Week 3 Instructions & Discussion Questions
Please make sure to open in prayer and go around and introduce yourselves. Then go ahead and watch the video. Following the video read the questions and quotes provided to prompt discussion.
Introductions & Opening Prayer
Introduce yourselves again if there is someone new
Suggested Opening Prayer-
God of grace, no one is beyond the reach of your love, or outside your limitless mercy. Move us toward those the world despises and people reject, so we may venture to follow Christ, and risk showing his love.
Stand with those who are outcast; strengthen them in peace; encourage them by your presence; and use them to build on the cornerstone of Christ, until differences are honored and respected, and all people together give you glory. Amen.
-Book of Common Worship
Play the video
Quote from Making Room: Recovering Hospitality as a Christian Tradition by Christine D Pohl
“We express respect when we give and when we receive welcome. Offering hospitality to people who are unimportant in the eyes of the world affirms their value and humanness. Especially when the larger society disregards or dishonors certain persons, respectful gestures and small acts of welcome are potent far beyond themselves. They point to a different system of valuing and an alternate model of how we can relate to one another.”
- Read 1 Corinthians 5:9-13 and 2 John 9-11 & compare the two texts while discussing:
What kinds of people are denied hospitality? Why are they excluded from the community?
How does that compare to Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:25-37)?
- A shared meal is often a “leveler”—a time when social differences matter less among people. What personal experiences come to mind that support this statement? How do people protect themselves from this leveling?
- “John Calvin attributes dignity to every person, regardless of their neediness, because every person bears God’s image and because all persons share the human experiences of vulnerability and dependence” (MR, 64-66).
Why is it important that we have biblical and theological bases for respecting the worth of every person?
- “Once you know a person and hear their story…that person becomes easier to love. They are only aliens and strangers as long as we don’t know their story.” -John Bell
How have you experienced this in your life?
- “John Wesley warned his followers to treat the poor with respect and kindness. He said, ‘If you cannot relieve, do not grieve, the poor. Give them soft words, if nothing else. Abstain from either sour looks or harsh words.” (MR, 71).
How would you communicate that you respect people while/if you are giving them assistance they really need?
- “Invitation is most affective when it is one on one, when you are recognizing the other, when you are saying their name.”- Katie Robb Davis
How has “invitation” been impactful in your life?
Extra discussion questions if time allows
- What barriers are in places that keep certain populations invisible? Think about reaching out to someone in one of these groups. What thoughts first come to mind? Feelings?
- “One practitioner, committed to seeking justice and to offering hospitality, observed, “Justice is important, but supper is essential” (MR, 74).
What is the relationship between eating together and seeking justice?
- Read the story of the encounter between Jesus and two disciples on the road to Emmaus in Luke 24:13-35.
When did the disciples realize that the stranger they had welcomed was Jesus? Why do you think they recognized him “in the breaking of the bread”?
- In what ways might hospitality be considered resistance? What are we resisting?
Suggested Closing Prayer
Jesus, make our hearts ever gentler and more humble, so that we may be present to those you have confided to our care, and in this way make us instruments of your love which gives life and joy and real freedom.
-Jean Vanier, Canada