9/23/09

SEATTLE SWEEP, SATURDAY OCTOBER 17

Imagine Christians across a city, cooperating in service one day a year. This happened in Portland; their Season of Service, an unlikely partnership between churches and city, made headlines in USA Today and Reader's Digest. This has also happened in Santa Rosa; one church began Spring Clean with fifty youth and expanded to involve over forty congregations. Could this happen in our city? This year, God is empowering several leaders to begin gathering Jesus' people in Seattle to do the same. It will begin small at first, but the hope is to persist each year, expanding the witness of the Church across our city as we serve our neighbors. Saturday, October 17 is the day. Emmaus Road has been invited to serve at Union Gospel Mission Men's Shelter, painting the third floor. Other church groups will be outside, cleaning up some of the city's neglected parks. Everyone and anyone is welcome to join the Church that day! Contact Pastor Eric Likkel for more details.

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The Emmaus Road Story

In the winter of 1997, we began as a small team of about 10 people, committed to gathering and growing a church that would connect with others like ourselves; people interested in connecting with God, in the person and work of Jesus Christ, but disconnected from the activity of many mainstream congregations. With the financial support of a larger church organization, our pastor was able to work full time with the team in planning, leadership development, and meeting people in the community.

Our first meetings were open discussion forums. We talked about prayer, scripture, spiritual discipline and the issues with which we all struggle. As friends talked to friends, the first group expanded and we multiplied into two.

Inspired by the journey process as a metaphor for spiritual growth, we searched for a name which would reflect that idea. In the resurrection narrative of Luke 24, we found our name "on the road to Emmaus."

After our first worship event on Good Friday of 1997, both groups began to gather together for worship once a month. In various coffee shops and rental spaces, we gradually increased our worship times to twice a month, and in September of 1998 we decided to gather every Sunday. Since the beginning, numerical growth has been gradual but steady, most often through the personal contact of friends talking to friends.

Today, several small groups continue to meet for open discussions on prayer, scripture, and the process of encountering God in daily life; we all gather for worship each week.