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Introduction

The Walk to Emmaus experience begins with a 72-hour course in Christianity, comprised of fifteen talks by lay and clergy on the themes of God’s grace, disciplines of Christian discipleship, and what it means to be the church.  The course is wrapped in prayer and  Meditation, special times of worship and daily celebration of Holy Communion.  The “Emmaus Community,” made up of those who have attended an Emmaus weekend, support the 72-hour experience with a prayer vigil, by preparing and serving meals, and other acts of love and self giving.  The Emmaus Walk typically begins Thursday Evening.  Men and Women attend separate weekends. The 3-day journey is held at the Montfort Spiritual Center,  Saxon Avenue, Bay Shore, NY.

During and after the three days, Emmaus leaders encourage participants to meet regularly in small groups.  The members of the small groups challenge and support one another in Faithful living.  Participants seek to Christianize their environments of family, job and community through the ministry of their congregations.  The three-day Emmaus Experience and follow-up groups strengthen and renew Christian people as disciples of Jesus Christ and as active members of the body of Christ in mission to the world.

The Upper Room, a ministry unit of United Methodist Discipleship Ministries, sponsors the Walk to Emmaus and offers it through local Emmaus groups around the world.  Although connected through The Upper Room to the United Methodist Church, The Walk to Emmaus is ecumenical.

THE WALK TO EMMAUS AND LUKE 24:  13-35

The Resurrection story told in Luke 24: 13-35 illustrates what happens for the Pilgrims on the Walk to Emmaus.  Faith is re-explained, grace is re-experienced, Christian community is realized, and the body of Christ is renewed through the revitalization of church members commitment to Christ.                                                                                                                                                          

Faith is re-explained as the two disciples Walk to Emmaus.  Jesus joins them as a stranger and explains to them the meaning of the scriptures concerning himself.  Likewise, during the Walk to Emmaus, our faith is re-explained through fifteen talks and discussions, which address important facets of God's grace and Christian discipleship.

Grace is re-experienced upon arrival in the village of Emmaus, when the disciples recognize Jesus in the breaking of the bread and remember how their hearts had burned within them as they walked with him on the road.  Likewise, during the Emmaus three days, grace is re-experienced through rich worship services, daily Holy Communion, the support of a caring Christian community, and other expressions of God's love.

Christian community is realized when the disciples return immediately to the little Christian community in Jerusalem to share their story and to hear their friend's stories of having seen the risen Christ.  Likewise, on the Walk to Emmaus people live in Christian community for three days and have opportunities to share their lives in fun-filled moments as well as serious moments, small-group discussions, common meals, singing, worship and daily participarion in the sacrament of the Lord's Supper.

The body of Christ is renewed when the disciples together become the body of Christ in the world, supporting one another over the long haul as they walk in the spirit of Jesus and share the gospel of grace with those around them.  Likewise, during the Emmaus event, the body of Christ is renewed as church members experience revitalization of their commitment.  Their renewed discipleship is sustained after the three-day Walk with a strong follow-up emphasis that we call the "Fourth Day."  This emphasis involves participation in church, and in small, weekly support groups (Group Reunions) for mutual encouragement, guidance, and accountability.