By Katherine Long, Editor

More than 175 walkers and runners stepped off from Columbus Circle in downtown Syracuse July 23, participating in the Run Your Faith “To The Streets” Walk & Run to support St. James Emmaus Ministry.

The morning’s event was important because “we’re going to make a presence of Christ to the people of the South Side and the shelter system, the homeless, the people that we typically look away from,” said Emmaus Director Sheila Austin, RN, prior to the start of the walk. “We’re bringing the community together to experience them and to bring Christ to them and bring items that they need.”

Emmaus Ministry “brings the presence of the Catholic Church to the poor, hungry, isolated, and homeless of the south side and the city of Syracuse,” offering food, clothing, services, and love to those in need. There was no fee to enter the 7.5-mile run or 2-mile walk; rather, participants were asked to bring clothing and personal care items. More than 4,000 items were donated, which will be distributed to the poor and homeless in Syracuse via Emmaus Ministry and the Hope Mobile and to various agencies that support the homeless, Austin told the Sun in an email following the event.

Emmaus Ministry began a new chapter August 1: “Thanks to the many supporters, benefactors, associates, volunteers and the goodness of the St. James Church community (where Emmaus Ministry has been housed), Emmaus Ministry has seen substantial growth over the past eight years. As a result of this growth and the prospect of continued growth in the future, Emmaus Ministry is proud to announce that as of August 1, 2016 it will be separately incorporated as a 501(c)(3) organization called, Road to Emmaus Ministry of Syracuse, Inc.,” the organization wrote on its Facebook page July 29.

“Emmaus Ministry has over fifteen different ministries under its umbrella, and now the prospect of having a broader impact on the South side of Syracuse make it necessary to move to separate incorporation. Finding a new home with more space, where the reach of Emmaus can have a more transformative impact on the people and neighborhood it serves, is on the horizon,” the post said.

Learn more about Emmaus Ministry at, and see more photos from the event below.

All photos for the Sun by Katherine Long.
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