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Via de Cristo

Good morning, my name is Ed Kutay.  My wife Janet and I, and our 2 children, Keith, 18 and Kristin, 15 worship at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Naperville, IL.  I made Roman Catholic Cursillo #324 in March of 1988 at the Villa de Chantel in Rock Island, IL, where I sat at the Table of John.

I have to start out by telling you how excited and yet at the same time intimidated I am to be here today, sharing with all of you on a topic that is very near and dear to my heart.  I’m excited because I have a personal commitment to maintaining the integrity of the Cursillo Method.  Indeed there are some in the Living Water VdC community who think I am a real ‘stick in the mud’ when it comes to putting on weekends.  That is because I’ve been known to shoot down ideas about adding all sorts of ‘neat things’ to weekends.  The reason for my feelings of intimidation is because the person who was instrumental in instilling this commitment to the integrity of the Cursillo is here in this audience today.  The ultimate challenge is when it comes time for the student to step up and speak before his teacher.

 Allow me to share a story about that with you.  About 10 years ago I was very privileged to be called to help begin the Living Water Via de Cristo Secretariat in the Quad Cities.  We were blessed to be taken under the wing of the Good News VdC Secretariat from Ottawa Lake, Michigan (where there is of course no lake!).  As we were preparing to put on our #1 weekends my family had the privilege of putting up Luther Piel and Greg Steele for one of our team training weekends.  Over the course of the next 36 hours, I received the most intensive indoctrination you can ever imagine in the principles of the Cursillo Method.  I know that that time was led and guided by the Holy Spirit because to this day, I can remember very clearly most of what these two pillars of the Lutheran Via de Cristo movement taught me.  I hope to share a little of that knowledge with you today, without embarrassing myself in front of the master.


 In order to understand any discussion about the Dynamics of the Via de Cristo Weekend, I believe we must first start with the basics and understand the purpose for even holding a weekend.   Some of these basics include the understanding that Via de Cristo is a movement of the Church.  It uses its own method, the Cursillo method, to make it possible to live what is fundamental to being a Christian.  It attempts to make it possible to live a Christian life in a natural way, supported by a Christian community in every environment.  Its immediate purpose is to strengthen the conviction and understanding of what is fundamental to being a Christian.  The goal of Via de Cristo is to restore all things to Jesus Christ.

The 3-day weekend is important because it provides participants with the opportunity to encounter God.  But, of even greater importance is the desire to motivate them to follow Him in their daily lives throughout their Fourth Day.  The 3-day weekend is the set-up for living a grace-filled Fourth Day.

The weekend is not intended to convert or manipulate the participants toward some high experience or feeling.  It is critically important that we train our teams to see themselves as nothing more than instruments in God's hands.  It is not our weekend; it is God's weekend.  We are simply vehicles of His Grace.  One of the anxieties that every new team member feels is the desire to make things happen faster.  The fear that the participants aren't "getting it".  We must constantly be reminded on the weekend; its God's time not our time.


 Now let’s get into the discussion of the Dynamics on the Weekend.  The team’s mission for the 3-days is to share with the new participants a vision of faith, so that the new pilgrim's own perspective on life will change.  The Cursillo method has built into it a number of elements called "dynamics".  Dynamics are forces, which cause things to happen, forces, which cause movement or motion.  A dynamic is a force that moves something.  Everything we do on a weekend is designed to “move” the participants spiritually; not physically, not emotionally…spiritually.  In all actuality the only thing that moves the pilgrim spiritually is the work of the Holy Spirit.  All we try to do is provide the time, the place and the atmosphere in which the Holy Spirit can work.  What results is true spiritual growth. 

 No one can make a person grow in faith.  Only the individual can do this by allowing the Holy Spirit to enter into them.  The dynamics that occur on that weekend, both positive and negative, will determine how accepting each person will be.  Let's now take a close look at the events as they occur during the 3-days to get an understanding of the dynamics that are taking place.

