Hospitality

Wednesday, June 26

6-26By Carolyn Brock of Independence, Missouri, USA

Be patient with one another, for creating sacred community is arduous and even painful. But it is to loving community such as this that each is called. Be courageous and visionary, believing in the power of just a few vibrant witnesses to transform the world…

—Doctrine and Covenants 161:3c

Fish in coconut sauce, fried crickets, warm Coke, and spiced chai (tea) were among the delicacies we enjoyed in the homes of African church friends. We soon learned the hospitable sharing of food is a central theme of African community life.

We never entered a home, no matter how small, in which they did not offer food or drink. This was not preferential treatment for white missionaries. Everyone who enters an African home is offered food. To fail to give or accept hospitality is an offense, a sign that community and trust do not exist.

Feeding one another, sharing our basic substance, is the way we support each other’s being. To be in community means to live together in life-sustaining, soul-nurturing ways. Survival in tribal terms hinges on being in community.

What can we do about the survival of our tribe? How does our survival depend on being in community? How can we live up to the name “Community of Christ” without also taking on the hospitable, inclusive behaviors of Jesus, who shared physical and spiritual food? Jesus’ actions define community as life-supporting, wholeness-promoting relationships with all God’s people.

How does “creating sacred community” imply a deeper, more complex, diverse journey of becoming than we have previously imagined for ourselves? We begin by opening our hearts in hospitable ways to all who need to be “fed.”

Prayer for Peace
God of all tribes, kindred, and tongues, we need to be fed by your Spirit and by one another. May we feel welcome at your table of grace.

Spiritual Practice: Welcoming Unity in Diversity
Meditate on Unity in Diversity. Create a large circle with your arms. See and feel the diverse people God invites inside the sanctuary of Christ’s peace represented by this circle.

Who is easiest to welcome? Whom do you struggle to include? Confess the dividing walls between you and people too different or “dangerous” to invite into your spiritual home. Ask God to forgive and heal barriers that keep us from loving one another.

Peace Covenant
Today, God, I will go deeper and work on my becoming.

Advertisements
Leave a comment

2 Comments

  1. Marlene Krueger

     /  26 June 2013

    Very good remarks about hospitality and community. Very similar to the words in the Evangelist’s Blog on Hospitality. I, too, believe that hospitality and community are closely linked, that without loving hospitality we cannot have open and loving communities. I think more emphasis should be put on hospitality. Thanks for sharig.

  2. Carolyn, this is a lovely piece. Thank you!

Comments

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: