended to Busselton for its organisation and hospitality.
The next National conference will be hosted by Adelaide on the 22nd to 24th September 2017.
Newcastle expressed an interest in hosting a national gathering in Newcastle in 2020 which will be our 30th birthday.
Newcastle will also continue to support North Queensland as it faces considerable difficulties about distance and enthusiasm from within its bounds. It is very grateful for assistance that has already been given. Robyn and Marcia Hyde from Nth Queensland are doing a sterling job keeping the Cursillo ideal alive under these very difficult conditions.
Ultreya and De Colores! Brian Walsh and Lyn Carter. Co Lay-directors.