From the Desk of the Community Lay Director:  

The first two months of this year I wrote about commitment and passion. This month I want to write about Sponsorship. Sponsorship works hand in hand with commitment and passion.

We were not able to hold the Spring Walks due to a lack of applications. It is most regrettable that we could not have the Walks, but the board believed it was the right thing to do. We want to have the applications in first, then that will tell us it is time for a Walk. 

So what do we do now?

First, pray about who God wants you to approach.

Then, talk to people. Ask them if they have heard about the Walk to Emmaus. Ask if they are looking to deepen their relationship with God. Ask if they are open to receiving God’s blessings.  

All they have to do is fill out an application! That’s it. 

Then send the applications to the Registrar. Don’t send any money yet. We just need the applications. 

Then, when we have a good amount of applications, we will pick dates and send out letters of invitation.

We will send out the first 30 letters. After two weeks, if we have received 25 "Yeses," then we send out the next 5 invitations, and so on, until we have 30 "Yeses."  

Then we have 2 full Walks! We won't have to worry about scrambling to get the minimum to have a Walk.

When your Pilgrim is invited and has accepted, that's when you send in the application money.

Currently, the Sponsorship fee is $130.00. We should not ask the Pilgrim to pay this.The sponsor should pay this for the Pilgrim as a gift.

But you don’t have to do this yourself.

You can have 2, 3, or 4 people co-sponsor a Pilgrim. Start raising the fee in your Reunion Group. A group can sponsor a Pilgrim.

Don’t let money be a burden to keep a Pilgrim from going on a Walk.

So let’s get applications in!

Flood the office with applications! 

You know there are folks in our communities who are hungry and looking for something more. 

Let’s all do our small part and let God do the rest.

DeColores!

Mike Martin

ALL SPONSORS!!

In light of the walks currently suspended, be assured that your Pilgrim's application is still active in our database.

All fees received with applications have been applied toward your Pilgrim's fees. 

A gentle reminder from the Pilgrim application that all deposits are non-refundable.

Anne Wojcik, Registrar

Calling all Pastors!

Darrell Joiner, our Community Spiritual Director needs to know if you have attended a walk. If so, he needs your information.

Also, if you haven't filled out a Clergy Willing Servant Form in awhile, please do so again to update your information.

Click on the BUTTON below to access the form. Fill it out and send it to  Darrell. Click HERE for Darrell's email address.                              .
Upcoming Events
Community Gatherings 

March 10 at 7:00-- Kingsland 1st UMC

April 7 at 7:00-- College Place UMC in Brunswick

If you would like to offer your church to host a Gathering in the future, or would be interested in sharing a Fourth Day testimony, please contact David DuBois at  david.dubois@westrock.com   for more information regarding what is required of a host church.

Reflections from the Heart
Finding Pilgrims
Barbara Kevan
San Diego #26

By the time this newsletter comes out, the fate of the Spring walks will have been decided.  So many hours have gone into these Walks, that it seems criminal that they may not happen. As people who have benefited from our own Walks, we have a responsibility to be sure there are enough pilgrims for each Walk. 

Part of the Great Commission says that we are supposed to let the world know about and be drawn to Jesus. Going on an Emmaus retreat is a major step in many pilgrims' lives.  We have a responsibility to let as many people as we can know about the weekend, and you are also encouraged to ask others if they are interested. Sometimes all it takes is one person asking another person to go.  It’s your chance to be an evangelist; your chance to make an awesome difference in someone’s life.

Remember the official Emmaus Guidelines for being a Sponsor. They are as follows:

Sponsorship is NOT trying "to get all my friends to go" or to "fix people's problems” or to "reproduce" one's own religious experience in others.

Rather, IT IS the aim of the Sponsor to bring spiritual revitalization to Christians who, in turn, will bring new life and vision to the work of the church in the congregation, home, workplace, and community. The AIM of sponsorship is to build up the Body of Christ.”

