Item 1588 - Called to be hosts

Identity area

Reference code

CA ON00389 1-9-1-1588

Title

Called to be hosts

Date(s)

  • September 1976 (Creation)

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Item

Extent and medium

2 p. of textual records

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(1932-1996)

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This item is a 2 page article by Henri Nouwen entitled: Called to be Hosts, published in Faith/At/Work, September, 1976, p 30-31. Nouwen begins the article by stating ‘The call to ministry is the call to be a host to the many strangers passing by. In this world full of strangers…we search for a hospitable place, where life can be found’. Nouwen speaks then of our ambivalent feelings towards the stranger of both fear and attraction and suggests that ‘during the last years strangers have become more subject to hostility than to hospitality’. Nouwen then goes on to speak of the way in which a minister is to offer healing hospitality to the stranger. He speaks of the need to offer a space where the stranger can grow to be himself. ‘This will come to pass only when ministry is undergirded by spirituality, that is, when the outer movement from hostility to hospitality is supported by an inner movement from property to poverty. Poverty means that my identity in the final analysis is not determined by what I can do or think, but by what God’s Spirit can do, say, and think in me.’ Nouwen concludes, ‘When poverty enables us to create a friendly space for the stranger and to convert hostility into hospitality, then the stranger might be willing to show his real face’.

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Note

Published in Faith at Work (September 1976): 30-31.
Material in this article is also found in: Nouwen, Henri, Reaching Out: The Three Movements of the Spiritual Life, Image Books, Doubleday, New York, 1975.

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Accession Number

2000 01

Location

Box 294

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