 On Thursday night at the start of the weekend, every candidate is at a different place in his or her faith life, in his or her faith journey.  Everyone is different.  How are we going to get all of these individuals to finish at the same place on Sunday night?  That is the team’s challenge.  The answer to this question can be found in 3 things; solid team training, emphasis on positive dynamics and going slowly, allowing God to work in His time.

 The first dynamic is something called CIRCLES.  We work in circles on the weekend.  The objective is to expand the circle surrounding each candidate as the weekend progresses.  On Thursday night the circle is about 18" wide, or about the diameter of the “personal space” surrounding each person.  The key to expanding this circle is the team.  The team must be an already formed community before it gets to the weekend.  That is one of the goals of team training.  That is why it is so important to be at these training sessions, even if this is your 100th team!  On Thursday night when the team arrives, it must be a formed community.  On Thursday night the team members spread out among the new pilgrims, and as a result, we form another larger community at the weekend.  This larger community is developed in the same way as we did on the team training.  We have discussion, liturgy, and understanding one another by sharing with one another.

 The team that comes to the weekend on Thursday night is the real core in forming this Christian community.  On Friday the circle slowly expands to the diameter of the candidates table.  On Friday night at the Decuria we expand the circle to the size of the Rollo Room.  On Sunday night the circle expands to include the VdC community and in the Fourth Day the circle expands to the whole world.

 There are also NEGATIVE DYNAMICS that can hinder or stop the circles development.  Negative dynamics can shrink the circle back to the size of the individual.  A negative dynamic is anything that hinders spiritual growth by turning someone off or reducing their openness, thus inhibiting the activity of the Holy Spirit.  I have a story to illustrate this.  A very dear friend shared this with me when she made her original weekend.  Way back in the dark ages, weekends were held at a 100 year old building that used to be a girl’s Catholic boarding school called the Villa de Chantel.  A wonderful place that we grew to love during our first 4 weekends, but not very well appointed with creature comforts, to say the least.  On Thursday night after just arriving, Renee listened to one woman go on and on complaining to her about what a terrible place the Villa was and how she hated staying there.  Well, she was shocked when the following day this same woman was standing at the podium presenting her Rollo.  Poor Renee didn’t hear a word as she struggled to reconcile the complaining she heard from her mouth the night before with the words she was hearing now.   This event very nearly ruined the weekend for her!

 So, what is the lesson for us?  As team members the weekend begins the moment the first candidate arrives on Thursday night.  The team is there to create the idea that this is a good place to be, no matter what the reason that they have come.

 Another important dynamic on the weekend is the Hearing Our Name.  This begins as we hear our name at the Send Off and are handed our nametags.  We hear our name again as we are seated at our tables on Fri. morning.  Each time the calling of our name is followed by cheering and clapping.  We hear our name constantly during the weekend too.  Each time we stand up we are asked to introduce ourselves and this is followed by clapping. This helps us feel a part of the group; part of the family, part of God's family and indeed called personally by Christ.  So Rector’s and Rectora’s encourage your team’s to try to learn everyone's name and call them by name.  It is an important positive dynamic.

On Thursday night, after the introductions and the Rector's opening remarks, there is a singing session.  Singing is another important dynamic.  But like all the dynamics on the VdC weekend it builds slowly.  This is a key point!  Everything that occurs on the weekend builds slowly.  It must be that way so we don’t leave anyone behind.  The weekend builds slowly from Thursday night to Sunday night.  Each day starts off slowly and builds throughout the day.

 The dynamic of singing is no different.  Some people will hold back when they are singing, but gradually they will get into the spirit, and by Sunday they'll probably be the loudest singers.  But we have to begin slowly and draw them out.  We begin with light generic songs to make the candidates feel comfortable on Thursday night, especially for the men’s weekend.  (For some guys, “I Am a C” might be pushing the envelope a little too hard!)  On Fri. the songs should be songs of praise to God and they learn De Colores.  On Saturday the music reveals Jesus Christ and on Sunday they should be spiritual in nature.  Another important part of the dynamic of singing is to teach the new participants the Serenade songs before Saturday night.  This requires a lot of humility on the part of the Music Chas, who may want to present their entire repertoire.  But it is far more effective to have repeated the Serenade songs several times before Saturday night than to have introduced dozens of new songs to the participants.

