It was on Easter Day that two disciples, disappointed and confused by the traumatic events of the previous few days, were walking together towards Emmaus, a small village near Jerusalem. On their way a stranger fell in step with them; a wise and knowledgeable stranger, who, through scripture, was able to help and comfort them as they mourned the loss of their Master, and as they tried to come to terms with the disappointment of their unrealised hopes. When they arrived at Emmaus the day was almost over, and so they invited this comforting, new-found friend to stay with them, and to share their evening meal.
It was when Jesus took the bread and broke it, that “the scales fell from their eyes”, and they recognised who he was. (See Luke 24)
Emmaus House of Prayer has been named with this resurrection story in mind: It is hoped that all who visit it may indeed feel their hearts burn within them, and that they may recognise our risen Lord through fellowship and simple hospitality, in contemplation of the Word, and in the “breaking of the bread”.
Emmaus House has as its priority the worship, praise and petition of God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Secondly, it is a place where pilgrims may come as they make their journey, seeking God through meditation and contemplation, through the sacraments of Penance and the Eucharist, and where they may offer prayer for others, for the world, and for themselves.
Emmaus House is run along the lines of a “mini monastery”, so throughout the day (morning, midday, evening and at the end of the day), formal prayer services take place in the house chapel, where the Eucharist is also celebrated.
There is also opportunity for personal, informal prayer and silence (an essential element), allowing visitors space for reflection and meditation.
Included in the daily round are the Benedictine aspects of reading and study, as well as manual work.
It is for anyone who thinks that they might benefit in any way at all from a visit. While Fr Philip is the only permanent resident, there is a guest bedroom for visitors who may wish to stay overnight or for a few days. Some may want to come for a time of retreat or simply a quiet and undemanding opportunity to meditate upon a problem or a decision needing to be made. Some may just want time for peace and quiet – a breathing space. The House is here for all these reasons. If you would like to arrange a visit, however long or short, or would like further information about the Prayer House, please contact Fr Philip. You will be most welcome, so do come!
If there is anyone you would like to be prayed for in the House of Prayer, please send an email giving as few or as many details as you wish. Please put "Prayer Request" as the subject.