Forming an Ecumenical Catholic Community
SEARCHING FOR AN ECUMENICAL COMMUNITY - 2006
What was later to become the Emmaus Ecumenical Catholic Community in Oshkosh, a member of the Ecumenical Catholic Communion, began as a small prayer group of 6 to 8 reflecting on scripture and sharing personal faith together. In the process they uncovered a mutual uneasiness with many of the things taking place in the Roman Catholic Church at the time and a desire for something different. They began searching for alternative experiences of Catholic community; hoping to find something that would meet their needs and better express their faith.
Their search led them to explore several progressive alternative Catholic communities. In the early fall of 2007 Tom and Carla Altepeter, and Kathy and Stan Kline, traveled to Chicago to meet with Fr. Frank Krebs and Mother Jessica. The Chicago meetings gave the group a much better feel for the Ecumenical Catholic Communion’s character and direction. They found it to be hopeful and exciting. Many phone conversations followed, allowing the Oshkosh group to learn more about this new church.
A NEW COMMUNITY IS FORMED - 2009
By early summer of 2008, the Oshkosh team was getting excited about forming a new church in Oshkosh. They began holding weekly meetings for prayer and fellowship at noon on Tuesdays. By spring 2009, the group averaged 12-15 people at the weekly meetings.
The new community’s first public prayer service was a healing service held at First Congregational Church, FCC, in Oshkosh in March of 2009. In April, 2009, Fr. Frank Krebs paid the new community a visit and celebrated the Eucharist with the group. This was the first Ecumenical Catholic liturgy celebrated in Wisconsin.
The Emmaus Ecumenical Catholic Community began holding liturgies on Sunday evenings at First Congregational Church. The First Congregational Church community has been exceedingly supportive of our new church and very generous in sharing their many resources with us
In the June of 2011, Fr. Mike Bober was ordained the second ECC Priest to serve the Oshkosh, Emmaus Community. Mike spent ten years as a Marianist brother preparing for the priesthood. When he decided to leave religious life, he thought his dream of becoming a priest was over. Now, many years later, his dream came true in the ECC.
ALL ARE WELCOME - 2014
On September 14, 2014, the community changed both the worship site to the Bella Vista Center and worship time to 9:30 AM on Sunday mornings; with 28 members, and some 16 friends of the community worshiping with us. We began to outgrow our space at Bella Vista.
Spring of 2017
We moved our services to 11:00 AM at St. Paul United Church of Christ at 1250 Leonard Point Rd in the Town of Algoma on Oshkosh's west side. We are so happy to be able to return to a church setting.
We are excited to have the dedicated community that we have today: a group of people very serious about their faith who care for each other and are willing to reach out into the larger community to make God’s love more visible in the world.
In our lifelong journey, we are called to open our hearts to God, to listen to God’s words, and to respond to God’s call.
Our community’s journey is built upon discovery, change, growth and response to God’s love
as it touches our lives.
The Emmaus logo symbolizes that path and journey.