Dear Community,

I was unfortunately away during the May Gathering, Send Off, Candlelight Service, and Closing for WV#150. My wife and I took a trip to England, Wales, Ireland, and Scotland for a couple of weeks. Terrible, I know, but someone has to do it! 😊

Welcome to the new Community members from WV#150! I was told by many it was a powerful and joyful weekend. Thank you very much to the Team, Pilgrims, Sponsors, and the families that made this weekend focus on the glory of God! And to the Community that showed up, participated, and supported the weekend. Debbie Weiss was announced and anointed as the Weekend Lay Director for WV#152 during the Closing ceremony! Get those teaming applications in by going to our site’s Resources page.

Speaking on such, at the June Gathering, we announced that we have moved to online Teaming Applications as the primary tool to share your desire to team. It is very simple. We’ve opened applications for WV#152 for this Fall, though WV#156 Fall of 2024. Just indicate your desire to be considered as a candidate for which Weekend(s), or if you’d like to update your contact information. If you are uncomfortable with providing personal contact information through the online form, you can simply send an email to our Registrars, Cindy Rauch and Karen Sassaman at registration@westvirginiaemmaus.org and they will begin the process. Pilgrim and Sponsor applications will be handled the traditional way as they require time to be spent explaining the intent of the Walk and signatures.

At the June Gathering we also highlighted the financial situation of the Community. The Board of Directors has initiated a campaign for awareness, development of an online offering capability, and the desires for personal, business, and local church donations. Receipts can be provided for non-profit donations. The campaign committee is led by Bruce Taggart and includes four other Board members. We are seeking two additional Community members, especially those with business experience. If you are interested in helping with outlining communications and approaches to engage the Community, please email the Board of Directors at board@westvirginiaemmaus.org.

The Community operating costs are about $40,000 per year. $30,000 is for the four Weekend Events for hosting and meal costs (paid by Team fees and sponsoring). The remaining $10,000 in costs come from Gatherings, annual picnic, weekend event support, insurance, services, materials, Upper Room fees… We operated for several years with a healthy account that was generated a while back. Those funds have been depleted. We have not held a strategic ‘business meeting’ in some time, so it was a little difficult to see the long-term financial health of the Community.

Teaming fees and sponsoring are $205 and have not increased since 2017 even as costs have increased. The Board DOES NOT desire to increase Team fees and sponsoring. The Board is focused on a vision of Team fees and sponsoring to be around $150. It launched the campaign mentioned above and hopes to have the details worked out by August. Those in attendance at the Gathering responded positively to the information. They appreciated being made aware of the situation.

A simple example solution was shown:

If 100 people would be able to offer $100/yr = $10,000

If 200 people were to offer $100/yr = $20,000 (Or a combination of personal, business, and home church donations near this point) the excess could be used to significantly offset Team fees and sponsoring.

The Board realizes this is not feasible for all, but the potential to demonstrate the love and value of the Emmaus movement is easily imagined.

Please continue to pray for our Community and the Emmaus movement, for us to give God the glory, and for us be the hands and feet of Jesus.

De Colores and Blessings,

Carl Kaempfer

Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia Emmaus Community Lay Director