 As with everything else we do on the weekend, there is a gradual building in the songs and the dynamic of singing.  The team members are always the leaders.  They take the lead in the prayers, the singing, in moving from one place to another and in answering the bell promptly. We are the moving force.  The new participants will follow the lead set by the team.

 On Thursday night, after the Rector's remarks and the introduction, we enter into a time of silent retreat.   Silence begins.  To quote from the Leader's Manual:

 "The aim of the spiritual retreat is to awaken the moral conscience of the candidate and make him/her feel the desire to be in God's grace as a result of careful self-examination."

 The whole theme is to know yourself, to look deep inside yourself, and to check up on your personal relationship with God. 

 Silence is a very important dynamic of the weekend.  When the silence begins, we go to the chapel for the meditations and the Way of The Cross.  It is in this silence that the participants enter into intimate conversation with God.  Can anyone think of a negative dynamic that frequently occurs during the time of silent retreat?  [Team members who do not maintain silent retreat].  Remember, that this is for the team members, too.  Good training on this topic teaches the team to be an example for the candidates in keeping silence.  Talking, laughing and carrying on at this time is a very negative dynamic.  The team needs to be a leader in the retreat phase of the weekend.  We should use this time to prepare ourselves, as well.


 Let’s move now into Friday.  Friday morning is a continuation of the silent retreat.  Here again the team sets the example for the new pilgrims.  The silence continues to bring the candidate face to face with him/herself. 

  The morning communion service is a more subdued liturgy.  It's a little more like they've been experiencing in their own churches.  The reason for this is that the liturgy like everything else on the weekend builds with the community.  As the new pilgrims gradually form into community, the unity and love that they experience can be expressed more fully in each day's liturgy.   Liturgy builds just like everything else throughout the 3-days.

  After the morning service, the silence is broken and you go into breakfast.  At the breakfast table you're to get to know the person across from you.  Have him/her do the talking.  This is just part of the dynamic of getting to know each other better, of building community.  Team member’s should spread out and sit with the new pilgrims. 

Breakfast, as well as every meal, ends with a joke session.  The Joke Session involves another positive dynamic.  Telling a joke gives someone a chance to speak in front of people.  The jokes also draw people together with the laughter.  The problem we sometimes have with jokes is keeping them clean.  This is another job for the team members.  If someone tells a joke on the raw side, raise your hand and get it back on the right track.  Dirty jokes diminish the spiritual atmosphere of the weekend.  Our rule is that if it isn't appropriate for your 4th grade Sunday school class then don't use it.

At the first session in the morning, the candidates are assigned to tables in the Rollo room.  The table leaders should concentrate first of all on building community at the table to which they are assigned.  This is the first opportunity for the pilgrims to expand their circle.  As the weekend progresses, a feeling of community among the entire group will begin to grow. 

  Then the first talk begins - IDEAL.  Most of the talks are limited to a half-hour.   Why do you think that is?  The reason for the half-hour length is part of the dynamic of the Community Building.  The most important aspect of the Community Building Dynamic occurs during the discussion at the table.  They are sharing ideas and they are building upon one another's ideas.  Very often, what the participants say to one another during the discussion is more important to the group than what was said by the Rollista.  So it isn't really necessary to give a long talk.  The real purpose is to stimulate good discussion at the tables. I heard of one weekend where they actually eliminated the discussion to catch up on time and make more time for posters!!  This definitely runs counter to the Dynamics of the Cursillo Method.

