Emmaus Ministries

Emmaus Ministries

A commitment to the forgotten and the faceless of society – a Christian presence and outreach in Erie, Pennsylvania since 1974.


EMMAUS MINISTRIES: A Commitment to the Forgotten and the Marginal
— to the faceless of society who get left out and left behind without support at times of crisis

— to the single mother whose life is a constant struggle to provide simple necessities for her children

— to the child lost in poverty whose present is barely human and whose future is already lost

— to the elderly whose basic needs are too great for a check that is too small

— to the working poor who work in the lowest of low paying jobs and never get ahead

Contact Information

Emmaus Ministries, Inc.
345 East 9th Street
Erie, PA 16503
Phone: 814-459-8349
Fax: 814-459-8066
Sister Mary Miller, OSB
Margaret Kloecker
Rita Scrimenti

Emmaus Soup Kitchen
218 East 11th Street
Erie PA 16503

Sister Gus' Kids Cafe
310 East 10th Street
Erie PA 16503

Breaking the Bread

There are people  
in the world so hungry,
that God cannot
appear to them
except in
the form
of bread.
Mahatma Gandhi 

From the Director

Sister Mary Miller

Sister Mary Miller, Emmaus Ministries Director

Dear Friends of Emmaus,

Pope Francis has declared 2016 a Jubilee Year of Mercy. We are accepting his invitation.

Three things I know for sure about mercy. It’s hard for me to define mercy but I know it when I see it. There was a very poor family, a father, mother and son, who came...

For the Record

Plea for mercy

Sister Mary Miller, director of Emmaus Ministries, testified at the sentencing of the man who set fire to the soup kitchen last fall asking the judge to show mercy towards the accused. The four Erie Benedictine Sisters from the Emmaus staff were all present in court. To read more, click here.

Filled with Surprises

At first the children had reservations about Yoga, but after a few attempts they were eager for more.

If you go to the after school program at the Emmaus Kids Cafe you can be sure you’re getting a hot and nutritious home cooked meal, but after that…you might be surprised. Recently children at the Kids Cafe were volunteers for a project conducted by Gannon University students on Yoga and Memory; participated in Poem in Your Pocket Day by pretending to be eaten by a boa constrictor among other things; and walked outside to pet a live Jersey cow and a pygmy goat.

At right, the children had reservations about Yoga, but after a few attempts they were eager for more.

Urban Garden Featured

Ellen DiPlacido, co-director of Emmaus Grove: An Urban Farm

Ellen DiPlacido, co-director of Emmaus Grove: An Urban Farm, is part of a public service series on combatting obesity produced by Erie’s PBS station, WQLN. To view Ellen’s remarks on Emmaus’ efforts to grow and teach others about organic produce, click here.

Walking Together on the Road to Emmaus

Volunteer at Emmaus

Over 300 people volunteer at Emmaus food pantry, soup kitchen and Kids Cafe.Call 814-459-8349 if you would like to volunteer.

Patty Shea makes move from teacher to cook

Patty Shea enjoys breakfast at Avantis Restaurant in Erie. She and her siblings meet there once a week, just doors away from where her in-laws, Harry and Joan Shea, operated Frontier Bakery.

by Liz Allen
Patty Shea married into a well-known family of bakers, but her forte has been in the classroom, not the kitchen.

Nevertheless, since retiring from teaching in 2011, Patty has found her niche as a volunteer cook at Sister Gus’ Kids Cafe.

The after-school program, located on the ground floor of The Studio at St. Mary’s, at 310 E. 10th St. in Erie, is a few blocks from Pfeiffer-Burleigh Elementary, where Patty taught fifth-grade special education for 31 of her 37 years in the Erie School District....

Donate to Emmaus

There is no such thing as a donation that is “too little.” Over 90% of our donations are under $100.

Betty Grafius and Kathy Derda serve up kindness by the dozens

Betty Grafius and Kathy Derda, Emmaus home-baked cookie donors

by Liz Allen
In their golden years, sisters Betty Grafius (left) and Kathy Derda have become shining examples of how to contribute to Emmaus Ministries by tapping into special talents that include long-term commitment, organizational skills and unflagging enthusiasm.

Since December 2006, the two women have led an effort to donate homemade cookies to Emmaus Soup Kitchen every month.

“I have the best bakers in town, and we have never missed in 10 years,” says...

Remember Emmaus with a Memorial

We are grateful to family members who ask that memorials be made to Emmaus on the death of loved ones. Visit our secure site to offer a memorial.

+ Edward J. Malinowski

+ Shirley Bastow Kenehan

+ Anthony James Denny (vol)

+ Janice K. Sedler

+ Donald "Herbie" Beer

+ Almarie Lillian (Baldini) Arneman

+ August "A.J." Scolio, Jr.

+ Chester D. Urbaniak

+ Kenneth W. Gordon

+ Helen Joan Wilkosz Sargent Manning

+ Harvey "Butch" W. Miller

Fulfill the Emmaus Wish List

We are in URGENT NEED of food items such as powdered milk, canned chili, beef stew or pasta, soup and canned fruit for our emergency bags. We ALWAYS need diapers (all sizes) and baby formula.

The Kids Cafe Store is in need of the following items:
Nail Polish
Travel size Kleenex
Pump bottles of hand soap
Dollar Store toys for Bingo prizes

Attention Bakers!!! We welcome homemade treats for our guests. If you're a baker, know that our Emmaus guests appreciate cookies, cakes, pies…sweets of any kind.

Call 814-459-8349 for more information or to schedule your donation.

Pray with Emmaus

Please join with the Emmaus community in reciting this prayer daily.

Prayer of St. Vincent DePaul

You will find that charity
is a heavy burden to carry,
heavier than the kettle of soup
and the basket of bread.

But you must your gentleness
and your smile keep.

Giving soup and bread
isn’t all that you can do.

The poor are your masters-
terribly sensitive and exacting
as you will see.

But the more demanding they seem
the more unjust and bitter
the more you must give them your love.

Emmaus Ministries