Our goal as Emmaus veterans should be to make sure that each Walk has more than enough Pilgrims two months before they occur. We should have a waiting list. God would honor that from all of us.

I had started this article before the decision to cancel the Walks. This really is the correct way to run them; waiting until the last week or two is not fair to anyone. However, we should all remember that we are each to blame.

I don’t often sponsor people, but I was going to this time. I asked someone who had mentioned she was interested before, but we hadn’t talked about it in a long time. She wouldn’t have come to me, but as soon as I asked her, she said yes. We are both disappointed that she will have to wait.

Please, everyone, be working on the next lists of pilgrims now. It is not too early.

DeColores!

Rebuilding the Community

Amy Hitt
      GIWTE # 19


When the Board decided to postpone the Spring Walks, it was not an easy decision; however, it was  necessary, in my opinion. This issue has been on my mind for a couple years.

The Upper Room sets rules and standards for us to follow as a community, and they say that we must have a minimum of 20 pilgrims per Walk.

For the last couple of years, we have struggled to meet these requirements and have even held a Walk without the minimum number of pilgrims.  The world didn't end because of that, but our community is suffering. 

Our community is stagnant.

We are not growing.

Not because we don't send people on this great experience, but it's because we are JUST sending people.

We have not been in constant prayer about who to sponsor, and we are not listening to God.

The Walks are important but only if they are happening the way they were designed and for the purpose they were designed. We need to have people waiting to get in... it's that good!

We have been struggling to get pilgrims and to build teams for the last few years. We aren’t putting the time and prayer into building teams or choosing pilgrims. People are going for the wrong reasons, and that's why we aren't growing as a community.

My walk was not an ‘ah ha’ moment for me. I didn't really bond with anyone while I was there. I haven't seen anyone from my table in years, but God used the time to stir something in me and to grow me in HIM. My ‘ah ha’ came the first time I served.

I love this Emmaus community, but I believe God wants us to reevaluate what we are really trying to accomplish here. Just sending people to Emmaus is not His goal; changing the lives of His children to grow His church is.

We shouldn't be begging people to go. They should be begging us!  

We are in the midst of some growing pains. Right now the Board isn't scheduling the next set of Walks because we don't have the pilgrims. We need to have a healthy list of names for the men and the women - enough for 2 full sets (in my opinion) before we plan.

When I submitted my application, I was not told by my Sponsor that the Walk would be on a specific date, because we didn't know for certain when someone would be invited to attend.

Please remember that when you sponsor someone.

Also remember that Sponsorship is a big responsibility that doesn't end after the walk has happened. It's a commitment to help someone continue to grow in Christ.

I want us to take this time as a community to refocus on the intent of the Walk to Emmaus. We need to think about why we do it and make sure that our hearts are in the right place.

Be in prayer about whom in your life God is calling you to sponsor and consider if God is nudging you to serve for the first time or to serve again. 

Remember, there are lots of ways to serve. If you have served in the Conference room, that doesn’t mean you can’t serve in the Background again.

We need both servants and pilgrims!

Be in prayer about what God wants YOU to do to help in the rebuilding of this Community.

DeColores!

Growth in Our 4th Days

Trisa Chancey
GIWTE #2
Table of Mary
Have you seen the “Wordless Book”? I was reminded of it recently while reading “She’s Got Issues,” by Nicole Unice.

It is a matchbox size book made up of pieces of felt stapled together: Black represents sin; Red is for Jesus' blood, payment for our sin; White is for the clean heart of the forgiven sinner; Yellow for the streets of gold in Heaven. But it was the Green square that Nicole Unice focused on. Green is for spiritual growth.

There was a popular TV show when I was growing up called “Growing Pains.” To this day, the title makes me think of my little brother. His growing pains were so bad, he actually needed crutches to help him walk for a while.

I know our three-day Walk to Emmaus was different for each of us, for we approached it at different times in our lives and from our own unique perspectives. But regardless of our perspective or approach, we must continue to grow in our faith for Emmaus to have its intended impact. As long as we remain on this side of Heaven’s gates, we are to be in the process of growing more like Christ.