  Another dynamic deals with Talking.  Many candidates are fearful about talking, especially about something as personal as their faith, and especially before a large group.  So, we begin at the table in small group discussion.  Even there, some need to be encouraged to open up.  Another negative dynamic is a Table Leader who dominates the conversation.  The best Table Leaders encourage others to talk and are good listeners.  They ask thoughtful questions that keep the discussion focused on the topic of the Rollo.  The dynamic of Talking expands to the entire rollo room during the Decuria.  The participant is challenged to speak before the entire Rollo Room.  Finally, they are challenged to talk before the entire VdC community at the Clausura.  Again, a progressive movement; a critical dynamic.

  The first day of the Via de Cristo gives the new pilgrim a low-key opportunity to think about his/her ideal.  The first rollo is almost secular in tone.  Following the Ideal Rollo is Habitual Grace in the morning and Laity after lunch. The message of the first day is the basis for the rest of the weekend: "accept the Christian ideal".  The candidate is told clearly what a great thing he/she is called to, but is not directly urged to it.  But then, the low-key approach changes with two "shocks", the Palanca letters and the Piety Rollo.  The candidate is brought up short and made to realize that he/she is going to have to respond in a way they probably never considered before.  The Piety Rollo is intended to provide a summary of the first day by showing a life, which is dedicated to living the life of grace fully and unreservedly.  It is the force of this picture that produces the challenge for the new pilgrim.

  The concept of palanca is introduced during the Actual Grace rollo on Friday afternoon.  This is a very high point for many of the new pilgrims.  I know it was for me on my weekend.  Perhaps up to this time some of them hadn't gotten a thing out of the weekend, and all of a sudden this palanca thing comes along.  They begin to realize that the Holy Spirit is alive and that He's working through other people.  This is certainly a new experience for them, and sometimes it kind of gets to them.  Especially those persons who may want to go off by themselves because they can't stand to be emotional in front of others.  This is when we must show great love; allowing the Spirit to work.

  Remember, you're not trying to force anyone to get with it through the palanca letters.  Let them be free to respond, as they want to.  Remember that it is the Spirit who is working through the people who wrote the letters at this particular time.  So let the Spirit work, as He will.  We are not looking for emotional dynamics.  We're looking for a relaxed atmosphere.  So if you see that someone has a particular problem controlling his/her emotions at this time, it may be best just to let them alone.

  One of the main points of resistance in the new pilgrim is the fear that  "they are trying to convert me."  At this point in the weekend, the candidate doesn't want to be converted.  So don't force him/her.  Let the Spirit work.  It is God who changes the lives of people.  Perhaps the most characteristic mistake on this day, Friday, is the team member saying too much!

Let me pause for a moment to say a little more about Negative Dynamics.  We try to help move the new pilgrims spiritually.  Don't confuse spiritual movement with emotions.  We often confuse emotions and spirituality, thinking that increased emotionalism means increased spirituality.  The two are not linked together and in fact emotionalism can hinder spiritual growth.  Why is that, you might ask?  Emotionalism cannot be sustained.  Growth in spirituality leads to a deeper relationship with Jesus Christ.  Emotionalism does not.

In reality there are both spiritual and emotional dynamics taking place.  Sometimes spiritual growth is accompanied by deep emotionalism.  We need to recognize that it is true spiritual growth that we want to accomplish.  Negative dynamics slow things down, they close doors, they turn people off.  Can you name some examples of Negative Dynamics.  Things such as Fear of change, Secrecy, Fatigue, Being over-regimented, Bragging, Complaining.   A very dangerous one is Theological Error.  Intimidation.  As a team we must be aware of these negative dynamics.  The team is often the source of these problems.  Good training is essential to avoid this.

  Up to this point on Friday we're just trying to build community slowly.  If we try to build it too fast, we could lose some of the participants.  We would like them all to run at the same pace, and get to the finish line at the same time.  We don't want to leave anybody behind on Sunday night.  So we build community gradually.  If there is a person who's a bit slow in reacting to the weekend, he/she may feel isolated and outside of the community.  So we need to keep everybody flowing at a rate they can all follow.  In other words, the weekend should be geared to the slowest candidate if this is at all possible.  The safest way to do this is to keep the weekend subdued throughout Friday until after the PIETY Rollo. 

