Today, at Nazareth House we celebrate a tradition in commemoration of Luke 24:13-35, Emmaus Day or in Coptic Tradition : “Sham el-Nessim”. The tradition is to pack a picnic and travel as the men did while Jesus walked with them on the road to Emmaus. Other religiouns celebrate Sham el-Nessim as a welcoming of Spring.
Sham el-Nessim literally means “sniffing the air” or “breathing the air” occurring annually on Monday, the day after the Easter Sunday.
Sham el-Nessim is celebrated by both Christians and Muslims so it is considered both a national and religious festival in Egypt and other parts of the world. The main features of the festival are:
People spend the day out picnicking in any space of green, public gardens, parks, at the zoo, etc. In Sierra Leone, James and the family takes a picnic to the ocean.
Traditional food eaten on this day consits mainly of salted fish (canned tuna works well), lettuce, scallion or green onions, tirmis or Lupini Beans and boiled colored eggs.
Even if you have to go to work on Monday, take some time to walk away from your desk, get outside, sniff the breeze and celebrate your personal walk with Christ.