Preaching Connection: Hospitality

Reading for Preaching

The Odyssey of Homer

Telemachus is at home while suitors of his mother Penelope waste the household’s substance.  The goddess Athena has come to visit and to help, but Telemachus sees her only as a stranger: “Greetings, stranger!  Here in our house you’ll find a royal welcome.  Have supper first, then tell us what you need.”  A gracious piece...

“Welcoming the Stranger”

Jones reviews Christine Pohl, Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition: Pohl says that hospitality is a gift and a skill, but also a practice that may be learned, rehearsed, and imitated from acknowledged masters. It needs a platform of particular commitments and values, and it flourishes when good models of it have been...

Amazing Grace: A Vocabulary of Faith

Benedictine communities are known for their hospitality, even to novice visitors who will make some gaffe. P. 263: “Hospitality is the fruit of their celibacy. They do not mean to scorn the flesh, but to live in such a way as to remain unencumbered by exclusive, sexual relationships. The goal is being free to love...

Additional content related to Hospitality

Palm Sunday: Salvation’s Hospitality

In the summer of 1991 my wife and I spent some time traveling in Germany. One of our stops was a two-day visit to a pastor and his wife in Wittenberg. At that time, the fall of the Berlin Wall was still a very recent event. What had been the communist-dominated East Germany was still…


Luke 16:1-13

This set of verses is a difficult one to bring clarity to while preaching. Forget the fact that there are any number of interpretative directions you can take when sharing this parable: for every way this story can be understood, a fair amount of detail will need to be explained in order for the interpretation…


Luke 14:1,7-14

Jan Richardson describes this text as one of the many that exemplify “the endless wisdom of the table.” Of course, the wisdom comes from how Jesus transforms the space in order to reform the community. Having just spent time in one last week, the lectionary skips over a Sabbath healing story (verses 2-6) to bring…


Hebrews 13:1-8, 15-16

“Just tell me what I have to do, Pastor!” I suspect that nearly all of us have heard variations on this theme. This Sunday’s Epistolary Lesson seems to offer help in answering such questions. That may, in fact, be a reason why proclaimers’ attention is often most quickly drawn to its ethical pronouncements. Hebrews 13…


Galatians 3:23-29

Too many white Americans including Christians have made a mess of race relations by endorsing the horrors of things like Native American displacement, slavery, Japanese-American internment camps and even real estate redlining.  In fact, whether it’s in connection with the abomination that is racial profiling or the controversy that surrounds affirmative action, we still manage…


1 Peter 4:1-11

Comments, Observations, and Questions to Consider: Both new Christians and suffering Christians wonder “what kind of life have I gotten into?” In the first half of chapter 4 (our text), Peter addresses the worldview issues of the new believer; in the second half, the worry issues of the suffering one. These former pagans learn this…