New Year Message from our Lay Director

Barbara Harrold, our Lay Director writes:

Dear Cursillistas

I wish you all a very Happy Christmas and a peaceful, successful and healthy New Year.

Heather Flint who has been our magazine editor for many years needed to take a break this year due to continuing health difficulties and therefore it was decided to have a newsletter twice a year to keep you all up todate with Weekends, Ultreya’s and what been happening in the diocese.

Firstly, why am I writing to you and not Peter Bates, well sadly Peter had to stand down when Rev Julie Oddy Bates, Peters wife, retired from her clergy position and they moved to Lincolnshire. Peter and Julie are happily settled in Lincolnshire and continue their connection with Cursillo there.

This left the position of Lay Director open and as no one was trained to take over I was asked to step in as I had done the job before. It’s a great honour to lead Norwich Cursillo especially when I have inherited a very capable secretariat and so I would like to take this opportunity to wish them all a very happy Christmas and New Year and thank them for their help over the last few months.

Some of you may know, but if not, you do now Peter Bates decided that Norwich Cursillo would host the BACC (British Anglican Cursillo Council) full annual council meeting in Norwich this year and the National Ultreya in 2021. 

The BACC annual meeting gave me a good idea of how good a team I have. Bill Rout, our BACC representative, organised most of the event with the help from Jenny Ferns who handled the catering side. Halls, church rooms, maps, information literature, transport, parking very professionally organised by Bill and the most superb banquet produced with a small team of helpers led by Jenny and let me tell you it was magnificent and Trevor King, the National Director was duly impressed but with that kind of standard we have a lot to live up to in 2021.

During the summer Bill and Pat Rout, Roger Harrold and myself attended the Archdeacons Charge in a marquee at Holkham Hall where we promoted Cursillo to visitors and walkers though out the day as they ‘charged’ around the grounds. We were also able to chat to many passing clergy which was a bonus. We hope to have a stand at the Charge in 2019 but the dates clash with a National event so I am looking for Cursillistas who might be interested in manning the stall for us. The dates are Saturday 18th May at Sandringham Park, and if you are interested please contact me on

Another event attended by Cursillistas was the National Ultreya in Chelmsford Cathedral. It was one of the hottest days of the year and walking the banner through the town was something I decided to watch from inside the cooler cathedral. I was also giving thanks for the fact that Roger was able to carry the banner this year because one year earlier, when about to attend the 2017 national event, he had his heart attack and here he was fit, well and actively taking part.

In 2019 the National Ultreya takes place on Saturday 31st August in Chester. More information can be found on the BACC website as can all booking information. These are wonderful events to attend with at least 200 – 300 hundred people taking part, and the singing is wonderful. In 2019 the next National Director will be appointed enabling him/her to ghost Trevor King as he serves the last of his three-year term.

Mandy Davison will be leading the next weekend February 25th – 28th 2019  Monday to Thursday and we are hoping members of the clergy might be persuaded to join us and spend a few days learning about Cursillo, enjoying the lovely surroundings at The Pleasaunce, Overstrand and be able to take it back to their parishes and encourage their congregations to experience the love, friendship and Christian teachings found over the 4 days of Cursillo. This is especially relevant this year as during 2019 the dioceses will be rolling out ‘Setting Gods People Free’ something Cursillo has been teaching for many years and we are hoping to be involved.

I am please to report we held 4 Ultreya’s during the year, starting at St Edmunds, Taverham where we heard Rev Riaz Mubarak’s witness, in April it was held at Diocesan house and David Broom told of his personal journey to Christ. St Andrew’s Felmingham held the July Ultreya and Jane Moore took us through her very interesting journey and we finished the programme at All Saints Wootton, Kings Lynn in October with Laurence Morlass’s witness talk. Thank you to everyone who made us welcome during the year and a special thank you to those who witnessed and were willing to share some very personal details often making us realise that for many our personal walk with God has been quite simple. Sadly we had to cancel the carols and cake event to be held at Diocesan house in December due to a lack of support but as it was short notice event it was not a surprise. This year we will get a date booked early and hope many of you will join us.

May 11th we will be the date for this years A. G. M. and this time the secretariat has decided not to hold an Ultreya, enabling the business of the meeting to be completed in the morning followed by time to have lunch and plenty of fellowship.

Ultreya’s.  I have been running the Ultreya’s since they started in Norwich after Norwich 2 and would dearly love to be able to hand this job over to someone new. New blood is always beneficial and all jobs in Cursillo are supposed to be fluid and moving forwards therefore if anyone is interested in learning about the requirements please get in touch and I will tell them what is needed.

Thank you to all Cursillistas who have supported our weekends with palanca, prayers and by attending the Clausura at the end of each weekend to welcome our newest members.

I hope to see many of you during 2019 and hope each of our small groups keep us informed of their activities and if you would like to invite a member of the secretariat to join with you so they can     report back on your activities we would be delighted to hear from you.                                

Lord, we put all our needs to you this Christmas time. Thank you for knowing and understanding each of them. You understand even the things that are not written down. Thank you, God, for loving us and meeting every need we have. Bless all who read this letter keeping them safe and well during 2019.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Lay Director

Barbara Harrold

Leave a Comment