  The chapel visit following the PIETY Rollo brings out the seriousness of the Via de Cristo weekend.  The new pilgrims realize that they are not there just for a fun weekend, but to make a commitment to Jesus.  So commitment is the theme of this chapel visit. 

  After dinner on Friday night is the Decuria, sometimes mistakenly called the poster party.  Remember from our discussion before, there are several key dynamics at work here.  This is a good time to open things up a little, but we still need to maintain control of the situation so we don’t lose anyone.   Everyone experiences a community feeling through the sharing, the clapping, the laughing and through relating with the entire group.  We are encouraging the pilgrims to widen their circles.  The other dynamic is that of talking.  We are encouraging everyone to participate by presenting either the discussion or the poster.  Table leaders should try to get everyone to take a turn, but don't force anyone.  Let the Spirit work in the shy ones.  Experienced Table leaders know how to draw the shy ones out in a caring way.


  On Saturday the liturgy can be a high point.  This liturgy can blend in very beautifully with the sacraments talk -- DAY IN THE LIFE.  At the morning worship we introduce the abrazzo or holy hug at the sharing of the Peace.  Do you think there is some Dynamic at work here?  The abrazzo is a true expression of Christian love and brings us to the Dynamic of Touching. 

  Touching can be a very ‘touchy subject’, especially for macho guys like me.  There has to be cautious movement in this area too.  On Thursday a brief handshake is about all the touching some people may want.  Be respectful of that.  In fact, speaking from the perspective of the Men’s weekend, it can be a very negative dynamic to do anything that will challenge each individual’s 18-inch circle.  Throughout Friday the handshakes should become a little warmer and more enthusiastic.  On the men's weekends it is really great when the chas offer warm smiles, extended hands and slaps on the back to everyone while they are holding doors and people are passing through.  This gradual movement helps to make the abrazzo more natural and comfortable by Saturday morning.  But, do not force a candidate to participate in the abrazzo. Otherwise, it can become a negative dynamic.  So, don't force it.

  Just as the weekend builds slowly, each day begins slowly and builds toward the end.  The second day is again a presentation of the life of grace, of true piety, but it no longer stresses the idea of the relationship with God.  Rather, it patiently explains how it is done, or, how the pilgrim can do it.  It explains what each can do to form themselves in the Christian ideal to become more Christian.  The talks tell what to do and how to do it.  Although the talks urge the candidate to do things he/she has not done, the main way they urge is by showing the value of these things for his/her own life and the lives of others.

The second day focus is primarily individual and personal, but it is summed up in a moving way with the inspiring talk, Leaders.  This presents the picture of one who is putting all he/she has into being a Christian and it also reveals the success such a one can have.  At this point, the candidate knows what he/she must be like and what he/she has to do to take his/her place in the operation of a Christian Community in Action.  

  Prayer in and of itself is a dynamic.  They heard about Palanca on Friday, how people are sacrificing on their behalf to move them to a higher spiritual plain.  Most of the new participants come to the weekend with private prayer as their only experience.  Throughout the weekend they speak prayers beginning with the Lord’s Prayer on Thursday night and then reading prayers from the Pilgrim’s Guide throughout the weekend.  Every meal begins and ends with someone offering up a prayer of blessing.  But the real dynamic comes on Saturday afternoon during the Altar Visits.  This opportunity intentionally comes after the table community has been formed.  The new Pilgrim is challenged to speak an open prayer before the group.  This can be one of the most powerful moments in the weekend for some.  I have witnessed several times how God softened the heart of a hard man during an Altar Visit.  On my original weekend one of the participants was a Native American Indian.  Jim was a very stoic man about 6’5” who didn’t say a word for 2 days until he shared a prayer at our Altar Visit.  He broke down and cried and gave his heart to Christ This can be a very moving time for the new pilgrim as he or she prays to their Lord in a new and very personal way.  One negative dynamic to beware of?  Team members using up all the words.

