Prayer walk

A meditative walk around six stations, which each have a focus, an action and a prayer.

about the prayer walk

Reflecting upon our mortality can enable us to flourish. This prayer walk is on six themes related to death and dying which can help us to live well in that light. The prayer walk comprises six stations (stops) designed as a walk to and from Emmaus (Luke 24 v 13-35). The story represents human life, death and resurrection in a single narrative and can help us discover what’s really important in life.

setting up a prayer walk

  • Set up the walk inside or outside, in a church, school, or other community space.
  • Set up the stations as a journey that moves spiritually inwards to Station 3 and begins to turn spiritually outwards at Station 4. (Recall that the two on the road to Emmaus turned round and went back). You might want to do this as a horseshoe but the precise way you do this will depend on the space you have available.
  • Mark the route with footprints if you wish. (Download footprints template.)
  • Use the walk either with the sermon starters, Bible studies or meditations on the same six living well themes or just on its own.
  • It may be particularly fitting to do this at Eastertide or at Remembrance tide.
  • You will need to provide instructions for each participant (download instructions) and the Bible passage. (Download a translation of your choice from the Resources panel.)
  • At each station you will need the materials and paper with the theme, the focus, the action and the prayer on (Download this from the Resources panel. You might want to laminate it).
  • You might also want to provide copies of the prayer that participants can take away. (Download the prayers from the Resources panel and cut into eight.)
  • For a list of all the materials you need to provide, see the Resources panel.

loving

Focus: Jesus himself came near to them…they stood still looking sad.

Action: Pick up a holding cross and move your hand over the rosemary. Smell the living rosemary, recall your loss and gaze upon Jesus. Take time, ask Jesus to come near, to listen, to understand and guide you.

Pray: Lord, grief is the price we pay for love. Help me to trust that in my sadness you draw near. Amen.

A holding cross and a sprig of rosemary

Station one

Holding cross, Rosemary sprig or plant

Basket, with some pebbles beside and a Sharpie pen

Station two

Sharpie pens, pebbles, basket

letting go

Focus: But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel… Stay with us, because it is almost evening and the day is now nearly over.

Action: Think about a loss, a disappointment or an unfulfilled dream. Use a pen and write your loss on a stone. Place it in the basket.

Pray: Lord, be with me as I mourn my ‘might have beens’. Help me to leave them in your hands. Amen.

seeing

Focus: When he was at the table with them, he took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. Then their eyes were opened.

Action: Tear off a piece of bread. Break it and look carefully at as you pray and then eat it.

Pray: Lord, you are the one who feeds me. Open my eyes and help me to see more than meets the eye. Amen.

Three slices of a French stick of bread

Station three

Gluten-free bread

Mirror, candle and lighter

Station four

Mirror, candle and lighter

growing

Focus: ‘Were not our hearts burning within us while he was talking to us on the road?’ That same hour they got up…Then they told what had happened.

Action: Light a candle and look in the mirror. See yourself as God sees you at this moment, full of potential.

Pray: Lord, thank you that I am precious and loved by you. Help me to grow through the dark times as I journey on. Strengthen me to own and tell my story, safe in the knowledge you have called me by name – I am yours. Amen.

belonging

Focus: They returned to Jerusalem; and they found the eleven and their companions gathered together.

Action: Write your name along with any you want to remember and add them to the prayer tree. We become ourselves in the company of others.

Pray: Lord, thank you for all who have loved me and those I have loved. Bring us all to that place where there is no more sorrow or sighing, where the joys and pains of humanity are held in your eternal arms of love and peace. Amen.

Two paper doves on a tree made of sticks

Station five

Paper doves, string, prayer tree

A pink rose and some lavender

Station six

A fragrant flower and some lavender

Hoping

Focus: Jesus stood among them and said to them ‘Peace be with you.’

Action: Smell the flower and, as you do so, enjoy the peace and memories of your loved ones. Run your fingers through the lavender plant. Let it calm you. Offer your cares to God and ask him to give you his peace.

Pray: Lord, help me to trust that death is not the end. Keep me fixed on the hope that we will one day meet face to face and give me the peace that passes all understanding.

Resources

You will need instructions for the participants. You might also want to print out the story from Luke 24 and have footprints between the stations.

Click on the buttons to download the PDFs.

You will also need six tables – one for each station. These are the materials you will need for each. 

Click on the buttons to download the PDFs.

Station 1

Holding cross

Rosemary sprig or plant

Station 2

Sharpie pens

Pebbles

Basket

Station 3

Gluten free bread

Station 4

Candle and lighter

Mirror tile

Station 5

String (cut into 4” or 10cm) lengths)

Prayer tree

Paper doves

Station 6

A fragrant flower

Lavender