We are the 2018 Emmaus Immersion program. Our team consists of 7 pilgrims, and we will be spending the next four months in community, dedicating our lives to the Lord. Our first month is spent in the States, with times of formation, team-building, and campus missions. At the end of September, we'll embark for the Holy Land, bound for three months to experience, learn, and surrender our lives in the place where our Lord once walked. These blogs are intended to keep you all up-to-date on what the Lord will been doing over the coming months!
On September 3rd, we arrived at the Community of the Beatitudes in Denver, CO. The week began at the silent mountain retreat cabins with times of prayer, study, and the beginning of community life!
After the first few days in the cabins, we travelled to the Beatitudes main house in Denver for days of prayer, meals, and manual tasks, overflowing with the love of Christ. It has been an immense blessing to be welcomed by the Community and to share in their life.We also got the chance to visit the local Byzantine Church to become more educated in the Byzantine Divine Liturgy.
On Friday, we celebrated our first Shabbat meal together (the first of many!) The Community hosts Shabbat dinners to honor and pray for our Jewish brothers and sisters, and to enter into the reality of the customs Christ experienced on earth. We sang Hebrew songs with Father Anthony on the guitar and Karalyn on the drum, and had a delicious meal. It was a wonderful experience as a team and to grow in our knowledge of the Jewish culture.
We also had an exercise-filled day on Saturday. Young lay members of the community taught us Israeli dances in the park in the afternoon, and we put our lessons into practice in the evening. We are looking forward to knowing these dances by heart so that we can dance in the street and communities in the Holy Land!
We bid a sad farewell to Denver as, after Sunday morning parish Mass, we departed for the next three weeks of road-tripping across the midwest! This includes missions to college campuses, sharing and teaching liturgy, witnessing to students, and encountering the beauty of Christ. There have been so many wonderful memories of our growth together not only as a team, but in ourselves, as we follow a routine of Hebrew and Catechesis lessons, adoration, and reflection.
We have been to the University of Nebraska-Kearney, University of Nebraska-Lincoln, Kansas State University, University of Kansas, Emporia State University, Northwest Missouri State, Benedictine College, University of Iowa, and Minnesota State-Mankato. We will be visiting more schools in Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin! The students, missionaries, and hosts along the way have been so interested in our unique mission, and we see in them such openness for spiritual growth (and learning some dances), as well as the desire to experience the Holy Land themselves! Thank you to all for such warm welcomes!
We will be departing out of Chicago at the end of the month for our flight to Tel Aviv. Please bless us with prayers for safe travels, and the additional encounters we have with students.
If you would like to see descriptions of our 2018 Fall missionaries, please click here!