  On Saturday night the Decuria tends to break loose more.  Everyone is in a wild mood, and it's hard to get people to bed.  Popcorn and snacks can be offered after the closing devotions to give everyone a chance to unwind.  However, it is important to get everyone to bed to avoid fatigue.  Fatigue is a negative dynamic.


  On Sunday, the third day is an explanation of what is involved in being a Christian leader, an apostle of Christ.  But the focus is not on the individual as much as on his/her presence in the world and his/her relationship with other Christians, particularly in a Christian community in action.  It fills out the vision of how the Church and individual apostles can function in the modern world.  The third day presents the Via de Cristo method for operating successfully in the environment by joining hands with others.  The Leader’s Manual puts it like this, "a handful of determined, enthusiastic, dedicated persons who group themselves around Jesus with the aim of spreading the Christian ideal and translating it into works".  At the end of the day, no one should doubt what has been said is possible, and in fact is being done.  Each candidate will have seen a picture of what it means to have a Christian community in action and they will know that there is a successful one that they can become part of.

  But on Sunday there is a tendency for the spirit of the weekend to level off or to drag.  Most everyone is tired, the mechanics of the service sheet aren't very exciting.  This is where the team again comes in to take the lead.  Table leaders must keep taking notes.  You keep discussing.  You encourage them.  In the rector’s notes from Saturday night's team meeting our manual reminds us this is everyone’s opportunity to 'witness like mad’.

  As the day progresses the emphasis shifts to their Fourth Day.  The group reunion and 4th Day Program is explained during the Rector's talk – Total Security in the Fourth Day.  The Table Leaders job is to encourage them and guide them in making the group reunion.  Tell them how much it means to you.  And be sure that when you go to the weekend, the group reunion means something to you so you can be very honest.  A measure of the success of this weekend depends on how well the new pilgrims attend their group reunions.  The most important medium of formation in the Via de Cristo movement is the Fourth Day Program. 

If at this point in the weekend someone appears to still be in a shell, off by him/herself, not a part of the community, just let them be.  Don't try to force yourself on them.  By this time, if a person has not opened him/herself to the group, any attention or concern you show toward them will only turn them further inside themselves.  Wait for the closing and let the Holy Spirit work.  It takes some candidates this long to get the message of the weekend, if they're going to get any message at all.  We can never force a spiritual response from anyone.  God always respects a person's freedom to love Him or not.  We, too, must respect the person's freedom to open them self to the Spirit, to become part of the community, or to choose not to. 

  At the Clausura the new pilgrims begin to realize that they are part of a larger Christian community and that people really care.  They see that living the Fourth Day is possible because these people who come to the closing are living it. 

  At the closing the emphasis is on injecting the new pilgrims back into the community and on their testimony.  The dynamic of Talking is culminated in the new pilgrim standing up before the entire VdC community to boldly share his or her faith.  The people who come to the closing come for the candidates.  We always enjoy meeting some of our friends there, but the main reason we're at a closing is to welcome these new participants into the larger Christian community.  The team plays a very minor role at the closing.


 In closing, I want to emphasize the point that every team member is there for the candidates.  For no other reasons does one go to the weekend, but for the new pilgrims.  As team members then, everyone needs to understand their role, must be convinced about it, must be committed to the task, and must perform it in the spirit of love, in the spirit of giving one self totally to the candidates.   One of the Positive Dynamics is the concept of “Loving Through Serving”.  Bringing Chas and Kitchen Crew out for repeated applause and clapping breaks this dynamic.  The humility of being a servant is lost.  Chas should simply be introduced; they are not to be thanked.

