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On Saturday, September 19, from 8:00 to 10:00 a.m. Central Time, Emmaus Ministries will host an online international gathering via Zoom. We hope you will not only attend but also invite everyone in your Emmaus community to be present. This will be unlike any gathering Emmaus Ministries has ever held, bringing together music and speakers who are active in Emmaus communities around the world, and offering the opportunity for participants to share a mini-group reunion experience with Emmaus people from diverse cultures. Register today, save the date, and help spread the word!

Event Highlights

Singing from International Communities

Hear from Fourth Day Witnesses

Small-Group Times

Special Announcements Within the Emmaus Community

Participate in Love Feast*

*In order to celebrate with us, please have a piece of bread and a glass or cup of water next to you.

Event Speakers

Rubén Rivera Martínez

Rubén Rivera Martínez was born on May 24, 1979 in Puerto Rico. From a young age he has attended the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico. As a layperson in the church he held various positions, both in his local church and at the conference level. He was part of the committee for the celebration of the centennial of the Methodist Church in Puerto Rico. Since July 1, 2004 he has belonged to the pastoral body of the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico.

In 2010 he was received as an elder of the Methodist Church of Puerto Rico. Reverend Rubén Rivera made his Emmaus Walk in 2005. He has been part of the Disciples table in several Walks, in addition to working in several Crisálidas in Puerto Rico. From 2016–2018 he was the spiritual director of the Crisálida Community of Puerto Rico. In 2018 he was part of the group that worked on the First Emmaus Walk in Bolivia, and he returned the following two years. Upon his return from the first Walk in Bolivia, Reverend Rubén moved with his family to Long Island, New York; for two years he has been a member of the New York Annual Conference and serves as pastor of Flanders United Methodist Church. In 2019 he was the spiritual director of the first Walk to Emmaus in Argentina. Reverend Rubén Rivera Martínez has always answered the call of the Lord Jesus Christ with “Here I am, send me.”  ¡De Colores!

Donna Highley

Donna Highley made her first Walk with North Indiana Emmaus Community (Walk #100) in January 1998. Donna and her husband, Max (Walk #99), live in Wabash, Indiana. She recently retired from her position as a physical therapist with the public school system.

The Highleys have a daughter, Jill, and son, Eric; both Jill and Eric and their spouses participated in Chrysalis weekends, so this family has been quite involved in Emmaus Ministries over the years. Donna and Max have seven grandchildren.

Members of Wabash First United Methodist Church, Donna and Max Highley serve as lay delegates to their annual conference. Donna heads the Disciple Pathway group to empower discipleship through their church. She is a board member for the New Beginnings Ministry, a recovery ministry for men with addiction, and volunteers as a physical therapist with Hope 85, a free medical clinic in her community. Donna has served as lay director for a Women’s Walk and a girls’ Chrysalis Flight, as well as lay director for the North Indiana Chrysalis Community and member of the Emmaus Board of Directors. Currently she is a consultant with Emmaus Ministries. Now retired, the Highleys enjoy camping, boating, and jet skiing—and spending time with their family, watching their grandchildren in sports and music.

Deb and Ray Murphy

Deb and Ray Murphy have been part of Emmaus Ministries since 2001, when they both attended Walks in the Heart of Carolina Emmaus Community (Raleigh area, North Carolina). After going through the progression of servanthood in the HOC Community, they became part of the Southeast Region Chrysalis and Emmaus team and served as assistant regional leaders for several years. When the opportunity to lead the Southeast Region team opened, Deb was offered the position and served until 2018, when The Upper Room introduced the new support model. Deb now serves as the communicator for District 6 (Illinois and Indiana), and Ray serves as communicator for Districts 3 and 9 (Arkansas, Kansas, Maryland, Missouri, Oklahoma, Texas, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia).

Deb is currently participating in the Two-Year Academy for Spiritual Formation at Camp Sumatanga in Gallant, Alabama. She serves as music director for the NC Five-Day Academy for Spiritual Formation at The Trinity Center, Pine Knoll Shores, NC.

Ray grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, and served as an officer in the US Army. Deb recently retired after 25 years of service with John Deere, and they moved to Apex, NC, to be closer to friends and Deb’s family. They are part of a United Methodist cooperative parish that includes Apex UMC, The Peak, 519 Church, and Fiesta Cristiana.

Prayer undergirds the ministry and mission of all Emmaus Ministries. We invite you to sign up for the 100-day prayer vigil that begins on September 19. There are 5 slots each day; we invite people around the world to pray for wisdom and discernment for Emmaus Ministries during this interim period of COVID-19 and post-COVID worlds and for the Emmaus Ministries: Making a World of Difference campaign. Please click here to sign up.

The Virtual Gathering will also launch the Emmaus Ministries: Making a World of Difference funding campaign to support the program, which receives its operational income from community fees and donations. This campaign will highlight the impact that Emmaus Ministries has been making in lives and churches around the globe for more than 40 years and will seek to raise $100,000 in 100 days for the day-to-day operations of this ministry.

Read the Emmaus Ministries case of support below.




While several strategies for reopening the world are being discussed, I encourage you—the people of God everywhere—to allow this season to be a formative one during which you can make new discoveries about God and increase your faith. Use this time to embark on a life of prayer, a life of study, and a life of action—involvement in the community.”

 On September 19th, attend Emmaus Ministries International Virtual Gathering.