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The Walk to Emmaus


To watch an introductory video about the Walk to Emmaus, please click here

What is a Walk to Emmaus?

In Luke Chapter 24 we read the story of the risen Christ appearing to two who were walking from Jerusalem to Emmaus. He explained the scriptures and their hearts were warmed. Their eyes were only fully opened to recognize Him when Christ took bread, blessed and broke it then gave it to them. Filled with joy, they rushed back to Jerusalem to share the news with the other disciples.This story provides the image for Emmaus. The program came to South Africa in 1990 from the United Methodist Church in the USA, which in turn developed it from the Spanish Roman Catholic Cursillo de Christlandad (a short course in Christianity) which started in the late 1940s. The Emmaus movement is ecumenical in practice and is seeking to find authentic expression in the cultures of Africa while retaining the wealth of Christian experience from other cultures. God is using Emmaus in Southern Africa to bring reconciliation between races and renewal to Christians and their churches. On a Walk to Emmaus men and women attend separate weekends.

The Purpose of Emmaus

Emmaus aims to inspire, challenge and equip local church members who are in leadership or who are prospective leaders, for Christian action in their homes, churches and places of work. It provides a means to grow together in love, grace and servant hood as members of the Body of Christ.

What happens on an Emmaus Walk?

Each Walk is a 72-hour experience lasting over a weekend from Thursday evening to Sunday evening. This time is spent studying, discussing, worshipping and living together as a Christian community. Fifteen talks, delivered by clergy and laity, form the basis of discussions and projects. The themes of God's grace and how grace comes alive in the Christian Community and expresses itself in the world, are presented and discussed. Participants have opportunities to celebrate Holy Communion daily and begin to understand more fully the presence of Christ in the body of His believers. The prayers and acts of love of a lively support community enhance this.

What happens after the Walk

One of the primary strengths of Emmaus is the follow-up. The weekend lasts 3 days, but the participants are invited to build on it for the rest of their lives by expanding their spiritual lives through study and congregational participation and becoming more active as Disciples of Christ in the world through their home churches. To nurture this discipleship, Emmaus offers specific opportunities such as:

  1. A Reunion Gathering after the weekend, open to all Walk participants
  2. Small "accountability" groups that meet regularly to maintain spiritual accountability.
  3. Community gatherings for fellowship and worship.
  4. Opportunity and training to support and participate through serving on future Walks.

Who should go to Emmaus?

Emmaus is for growing Christians in leadership roles who are open to experience the grace and love of God in new ways through the Christian community. More especially, it is for those who will be committed to make a difference in their church and community as a result of this experience.

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Last Updated: 21 May 2014