 At the beginning of this presentation, I mentioned that some of the members of my VdC community view me as a ‘stick in the mud’ when it comes to putting on weekends.  If there is one thing that stands out in my mind from the training I received from Luther and Greg, it is summed up best in this saying…

”The less you know about Via de Cristo/Cursillo, the more you want to change it;

 The more you know about Via de Cristo/Cursillo, the less you want to change it.”

  What does this mean?  Luther told me you could put on an effective weekend with just three essential ingredients; 14/15 Rollos, their Discussions and Worship & Communion.  Every time we add another “neat thing” we take away from the true essence of the Cursillo method.  Whenever the next Rector or Rectora wants to add something new, we have to ask ourselves, “is this going to enhance the Positive spiritual dynamic that leads to real growth in faith?  Or is this merely eliciting an emotional response that will not be sustained in the Fourth Day?”  Remember, anything you do 2 weekends in a row becomes a ‘tradition’.  Before you know it you are cutting out discussion time to make room for emotional dynamics.

I truly believe that the Cursillo Method is the inspired work of the Holy Spirit of God, given to humankind in Majorca, Spain.  It is worthy of our respect and study to insure that we do not block the work of the Holy Spirit to draw people into a closer relationship with God.


 For the remainder of the time, I would like you to huddle up into some small groups and discuss amongst yourselves a couple of things;

(1) Share some examples of how you have seen either Positive or Negative Dynamics impact new participants on a weekend.

(2) Are there some bad habits or negative dynamics that have crept their way into your weekends that you feel could be eliminated through better team training?

CIRCLES 18” diameter or the size of one individual The size of the Rollo Room Table The size of the Rollo Room As big as the world in the 4th Day
HEARING OUR NAME Part of our family Part of Church Family Part of the Family of God Called by Jesus Christ
SINGING Thur.  Light generic songs Fri.  Songs of Praise to God Sat. Songs about Jesus Sun. Spiritual in nature
SILENCE Silent Retreat-get to know yourself Way of the Cross Chapel meditations  
LITURGY Fri. Low key Sat. Builds with community Sun. Open and expressive  
JOKE SESSION Community builds with laughter Speaking in front of others    
TALKING Begins at table discussion Expands during Decuria Culminates in Clausura sharing Sharing of faith with the world
TOUCHING Handshakes Warm, enthusiastic handshakes Slap on the back, touch on shoulder The Abrazzo

Private prayers


Praying together as a group Spoken prayer in Altar Visit Leading prayers



INTIMIDATION Anything that puts people on the defensive
CONFUSION Appearing unorganized, wasting time, arguments
SECRECY Whispering, giving evasive answers to questions, not being honest
BRAGGING Failing to show humility, lacking a servants heart; in Rollos, discussions, etc.
FATIGUE Skipping breaks, getting candidates to bed too late
THEOLOGICAL ERROR Misquoting the Bible.  Making erroneous statements.  Example; …when I became a Christian on my Via de Cristo weekend.
BORING ROLLOS Long lectures, failing to focus on outline for this Rollo, complicated sharing, trying to be too clever.
OVER-REGIMENTED Overly controlled, insufficient freedom, giving the impression of ‘brain washing’
FEAR OF CHANGE Fear that the Team is trying to change them, fear that they will have to change their life, fear that they will have to do something uncomfortable
COMPLAINING Team members complaining about accommodations, meals, etc.


Doing or saying things simply to elicit an emotional response



  The Rollos, like all the other dynamics and events of each day start off low key, dealing with intellect or training and gradually build using more and more sharing more focused on the heart.

  The First Rollo of each day deals with the Intellect:

#1.  IDEAL

#2.  STUDY


The Second Rollo each day deals with Living the Life of Grace:




The Third Rollo of each day deals with the Will:

#1.  LAITY #2.  ACTION #3.  CCIA  

  The Fourth Rollo of each day deals with Obstacles to Living the Life of Grace:

(out of sequence)

The Fifth Rollo of each day deals with matters of the Heart and Dedicating Oneself to Christ:

(out of sequence)  














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