What is a Walk to Emmaus?

Empowering Leaders to be the Hands and Feet of Christ

The Walk to Emmaus is a spiritual renewal program intended to strengthen the local church through the development of Christian disciples and leaders. The Walk to Emmaus experience begins with a 72-hour short 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 usually begins Thursday evening and concludes Sunday evening. Men and women attend separate weekends.
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 Upper Room of The United Methodist Church sponsors the Walk to Emmaus and offers it through local Emmaus groups around the world.   The program invites and involves the participation of Christians of many denominations.  The three-day Emmaus experience and the 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.


Who should go to Emmaus?

Emmaus is open to members of any Christian denomination. Emmaus is for the development of Christian leaders who:

  • Are members of a local church
  • Have a desire to strengthen their spiritual lives
  • May have unanswered questions about their faith
  • Understand that being a Christian involves responsibility
  • Are willing to dedicate their everyday lives to God in an ongoing manner

Excerpt from What Is Emmaus?, by Stephen Bryant Published by the Upper Room. 

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What is Chrysalis?

Chrysalis is the growth stage between caterpillars and butterflies. While on the outside it may look like nothing is happening. However, on the inside, a very unique crafted change is taking place. This change, from a caterpillar into a beautiful butterfly symbolizes that through dying of the self, Christ can transform us into new people. Jesus Christ is able to change, re-do, or delete our old selves into a brand new person! However, we must be willing and open in order for Jesus to come into our lives and re-create this new person.


The name Chrysalis was chosen for the Young Adult Walk to Emmaus because it represents a growth of faith in the lives of college students and other young adults. This spiritual growth is vital to help the transformation between teens and adulthood.


Chrysalis is a three-day spiritual renewal retreat that gives participants the opportunity to learn more about their faith and experience Christ's love and grace in a new and exciting way. It also provides the chance to make new friends and establish new commitments in their spiritual journey.


Who Should Attend?

Chrysalis is for the young adult between the ages of 18-25. These individuals can sign up for a Chrysalis no matter where they are in their walk with Christ.


What Happens At Chrysalis?

Participants or butterflies are they are called throughout the weekend, will spend three days surrounded by other young adults from throughout the state. They will experience the love of Christ through the prayers and many acts of service from a loving community of believers. Butterflies will hear talks given by other young adults, older adults as well as clergy. These talks focus on the needs of young adults in today's society and discuss the obstacles that we face as Christian believers. Each day consists of five talks followed by a time of reflection and discussion with your group.


What Happens After Chrysalis?

After the end of your Chrysalis journey, you are invited to become active in your faith and walk with Christ. This can be through your local church, others at school, family and sharing of the Bible and how God's love and grace has been a part of your daily life.

Learn More

Please visit www.alabamayac.com to learn more about Chrysalis and view the upcoming weekends.