“Cursillistas” (people who have been on a three-day Cursillo weekend) gathered at St Mary’s in Ely on Saturday 15th June for the first ever “Regional Ultreya.” Pilgrims from our own diocese were joined by others from St Albans, Peterborough, Norwich and St Edmondsbury and Ipswich; and some from further afield – Canterbury and St Asaph in Wales. After a bring-and-share lunch there was a colourful procession with banners led by Bishop Stephen to the Cathedral Ladychapel for a celebration Eucharist at which the Bishop presided and preached.
The word ‘Ultreya’ derives from the Spanish roots of Cursillo and means simply ‘Persevere!’ or ‘Onward!’ The story is that pilgrims nearing the destination of Santiago di Compostella would meet returning pilgrims on the way (the ‘Camino’) who would encourage them with shouts of ‘Ultreya!’
Diocesan Ultreyas are held in various venues across Ely diocese every few weeks, where cursillistas meet for worship, discussion and mutual encouragement. You can find out more about the Cursillo movement, including how to get involved, on the Ely Cursillo website www.elycursillo.co.uk or the national British Anglican Cursillo Council website at www.anglicancursillo.co.uk