Category Archives: Spiritual Director

Spiritual Director – March 2020

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“It is the Lord who goes before you. He will be with you; he will not leave you or forsake you. Do not fear or be dismayed.”  – Deuteronomy 31:8

At this time and place we find ourselves in the midst of great uncertainty!  Uncertainty over the Coronavirus and its impact on our health and that of those we love.  Uncertainty over school closings, business failures, loss of employment and income, and changes in our lives we could not have envisioned only a short time ago.  But of all these, as Catholics, the suspension of the celebration of the Eucharist in the Most Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is perhaps the starkest reminder of the situation in which we find ourselves. 

What are we to take from the events of these past several days?  We call on our faith in all things, this is ever important now.  Our Spiritual Works of Mercy can be a comforting help in time of trouble and fear.  Two of them in particular come to mind, “Comfort the Sorrowful” and “Pray for the Living and the Dead.”  These are things we can do: 

  • Lend a listening ear to those who are worried or fearful over the unknown of COVID-19;
  • Write a letter or send a card to someone who is suffering (instead of grouping write Palanca to your group mates and others);
  • Keep a list of prayer intentions, writing down the names of those you are keeping in your prayers;
  • Ask a friend or family member if there is anything you can pray for them about;
  • In prayer, entrust your cares and concerns for those around you to God

A few moments of your time may make a lifetime of difference to someone who is coping with uncertainty.  Spiritual works of mercy lead us to piety, and must sustain us now.  They are a reflection of grace given and faith lived through concrete actions out of love for God and neighbor. 

Then, when we return to the table of Our Lord, we will do so with an increased yearning for that which sustains us all the more – the source and summit of our Christian lives – The Precious Body and Blood of Christ.  He has not left us! 

While we are temporarily unable to receive Him in Sacramental Communion, we may make an Act of Spiritual Communion, as follows:

My Jesus, I believe that You are present in the Most Holy Sacrament.

I love You above all things and I desire to receive You in my body,

my soul, and my whole being.

Since I cannot at this moment receive you sacramentally,

Come at least spiritually into my heart.

I embrace You as if you were already there

And unite myself wholly to You.

Never permit me to be separated from You. Amen.

Dear Lord, Hasten the day we return to Your Altar.

De Colores!

Deacon Wayne

Spiritual Director – December 2019

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“Let them grow together until harvest….”  Matthew 13:30

This passage reminds us of our Christian faith’s more challenging demand – being patient with one another.   As we are often painfully aware, we walk with and share lives with both those who live by faith and share our Christian values as well as with those who do not.   A challenge to be sure, but yet an opportunity at the same time.  These are opportunities to live out our baptismal call, to grow in faith, and to introduce others, by our words and actions, to the joys we have found in Jesus. 

We recognize the need for patience through the study of our environments, we grow in holiness by exercising it, and we show others the way of Christ by embracing it.  Our piety is on full display in our struggle for patience.  Our unsettled world needs us to embrace the struggle.  From patience grows humility, compassion, and peace. 

We may think of patience as a passive effort, but, as we all know, being patient with others, and the disappointments we face is often not easy – it’s hard work.  We ask for God’s grace to help us to be patient, to live in harmony with all, loving and charitably helping those in need of His care and mercy. 

The Christmas Season and the holiday festivities are now behind us.  But the Joy of a fresh awareness of God with us in the Nativity, in the Magi’s journey, and in our Lord’s own baptism lives on – May they remain through the New Year

As Cursillistas filled with renewed spirit, let us enter this new decade of 2020 with hope for a more patient, peaceful, and just world. 

De Colores! 

Deacon Wayne

Lay Director – December 2019

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Welcome to our newest Cursillistas from Belleville Women’s Cursillo #42, and a big thank you to the Cursillo Team led by Cheryl Rajski!   Women’s Cursillo #42 was the first Cursillo to be held at the King’s House Retreat Center in recent memory.  Weekend #42 was also our first Cursillo under the new Step-by-Step Guide.  Despite the new format, all reports from both the candidates and team members indicated that the Cursillo was a huge success demonstrating that we can deliver high-quality Cursillos at the King’s House.  I believe that we are the first diocese in Region IV to hold a Cursillo using the new Step-by-Step Guide.

A final decision has not been made on whether to continue using the King’s House for Cursillo weekends or return to Ruma in the Fall of 2020.  We have reservations at both places for 2020 but we are still working through the details.  

