The Story of Emmaus


A Journey with Christ

While they were talking and discussing, Jesus himself came near and walked with them. – Luke 24:15

The walk to Emmaus is an experience of Christian spiritual renewal and formation that begins with a three-day short course in Christianity. It is an opportunity to meet Jesus Christ in a new way as God’s grace and love is revealed to you through other believers.

Following the three-day experience, participants are joined in small groups to support each other in their ongoing walk with Christ.

Through the formational process of accountable discipleship in small groups and participation in the Emmaus community, each participant’s individual gifts and servant-leadership skills are developed for use in the local church and its mission. Participants are encouraged to find ways to live out their individual call to discipleship in their home, church, and community.

The objective of Emmaus is to inspire, challenge, and equip the local church members for Christian action in their homes, churches, communities and places of work. Emmaus lifts up a way for our grace-filled lives to be lived and shared with others.

The Gospel of Luke relates the story of Christ joining two friends on the road from Jerusalem to Emmaus, walking together and sharing their heart’s deepest concerns. The risen Christ walks with them and explains the scriptures: how it was ordained that Christ should suffer and so enter his glory. The illuminating climax of this heart warming experience comes when Christ takes bread and blesses it, he then breaks it and gives it to them. At that moment, the eyes of the two are opened, they recognize him as the risen Christ, and they rush back to Jerusalem to tell the others.

This story from Luke 24:13-35 provides the image for the Walk to Emmaus, an Upper Room program that calls forth and restores Christian discipleship. The 72-hour Emmaus weekend has been described as a short course in Christianity. It enlivens people to the reality of Christ’s love and presence in a way that leads the individual to greater action in witness for Christ. It is designed to make Christ known in the world and equip the participants with the tools and resources they need to keep the freshness and enthusiasm received on the weekend.

What is the purpose?
The sole purpose of the Emmaus movement is to strengthen disciples within the ministry of individual congregations. Emmaus is in partnership with the local church.
Emmaus exists to develop Christian leaders for the local church and the world. The approach seriously considers the model of Christ’s servanthood and encourages Christ’s disciples to act in ways appropriate to being “a servant of all.”

Where does it take place?
A community of Christians from a variety of churches provides a place, leadership, and all the support necessary to conduct the Walk to Emmaus weekend.

How do I attend?
A person who has experienced the Walk to Emmaus sponsors you. This frees you from any personal responsibilities that might distract you while on the experience, and undergirds your 72 hour experience with prayer and other expressions of God’s love. Registration through a ‘Pilgrim Application’ form is required to attend the Walk. You may find a link to the application form here.

What happens after?
Christ’s two companions on the Road to Emmaus returned to Jerusalem to tell other disciples about their encounter with him. A regular, on going time of sharing together our journey with Christ is part of the follow-up to the experience. Celebration occur throughout the year encourages discipleship. Weekly, small-group meetings are open to all persons wanting to grow in accountability for their relationship with Christ.