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
Breanna Mekuly
Valerie Luckey

Emmaus Soup Kitchen
218 East 11th Street
Erie PA 16503

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

Our Response to COVID-19

Dear Friends,
For over 40 years the Emmaus family, of which you are a treasured member, has tried to ensure that the hungry and homeless of Erie are fed and given a sense of communal support. During this tragic COVID-19 pandemic, Emmaus will continue to live its mission. We are, of course, taking precautions to protect our guests, volunteers, and staff and I wanted you to know about them.

The Emmaus Soup Kitchen continues to serve a meal Monday through Friday from 4-5:30pm. Meals, however, are packaged to-go and handed out at the door for our guests.

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

The cover of this issue of The Companion with the image of a Saint Benedict house blessing door hanger protecting the soup kitchen reminds us that we are bearers of a beautiful tradition. As you know, Emmaus Ministries, though separately incorporated...

For the Record

Easter Arrives at Emmaus Soup Kitchen

Rebecca Styn

Even though the coronavirus pandemic closed the door of her restaurant, Rebecca Styn wanted to make sure that Emmaus Soup Kitchen guests still had a familiar taste of Easter. Styn, owner of Room 33, a speakeasy and café in downtown Erie, prepared close to 200 Easter bags for guests, each of which she individually wrapped and wiped down. The colorful bags were filled with chocolates and Peep marshmallows, yes, but also unique and thoughtful items—a plastic egg, that when opened contained an inspirational message, a lip lotion…

“I love to do things for great Erie organizations—and Emmaus is one of the best.  My restaurant is closed...

Volunteers…a faithful and abiding presence

Debbie Shoup
Jim Vogt

Emmaus has never wanted for volunteers. Over 300 volunteers assist at the pantry, Kids Cafe, and soup kitchen on a regular schedule to make sure the hungry of Erie are fed. But what about volunteering during a pandemic when exposure to the homeless brings great risk?

“I called the volunteers and told them that if they had the slightest hesitation about jeopardizing themselves or their loved ones, they should stay home,” said Sister Mary Miller, director of Emmaus. “Many of our volunteers are elderly and in the high-risk group if they get the coronavirus. A lot of parents were self-quarantined because college children had...

A Long-Time Soup Kitchen Volunteer Becomes an Author!

Long-time Emmaus Soup Kitchen volunteer, Jayne Simon, not only gives her time and generous heart to the hungry and homeless of Erie, she is now a published author as well. In an Erie Times-News article on Sunday, March 29, Simon’s journey as a member in the local 50-Plus Seniors Writers Group brings focus to her historical fiction book, Being Strong, which was published earlier this year. The novel centers on Rose, a character based on Simon’s mother, and tells the story of her early life in New York.

Jayne Simon, whose husband is the rector of Church of the Nativity, a Russian Orthodox parish, has been dedicated to Emmaus...

Walking Together on the Road to Emmaus

Volunteers and Donors

Emmaus depends on many volunteers and donors at the food pantry, soup kitchen and Kids Cafe.Call 814-459-8349 if you would like to volunteer. Click here to make a donation.

Joan Martter

Joan Martter with soup kitchen guest, Tom

Emmaus staff member Breanna Mekuly interviewed Joan Martter about her time volunteering at Emmaus. This is what she had to say.

Breanna: How long have you been serving at Emmaus?
Joan: I first started serving at the soup kitchen in 2000. Initially, I came to the soup kitchen to deliver the proceeds of our Angel Tree for Sister Rosanne’s children’s Christmas celebrations.* I was working with Fairview High School and the Angel Tree was a part of our Key Club. Soon after, I started bringing desserts once a month to the soup kitchen.

Soup's On: An Emmaus Journal

By Breanna Mekuly, an employee with Emmaus Ministries

Months of January and February

Tim is one of the friendliest guests of the soup kitchen I’ve ever met. He always smiles and enjoys joking around. The other day as I walked past he called me over and, chuckling to himself, said: “Breanna, are you a nun yet?” I laughed and told him that’s not where my life is headed. “Well, if you keep working here,” he said, “I bet they’ll get you soon!”


Someday are better than others. Today was hectic at the soup kitchen. The cops came looking for one of our guy guests. A woman had a bad reaction to a drug she had taken and paramedics had to be called. Then another woman came in with a nasty attitude. But our volunteers and guests, of course, took it all in stride and treated one another with goodwill.


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.

+ Rosemary (McCabe) Kaveney (vol)

+ Marie E. (Lubelski) Kuzmin

+ Cynthia Hauser Manna

+ "Connie" Bruno Ratajczak (vol)

+ Joseph Nies

+ Robert Walker

+ Mary Edna Pinczok Burbules

+ John C. Schwab

+ Charles William "Bill" Rosenquest

+ Bonnie Lee (Jorgensen) Tullio

+ Thomas J. Zipperi Sr

Fulfill the Emmaus Wish List

You can always help us stock our shelves at the soup kitchen with ground coffee, instant tea and instant lemonade, jelly/jam, peanut butter, maple syrup, mayonnaise/miracle whip, soup, and canned fruit. We ALWAYS appreciate diapers (all sizes) and baby formula.

The Kids Cafe Store is in need of the following items:
School supplies
hand sanitizer,
hair supplies (shampoo and conditioner, hair ties, brushes, picks, head bands, etc.)

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