During our Walk to Emmaus, we were given many tools to use to facilitate our spiritual growth. People took time to speak God’s truth into our lives and gave us the opportunity to respond to the truth we took hold of.

Ultimately, we were given our reunion cards. Weekly meetings with others who have been on the Walk are encouraged to keep us accountable as we continue to grow more like Christ. I know my own reunion group has been instrumental in providing strength to me when I had none of my own. And as I have gained strength, I have been able to return the favor.

We are all in God’s hands. He holds us and guides us, but never forces His way on us. He teaches us and reminds us of His teaching. Some lessons forgotten are repeated. I think of Paul, in 1 Corinthians 3, longing to share solid spiritual food with his followers, but they were still babes in Christ and not yet able to bear it. He was frustrated and hurt that they were still concerned with worldly things and had not yet grown enough to begin to understand God’s truth that Paul so desperately wanted to share.

As the season of Lent begins, let us take comfort in knowing we are in God’s hands. Let us look for the lessons He is trying to teach us and learn them well. Let us look forward with hope to Easter and the celebration of our risen Lord!

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

I am beginning a new section of the newsletter this month. I'm asking each of you to consider writing a short piece (about 300 words) about how you have experienced life in God's Hands.

I'll print stories from Community members each month. Deanna Smith has graciously volunteered to answer God's call and has shared the first story below.

It's my hope that this discourse will allow us to get to know each other better and to rejoice in the many ways God has blessed us and kept us safe as we have trusted Him on our 4th day adventures.

To submit your story to me, please email me by clicking HERE .

Thank you!

Lori Durham
Communications Board Rep
In God's Hands

Deana Smith
GIWTE #19

My family, all our lives, were born and raised on Bermuda, a small island in the Atlantic.

In  May 2015, I turned to the Lord and read deep in my bible. I asked Him to be our guide. I asked if it were in His will for us to move to America. If so, then I prayed for His guidance and direction in and on our lives as He went before us to prepare the way. Praise our Wonderful God!

For months, as I read my bible, I would always fall back on Jeremiah 29:11. The verse seemed to speak directly to me: "For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future." As I continued to read, I felt like a large burden was being lifted from me. I found it comforting during this time to turn to my Heavenly Father in his word.

My husband, Richard, was raised Methodist. I was raised Evangelical and came from a very close-knit family. So to leave the only home I had known since birth was hard. But praise God, if I had to do it all over again, I would. 

My husband had family in Camden County, so it was natural to arrive here to build our new lives. We already loved the people and church family at Woodbine UMC, so we followed God and left Bermuda to begin a new life for our family.

After having been protected and feeling safe on our tiny island, we now lived in a much larger and unfamiliar country. I felt the fear of the unknown here. I am still frightened when I hear gun shots or see snakes in and around the blueberry bushes. But that is life.

Isaiah 43:1-5 says, "Do not fear, for I am with you." I praise my wonderful God each day that my family is here. I pray he will continue to guide, guard, and direct our daughter, Hannah, who is studying Nuclear Engineering in Oregon, and our son, Jonathan, a student at Camden County High School.

Now we have been in the U.S. going on three years. I feel blessed to have a great church family and new friends. I also write uplifting and encouraging notes to those in need of care and love. I love letting people know they are cared for and that my prayers and thoughts are with them. 

God has always had my life in his care. We are doing well as a family. Praise God for all his intervention!  I have no doubt my future is secure in God's mighty hands.

DeColores!
Golden Isles Walk to Emmaus Board Meeting

GIE Board Meeting March 18, 9 AM   Brunswick FUMC, Miller Building.

E mmaus community members are always welcome at Golden Isles Emmaus Board Meetings, which are normally held the third Saturday of each month at the Miller Building behind Brunswick First United Methodist Church. 
 G olden Isles Walk to Emmaus mail@goldenislesemmaus.org  www.goldenislesemmaus.org