I am pleased to announce that Bernadette Charlton has been selected to join the Region IV Service Team….an excellent choice.  She will be a big asset to the Cursillo Movement in Region IV.   Bernadette welcomes your insights, comments, and suggestions on any Cursillo topic.  She will carry your input to both Regional and National Encounters and return with appropriate feedback.

Love, Joy, Peace, and De Colores!

Bob McCormack

Spiritual Director – September 2019

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May God, the source of our hope, fill your hearts with peace as you believe in Him.  Romans 15:13

We all have those times in our lives when things just seem to be in turmoil, or we are preoccupied over some conflict or task that seems to use up too much of our energy.  In a fast-paced world, where taking time to slow down isn’t in keeping with meeting the demands of the day, turmoil and conflict can take hold of our daily agendas.  It is in these times when we need an example of a disciple at peace, a witness of trust.  We have such an example in Mary.  Her heart was filled with peace as she put her total trust in God.

The Second Vatican Council teaches us that Mary, “While leading an ordinary life among men, one filled with family concerns and labors, she was always, and constantly united to her Son, and cooperated singularly with the work of the Savior in a manner altogether special.” (Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, No 4.)

In this Marian month of October, we turn to Our Lady of the Rosary for her constant help and source of peace.  The rosary gives us a quick study on the Gospel of Christ, and a reminder of who brought God’s saving grace to the world.  In her life she was at peace in her unwavering care and devotion to her Son, even at the foot of the cross—without question, that’s peace in time of turmoil and conflict!  Let us never cease asking for her intercession to the one who is the Prince of Peace.  There’s Palanca in every bead.

De Colores!

Deacon Wayne

Spiritual Director – June 2019

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“He said to them, Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.” Mark 6:31

The days of summer are certainly upon us. Although there’s been much rain and many storms, we’ve also been truly blessed with some wonderful days as well.   Through it all, we need not look far to see how God provides in so many ways.  The beauty of His creation, helping hands in time of need, the gift of family and friends, and our skills, talents, and treasures to care for all are ever present.  Summer is the time God gives us to refresh ourselves from the daily grind of our work and commitments, and to enjoy the fruits of our labor.

As work is a right and blessing in and of itself, we mustn’t forget that rest and relaxation is vital to our mental, physical, and spiritual wellbeing.  The Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church teaches us that “Rest from work is a right.”  As God “rested on the seventh day from all the work which he had done” (Gen 2:2), so too men and women, created in his image, are to enjoy sufficient rest and free time that will allow them to tend to their family, cultural, social and religious life.  (Compendium, No. 284)

A summer retreat is a great way to renew ourselves and draw closer to God.  We have some very fine Catholic retreat centers nearby.  I’ll list a few good ones you may want to consider: 

Kings House Retreat Center in Belleville –

White House Retreat House in South St. Louis –

Chiara Center in Springfield, Illinois –

St. Meinrad Guest House in St. Meinrad, Indiana –

Our work is often demanding and rightly requires our full time and attention.  And surely the work of evangelizing our environments asks us to be ready and alert.  Alert to the many in need of Jesus’ mercy and ready to share what we, too, have received by grace.  If we fail to take care of ourselves, we risk losing our Joy in the great mission Christ has entrusted to us – his disciples in today’s world.

I hope this summer you may find time for some renewal of mind, body, and soul – if for only a brief time, to unwind, and unplug from the stress and busyness of your lives – whether on retreat, vacation, or time spent with loved ones.  Christ and His Church need us to be rested, healthy, happy, and well.  But above all, Joyful!

De Colores! Deacon Wayne Weiler           

Spiritual Director – March 2019

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“Blessed are they who have kept the word with a generous heart and yield a harvest through perseverance.”  Luke 8:15

We find ourselves well into the Lenten season, and in a few short days our spiritual work of increased prayer, fasting and almsgiving will bring us to the day of redemption that Jesus promised us and gave his life for. 

Now we ask ourselves, what impact will this time of Lent have on us after Easter?  Have these days been a time of conversion of heart and mind?  Will we be able to persevere in these works of mercy beyond these 40 days?

This has been a time to focus on those areas where Christ’s light may have become dim or where the darkness of the world has been allowed to seep into our thoughts and actions, where we no longer feel the presence of Jesus in our lives. 

If this is your story, do not despair, you’re in good company.  The apostles, too, fell prey to darkness when things got tough—recall Good Friday.  But as we have been reminded time and time again, He does not turn away from us, quite the opposite is true.  He leads us and others back to him in a new light, in renewed hope for the world—the light and the hope of eternal life that is Easter.  

