Clergy Corner


The Last Leaf


William Sydney Porter, (1862-1910), "O Henry as he is known, was an American writer famous for his short stories. His works are still enjoyed today, and I feel always will be. He wrote about what he saw. He wrote as a passion. A few of his famous works are, "The Gift of the Magi" and "The Ransom of Red Chief". My favorite is his short story called "The Last Leaf".


It's the story about living in a run-down tenement building in a densely populated inner city. People are poor, work is hard to come by, and apartments are poorly heated. Food insecurity is a way of life for everyone. The snows and bitter cold of winter have arrived. "The Last Leaf" concerns Johnsy, a poor young woman who is seriously ill with pneumonia. She is bed-ridden and is being cared for by a relative. The local doctor stops by every now and then to look in on her and see if she is getting any better. Her extended illness, with coughing and fever and loss of appetite, is causing her to lose hope. All her neighbors living in the building are aware of her illness and her resolve to give up any desire to get better.

Directly outside her bedroom window is the brick wall of a building across the alley. A wild ivy vine has grown up the wall and clings to the brick. She believes that when all the leaves on the vine have fallen off, she will die. Her desire to live diminishes with each falling leaf.

Mr. Behrman, a German neighbor and artist of no particular artistic worth, learns about her decision to die when all the leaves on the ivy vine are gone. He goes out one night with his pallet of paints and brushes and a ladder and paints a perfect leaf on the brick under the strong vine. He tricks her by permanently painting a "last leaf" which can't be blown away. During that outing in the middle of the night to paint this fake last leaf, he dies in the snowbank next to his ladder in the alley.

Several days later, with her illness subsiding, Johnsy sits up and asks for a bowl of soup to eat. She is beginning to feel a little better. She asks for the curtains to be drawn back so she can see the brick wall. Her relative is not willing to do this because surely, all the leaves are gone by now. When the relative leaves the room for a minute, Johnsy gets up and opens the curtains. One leaf has remained under a strong vine. She resolves to fight to get better. She has no idea that the last leaf was painted by a gifted artist, his last work of art during his life.

I John 3:2 says, "Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known". We are not what we shall be! The verse continues by saying "Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is pure".

Cursillo gives people hope. Hope on the inside, the place where most folks hide what they are experiencing. Places where hope has long since left, leaving people to feel abandoned and unloved. The candidates will not understand this during the weekend, but slowly, gradually, several days or weeks later, the will examine the vine of their lives and realize that God has painted a last leaf that cannot be blown away. A last leaf to prove He will never leave us as orphans. We belong to Him, and He knows our name!

Cling to that hope and pass it on to others. We do that even when we pray for the success of the weekend. It's a palanca letter in the heart.


God loves you and so do I. De Colores!

Rev. Jack Moody #355







Remember our next weekend is next week September 7th through the 10th. We have 14 candidates, which is awesome, but we need your help. Please consider signing up for one or more of the open time slots as a volunteer on the weekend. It takes not just the team but the entire B/N Cursillo community to deliver a successful weekend. "Christ is Counting on You".

The Secretariat has met to discuss team preparation for the future. Here is where we have landed. Beginning with the next Women's weekend. November 9th through 12th, we will only have 7 weeks of preparation, which means our 1st team mass/meeting will be September 26th. We feel this will stilll give us enough time for all the previews we need to do and will still allow plenty of time for team building and candidate recruiting. Remember applications can be submitted anytime. No need to wait until the meetings start.

If you have any question, please reach out to Larry Mester or Deacon Gary.

Upcoming Diocesan Ultreya


Saturday, October 28 at 6pm


Holy Trinity Church, Bloomington



Volunteers for September Cursillo  


Thank you to those who have signed up to help with the September Cursillo.   Please take a minute to open the signups (using action button in the last section) to verify your date and times.  Please be aware there was a technical issue during a site upgrade in late July\early August that resulted in a few signups being deleted (most have been manually corrected).      


We are still in need of many volunteers for Kitchen, Palanca and Security.  If you have the capacity, please consider helping us fill some of these remaining slots. 

Message from new Mass Coordinator


Thanks to all who contacted me offering to be lectors or ushers at the apostolic hour and clausura Masses, and ultreyas.  As the new Mass coordinator, it has been very helpful to hear from you!  

There is room for more people to get involved, so please, if you would like to have your name added to the list of lectors or ushers for cursillo weekend Masses or ultreyas, take a moment to let me know.
Mary Kay Robbins 
Or text to 815-600-0108 

 Men's Cursillo #1216


September 7 - 10, 2023


Holy Trinity Parish Center, 711 N Main Street, Bloomington, IL 61701




8:40 AM  IDEAL --------------------------------Joe Klingler (Kristie)


10:00 AM  SANCTIFYING GRACE ------------ Fr Doug Hennessy


12:50 PM Lunch


2:00 PM  LAYMAN IN THE CHURCH ---------- Trent Wilkey (Mary)


3:20 PM  ACTUAL GRACE ---------------------Dcn Al Lundy (Sharon)


5:00 PM Dinner


6:45 PM  PIETY ----------------------------------Ray Sheldon (Mary Jane)




8:20 AM  STUDY ---------------------------------Josh Olsen (Cora)


9:35 AM  SACRAMENTAL GRACE -------------Dcn Gary Koerner (Connie)


11:50 PM Lunch


2:30 PM  ACTION ---------------------------------Bill Wielander (Lisa)


3:55 PM  OBSTACLES TO GRACE --------------Rev. Jack Moody


5:15 PM Dinner


6:10 PM  LEADERS -------------------------------Mike O'Donnell (Marie)


7:30 – 9:00 PM Apostolic Hour - Holy Trinity Church




8:10 AM  ENVIRONMENT -------------------------Tod Eagleton (Angie)


8:55 AM  LIFE IN GRACE ----------------------Deacon Dan Froelich (Deb)


9:40 AM  CCIA -------------------------------------Gary Nunnery (Judy)


10:35 PM  TOTAL SECURITY ---------------------Rob Blessing (Rose)


12:00 PM  FOURTH DAY -------------------------Dave Nybakke


12:40 PM Agape Meal


3:00 PM Clausura - Holy Trinity Church


4:30 PM - Dismissal (No Social)




Matt Allen (Chandra)


Steve Beattie (Joan)


Dave Butler (Rita)


Todd Kunze (Theresa)


Joe Rodts (Beth)








Rector ---------------------Rob Blessing (Rose)


Assistant ----------------- Karl Doering (Colleen)


Assistant ----------------- Jim Underhill (Deb)


Technical Asst. ----------- Mike Limacher


Board Advisor ------------ Tom Spicer 


Lay Coordinator ---------- Larry Mester (Mary)




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Bloomington/Normal Cursillo
P.O Box 845
Bloomington, IL 61702