When I was first asked to be lay rector on a Cursillo it was by Su Rennison (unfortunately no longer with us) who was then Lay Director of Canterbury Cursillo, and I said that it was out of the question as I was working full-time and also churchwarden of a busy church.

A few years passed and I was again asked - this time by Barbara Verga. I was no longer churchwarden and was just getting used to being retired. This time I asked for time to decide. All that was going through my mind was “I can’t do it”. However after praying about it, and speaking to trusted friends, I decided that I would accept the challenge. I still knew that I couldn’t do it – but I also knew that God and I together could and that, for a reason known only to God, He wanted me to be Lay Rector of this Cursillo.


There were some very experienced members of the staff team including our Spiritual Advisors Rev Don & Ann Irvine, as well as others for whom it was the first time staffing. Over the course of the staff training days we all got to know each other very well and gained in confidence as a team.


So it was that after weeks of glorious weather we arrived at Judds Folly in the rain - but that didn’t dampen our spirits! The pilgrims duly arrived and it became apparent, as we had a welcoming drink, what a great bunch of people they all were.


As we were preparing to go outside for one of our first activities the rain stopped and thus we were able to complete it in the dry. (not the only time that this happened over the weekend!)


Right from the beginning everyone joined in fully with activities, and there was lots of brilliant feedback from the discussions etc. We talked a lot, shared a lot, sang a lot (music cha cha Mike Cooke was always ready with a tune!), laughed a lot, loved a lot and of course worshipped a lot together. We were truly blessed by the Lord.


Staffing on a Cursillo is always a very special experience, witnessing the changes in people as they experience God’s love in a new or different way – it is not only the pilgrims who gain from the interaction, and the staff on Canterbury #56 certainly gained much from the pilgrims as well.


As Lay rector I feel really privileged that God called me, guided me and used me in this way.


Thank-you to all the pilgrims and staff, as well as those working behind the scenes, as every one of you contributed to making the weekend absolutely amazing.


Christine Williams


PS - It was lovely to see a lot of the pilgrims and staff from Canterbury #56 at the Diocesan Ultreya in Hythe in November