What is Emmaus?
The Gospel of Luke relates the story of the risen Christ appearing to the two disciples who were walking the road from Jerusalem to Emmaus. They were sharing their hearts' deepest concerns when the risen Christ joined them. He explained the scriptures as they walked, and their hearts were warmed. The illuminating climax of the experience was when Christ took the bread, said the blessing, then broke it and gave it to them. The two had their eyes opened and they recognized him! (Luke 24:13-35)
What is the Walk to Emmaus?
The above story provides the image for Emmaus, a program that calls forth and renews discipleship. It is a three-day experience that takes a New Testament look at Christianity as a lifestyle. It is a highly structured weekend designed to strengthen and renew the faith of Christian people, and through them their families, congregations and the world in which they live. Emmaus is a combined effort of laity and clergy with a focus on renewing the church.
What Happens at Emmaus?
The "Walk to Emmaus" is a 72-hour experience. The weekend begins on Thursday evening and ends Sunday evening. At Emmaus, you will spend three busy but very enjoyable days. The weekends are held at the Pine Eden Christian Retreat Center in Hamilton, Ga. You will live and study together in singing, prayer, worship and discussion. Discussions center around fifteen talks given by laity and clergy. These talks present the theme of God's grace, and how that grace comes alive in the Christian community and expresses itself in the world. You'll discover how God's grace is real in your life and how you can live in a life full of His grace.
What Happens After Emmaus?
One of the primary strengths of the Walk to Emmaus is follow-up. Your Emmaus weekend lasts just three days, but you are invited to build on it for the rest of your life. Those who attend the Walk to Emmaus are encouraged to do two things following their weekend: 1) expand their own spiritual lives through study, worship and action; and 2) become more active Disciples of Christ in the world through their churches. To nurture the process of discipleship, the Walk to Emmaus ministry offers several tools. First, small groups, called Reunion Groups, are encouraged to form and meet weekly to support the members' quest for spiritual growth and to uphold one another in prayer and accountability. Second, a monthly praise and worship service, called a "Gathering," is held. Those who have attended the Walk to Emmaus and their guests are invited to sing, pray, worship, and have fellowship with one another.
Who should attend an Emmaus Walk?
The Walk to Emmaus is an ecumenical ministry, and Christians of all denominations are invited and welcome to participate. Emmaus is for the development of Christian leaders who:
- Wish to strengthen their spiritual lives
- May have unanswered questions about prayer, study and sharing their faith
- Are willing to dedicate their everyday lives to God in an ongoing manner
- Have positions of responsibility in the church and the world
How do I Attend?
To attend an Emmaus walk, you must have a sponsor - someone who has previously attended an Emmaus or Chrysalis weekend (our other movement), and who is willing to support you in love, prayer and service up to and during the weekend that you attend. If you know someone who has attended the Walk to Emmaus or Chrysalis, then please feel free to talk to him/her. If you are interested but do not know anyone who could serve as your sponsor, please email us using the Contact Us link on the left-hand site of this page. The Walk to Emmaus is a ministry of The Upper Room. For even more information, visit The Upper Room website.