True hospitality is a state of being. It is marked by an open response to the dignity of each person. It is not a welcome to a place, but It is letting the other know she/he “fits in” and belongs. Hospitality is not just opening the door; it is having a welcoming countenance. Hospitality makes anxious disciples into powerful witnesses, makes suspicious owners into generous givers, and makes close-minded sectarians into interested recipients of new ideas and insights.
Adapted, Kathleen Norris
May we have welcoming and open hearts.
What does it mean to have a welcoming countenance? Consider the effect that has on others. Decide to consciously greet others that way.
Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.
You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
The word ‘hospitality’ in the New Testament comes from two Greek words. The first word means ‘love’ and the second word means ‘strangers.’ It’s a word that means love of strangers.
Nancy Leigh DeMoss
Hospitality means primarily the creation of free space where the stranger can enter and become a friend instead of an enemy. Hospitality is not to change people, but to offer them space where change can take place. It is not to bring men and women over to our side, but to offer freedom not disturbed by dividing lines.
Henri J.M. Nouwen
There is no hospitality like understanding.
How should one live? Live welcoming to all.
Mechtild of Magdeburg
I welcome every creature of the world with grace.
Hildegard of Bingen
What do I mean “open to God”? I mean… a courageous and confident hospitality expressed in all directions…. I mean an openness which is in the deepest sense a creative and dynamic receptivity — the ability to receive, to accept, to become.
Samuel H. Miller
Hospitality invites to prayer before it checks credentials, welcomes to the table before administering the entrance exam.