By their Weekend experience, I have to believe that the 36 new Cursillistas experienced His light and a renewed sense of hope in a profound way.  I know I did! 

Saint Teresa of Calcutta said it best, when she said, “He will always look after us.  So we must cleave to Jesus, our whole life must simply be woven to Jesus.  Jesus in the Mass, Jesus in my Sisters and Brothers, in the poor, and at adoration.  It is the same Jesus.”

Not unlike the apostles, we meet that same Jesus, the Risen Christ, in all circumstances of life.  We will soon hear these accounts in our Eastertide readings.   The Acts of the Apostles give testament to how the apostles, guided by the Holy Spirit, shared His message in a world often unwilling to hear it, very similar to our own time.    We would do well to focus our study on St. Luke’s Acts of the Apostles. 

May we find Him as we go about our daily business, seek him with a generous heart in word and in the sacraments, and continue to persevere in faith and holiness. 

De Colores,

Deacon Wayne

Recommended Reading:  A book by William S. Kurz, SJ, which gives an excellent commentary on The Acts of the Apostles.  ISBN 978-0-8010-3633-0.

Spiritual Director – December 2018

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“…they departed for their country by another way.”  Matthew 2:12

The story of the Magi making their way to find the new born king is one for us to ponder with great hope for our own journey of faith.  Led by a sign from God, a star, they find Jesus the One sent by God to rescue and redeem the world by a message of Love, Joy and Peace. 

The journey of the Magi was surely one of uncertainty and many questions.  What would their search lead them to?  What would they report back to Herod, and what would his response be to what they found?  Who would they meet along the way?  Would there be doubters trying to sway them from what they sought?  Would the star occasionally be overshadowed by clouds?  Would they need to correct their bearings or even change course?  When they arrived would something more be asked of them?

The obstacles the Magi may have encountered are not different from what we encounter in our search for Jesus.  Fear, uncertainty, doubt, distractions and questions can overshadow our signs, our stars.  Likewise, what the Magi found is not unlike what we too find–the pure love and wisdom of God in our Lord Jesus Christ.  They would not encounter a king on a throne, but rather a king in an unusual and humble setting—a manger.  They would meet a king who comes to rule by humility and compassion. 

Scripture tells us that the Magi would not return from this meeting by the same route.  So too is our journey of faith and encounter with Jesus.  When we truly meet Him, we simply cannot return from where we came in the same way.  When we receive Him in the sacraments we’re changed.  When we give of ourselves, and offer our self-gift in the service of others, we too experience an epiphany.  And like the Magi, our pilgrimage takes us on a different road than from where we came. 

We, too, will find Christ if we are willing to search for and recognize the signs from God in our own time that lead us to Him.  As this Christmas Season comes to a close, we’ve once again experienced the great mystery and the reality of Emmanuel—God with us.  May they bring about our own Epiphany in this New Yeara closer walk with the One who comes to save all of mankind!   

De Colores!

Deacon Wayne

Spiritual Director – September 2018

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De Colores to the Fourth Day Community!

Hear ye! Hear ye! We will gather our Fourth Day community for our annual Grand Ultreya and Potluck.  This year’s Grand Ultreya will be on October 27th from 12:00 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. at Saint Liborius Catholic Church located at 911 Sparta Street in St. Libory.  Reserve this date on your calendars, and please spread the word to all cursillistas. If you know someone who does not communicate via e-mail, please share this information.  Thank you!

The harvest is abundant but the laborers are few; so ask the master of the harvest to send out laborers for his harvest.” Luke 10:2

While the autumnal equinox occurred only a few days ago, we’re once again beginning to see the wonders of God’s creating hand in the change of seasons.  The brisk mornings to come, the shorter days, and beautiful fall colors, remind us that it is harvest time.  And we surely can’t overlook the dutiful farmers working well into the night to bring in their crops.  We pray for a bountiful harvest of the fields that all are nourished and fed by their labor.

But we too have a harvest field to tend to.  Daily, many in our communities, whether urban or rural—experience a lack of some of the most basic of resources—things many of us take for granted.  We would do well to use this “harvest” time to reflect on our many blessings and give constant thanks to Our Creator who makes them all possible.

The abundant harvest field require us laborers to put our faith into action.  To look out for the lost, the lonely, and those searching for what we know Our Lord openly and freely gives—Hope.  In doing so we truly express the beauty and meaning of the Christian message, and bring to the world what is so visibly lacking all around us.  We give witness to Jesus and the reign of God, “On earth as it is in Heaven.”

