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Hospitality is not enough

Vocation of a Lutheran College Conference, August 2011
by Paul Pribbenow on 10 November 2013

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Transcript of Hospitality is not enough

Democracy in action

The etiquette of democracy
Stephen Carter's rules for democracy
In other words...
Hospitality - and Justice
How does this claim shape our work as colleges of the Lutheran church?
"And the Word became flesh..." (John 1:14)

Augsburg's founding idea - theological and practical

Incarnational - the central Lutheran idea
that our faith is lived in the world - freed for others
God's ultimate act of hospitality
And yet...rejected -
once again grounding our calls
to hospitality and justice
Serves as a foundation for our calling as a college that embraces hospitality and justice at the intersections of faith, learning and service

"We believe we are called to serve our neighbor"
The forms that hospitality takes...
Openness to the stranger
Not random acts of kindness - a way of life - a cup of cold water - radical hospitality
God's plan - the arc of the moral universe bends toward justice
God's plan - hospitality that creates space for others to find their ways, to discern their calls
The work of justice
and our colleges
A vision of education "off the main road"
A vision of common life that is "co-created"
A vision of neighborhood well-being - colleges as "anchors"
A vision of the world - for God so
loved the world, God sent God's only son,
and now God sends us...
Education off the main road
A curricular plan
An experiential bias
An exposure to injustice, critical
pedagogy in community
A teaching and learning community -
marked by "the grace of great things"
Common life and co-creation
Sharing power, modeling democracy
The possibility of abundance
The openness to evolving social arrangements
Changing the culture of entitlement and commodification
Colleges as "anchors"
Economic mutuality - self and common interests - moving away from the "charity" model of relationships
Overcoming academic hubris
Seeing the neighborhood as classroom
Practical strategies
Partnerships and alliances
Loving the world...
God's plan, instead of our own

Hospitality is not enough...
Liberal Arts, Social justice, and the work of our colleges and universities

Paul C. Pribbenow, Ph.D.
President, Augsburg College

Augsburg College November, 2013
* Mission
* Academic programs
* Common life
* Outreach
Civility requires that we sacrifice for strangers,
not just for the people we know...
Our duty to be civil toward others does not depend
on whether we like them or not...
Civility has two parts: generosity, even when it is costly, and trust, even when there is risk
Civility creates not merely a negative duty not to do harm, but an affirmative duty to do good
We must come into the presence of our fellow human beings with a sense of awe and gratitude
Civility requires that we listen to others with knowledge of the possibility that they are right and we are wrong
Civility requires resistance to the dominance of social life by the values of the marketplace
Hospitality is the creation of free space where a stranger can enter and become a friend instead of an enemy. Hospitality is not to change people, but to offer space where change can take place… The paradox of hospitality is that it wants to create emptiness, not a fearful emptiness, but a friendly emptiness where strangers can enter and find themselves free; free to sing their own songs, speak their own languages, dance their own dances; free to leave and follow their own vocations. (Henri Nouwen, Reaching Out)
It is about learning. Research shows that knowledge retention soars to 75 percent when learning is practiced by doing, compared to retention of 20 percent when we learn by listening. That’s why community engagement is among the most powerful learning experiences our students can encounter.
Michael Sandel on
justice and the common good
* Citizenship, sacrifice and service
* The moral limits of markets
* Inequality, solidarity and civic virtue
* A politics of moral engagement
Here at Augsburg...
Our blend of Lutheran pietism and social responsibility
Our renewed commitment to caritas, civitas and civility
In their book, Radical Hospitality, Father Daniel Homans (a Benedictine monk) and Lonni Collins Pratt, describe what it was like for the monks of St. Benedict Monastery to open their worship lives to the public, when they had long saw themselves only as “professional pray-ers,” watching the world from afar.. “It is easy to pray for ‘the world’ and ‘God’s people’ when you don’t have to look into their tear-reddened eyes, or fetch more toilet paper after mass on Sunday. Something sacred and unexpected has happened since we opened our doors and our hearts…we have become a part of each other’s lives.”
Canadian theological educator, Laurel Dyskstra, suggests that this passage challenges us with the claim of radical hospitality. She writes, “Prophets have no subtlety, no appreciation for the daily compromises required for getting along. And while truly good people don’t trash the place, they can make you really look at your own life and upset your routine. Disciples and little ones are perhaps the worst of all. You know who they are: no money, no bag, no coat, bad-smelling, and talking about mercy. To get a cup of cold water, they have to come right into the kitchen.” Right into the kitchen. Now that is radical.
Nothing is as whole as a heart that has been broken.
All time is made up of healing of the world.
Return to your ships, which are your broken bodies.
Return to your ships, which have been rebuilt.

[after Rabbi Nachman of Breslav; from Kaddish, Lawrence Siegel]
“Nothing worth doing is completed in our lifetime; therefore we are saved by hope. Nothing true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history; therefore we are saved by faith. Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone; therefore, we are saved by love. No virtuous act is quite as virtuous from the standpoint of our friend or foe as from our own; therefore we are saved by the final form of love, which is forgiveness.” (Reinhold Niebuhr)
“…it is only by living completely in this world that one learns to have faith…By this-worldliness I mean living unreservedly in life’s duties, problems, successes and failures, experiences and perplexities. In so doing we throw ourselves completely into the arms of God, taking seriously not our own sufferings, but those of God in the world—watching with Christ in Gethsemane. That, I think, is faith; …that is how one becomes a human and a Christian.” (Dietrich Bonhoeffer)
“We are the only body of Christ on earth now.” (Teresa of Avila) an attitude of respect, even love, for our fellow citizens...Civility is the sum of the sacrifices we are called to make for the sake of living together...Rules of civility are thus also rules of morality. (Stephen Carter, "Civility")
Just hospitality is the practice of God's welcome by reaching out across difference to participate in God's actions bringing justice and healing in our world of fear and crisis of the ones we call "other." To live out God's welcome as just hospitality is both calling and challenge. (Letty Russell, "Just Hospitality")
"Yet for those who have caught its spirit Christianity does uphold the highest ideals for service and sacrifice on behalf of (humans) in the world." (Bernhard Christensen, "The Word Became Flesh")
Genuine hospitality offers mercy so that it might know the mercy that comes from engagement with others. If it was just about welcoming people...well, then we might as well be a hotel! (Paul Pribbenow, "To Give and Receive Mercy")
* We invite diversity
* We embrace ambiguity
* We welcome creative conflict
* We practice honesty
* We experience humility
* We become free

(Parker Palmer, "The Courage to Teach")
Public Achievement and the Center for Democracy and Citizenship

Teaching the skills and habits that accompany and sustain a change in individuals from spectators to citizens

"We Are the Ones We've Been Waiting For"

(Harry Boyte, "The Citizen Solution")
Tenets of abundance

What we have is enough
We have the capacity to provide what we need in the face of the human condition
We organize the world in a context of cooperation and satisfaction
We are responsible for each other
We live with the reality of the human condition

Peter Block and John McKnight, "The Abundant Community"
"Overcoming distrust of institutions. Thinking institutionally."
(Hugh Heclo, "On Thinking Institutionally")
Reflection & Analysis
New information
New experiences and experiences of others
Reflection & analysis of new experiences and experiences of others
Circle of Praxis
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