The work of evangelization is a Christian duty, but also a joy.  The Cursillo helps us to recognize this important demand of our faith and so grow in holiness.  What could bring more joy and peace to a disheartened neighbor than for them to gain a glimmer of hope brought to them from a true Christian pilgrim?  Never under estimate the power of your example in a society troubled by doubt, mistrust and disappointment.  May we always be ready and willing to share the benefits from the great harvest of God’s love for us all!

The world and the Church still desperately needs the Christian message to be told.

De Colores!

Deacon Wayne

Spiritual Director – June 2018

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“Be doers of the word and not hearers only…”  James 1:22

We will soon celebrate Independence Day.   A day we give special thanks for the courage and commitment of our founding fathers for the cause of liberty, and to all who have died in defense of that cause.   Our founders understood that an important tenant of a well-ordered and just society would be the freedom of its citizens to express their belief in God and to put that faith into practice in the everyday circumstances of life.   How blessed we are to live in these United States of America where life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness matter.

The Church continues to ask us to remain vigilant in the protection of one of our most cherished, and dare I say threatened, liberties-religious freedom.  The Catholic Bishops of the United States have asked that we reflect on what we may often take for granted—the freedom to express our faith without fear of persecution.  But regrettably, we see far too many instances of a gradual erosion of this precious and protected gift.  And in parts of the world we see painful images of an all-out assault on Christians, for no other reason than their faith in Christ, our Brother and Savior.

The Second Vatican Council document Dignitatis humanae, the Declaration on Religious Liberty, declares, “that the human person has a right to religious freedom. This freedom means that all men are to be immune from coercion on the part of individuals or of social groups and of any human power, in such ways that no one is to be forced to act in a manner contrary to his own beliefs, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association with others, within due limits.   The council further declares that the right to religious freedom has its foundation in the very dignity of the human person as this dignity is known through the revealed word of God and by reason itself. “ (DH #2)

St. James teaches us to be “doers” of the Word.  This requires us to have the courage to put our faith into everyday ACTION.  We can do so by expressing that faith though our system of government.  In letting our voice be heard, voting our conscience, writing to our elected officials, and standing up for the poor and vulnerable we show the impact of our Christian values on a confused and often misled culture.  These are all ways we can bring our faith to the public square for the common good and the good of all of God’s creation.

Let us pray always for those persecuted for their walk with Christ, stand firm in our faith, and embrace the truth as revealed by God.  We are called to live our faith in all facets of life-to hear the word of God and live it by our Piety, Study and Action.  In these we are “doers” of the Word.

To learn more about how to stay informed on the issues and be engaged with our elected officials, I recommend you take a look at the Catholic Conference of Illinois Website at

De Colores

Deacon Wayne Weiler

Spiritual Director – March 2018

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Dear Brothers and Sisters of the 4th Day,

On this Easter Day, for just a moment, reflect on these words from the Gospel of Matthew.

Then they went away quickly from the tomb, fearful yet overjoyed, and ran to announce this to his disciples.”  (Matthew 28:8)

What devastating emotion the women must have felt upon hearing from the angel that Jesus was not in the tomb, where they had personally laid him to rest.  They most surely were afraid of what His missing body meant, while at the same time being overwhelmed by the possibility that what He had promised may have actually happened.  They are in a time between fear and joy, in a time between uncertainty and answers.

We experience these times also, don’t we?  When we get news too hard to handle on our own, when our doubt overtakes our faith, or when our frustrations get the better of our joy.

I suppose it is in the midst of these times, between fear and joy, when we must put our trust in God the most.  Because isn’t this where we come to know His immense love, where our faith grows stronger, and where our hope in Him is found?  For in that hope we rise from the tomb of anxiety and despair and all that gets in the way of our joy.

Our wonderful weekend themes this year help us to see the true joy which comes from “Trusting in Jesus” and “Letting God” take hold of those times in our lives when we struggle for answers or wonder what is coming next.

The Cursillo Journey is one of faith, enhanced by our piety, study, and action.  It is also an experience of resurrection, of sharing our own dying and rising in the real and concrete circumstances of daily living.  This is why we need one another, all of us, to help carry one another’s burdens and share in our joys.

Then Jesus said to them, do not be afraid. Go tell my brothers to go to Galilee, and there they will see me” (Matthew 28:10)

So by the light of the Risen Christ, let us march onward, Ultreya, to our own Galilee, our own environments and beyond.  Then like those who first encountered the empty tomb, “Do not be afraid to run and announce what you have heard and seen.”

Blessed Eastertide to all, and De Colores!

Deacon Wayne