Saturday, October 31, 2009

Toward a more responsible redemptive social action

Highlighted by O'Steven from John Hay, Jr., D. Min.


View of the problem - individual moral default
View of the person - moral bankrupt, "project", dependent
Position of the helper - benevolent evangelist, authority over
Nature of intervention - press for spiritual-based behavior adjustment in the dependent
Catalyst for change - conversion
Intended Result - Discipleship
Practices - preaching, teaching, mentoring, accountability
Where is God? Above
What is Salvation? non-material, transcendent
Community impact - individual lives positively impact the community indirectly


View of problem - individual & systemic default
View of person - client, dependent/codependent
Position of helper - professional caregiver
Nature of intervention - call for social-based behavior adjustment in client
Catalyst for change - connect to good resources, will power
Intended result - productive member of society
Practices - assessing needs, procuring entitlements, follow progress
Where is God? Aside
What is Salvation? social stability, relieved of social oppression
Community impact - self-sufficiency, independence impacts the community indirectly


View of problem - personal & relational estrangement
View of person - guest, gift-bearer, neighbor
Position of helper - host, toward mutuality
Nature of intervention - opens possibility for change within guest and host
Catalyst for change - sustained, respectful interpersonal interaction
Intended result - neighboring
Practices - making room, hosting, neighboring
Where is God? among
What is Salvations? realizing hope in relationship, emerging community
Community impact - interdependence between neighbors impacts the community directly

A Few Observations:

1. Hospitality offers a powerful "next step" for many faith-based initiatives struggling to breakthrough to more authentic relationships
2. Hospitality reframes redemptive social action away from specialization and professionalization while maintaining a highly disciplined approach
3. Hospitality is thoroughly Biblical in its grounding and Kingdom focused
4. Hospitality places confidence in the work of God the Holy Spirit to foster authentic relationships between guests and hosts
5. Hospitality creates a dynamic system of true freedom, clear boundaries, and mutuality among participants
6. A paradigm of hospitality is not easy to initiate and it is maintained precariously by constant reinforcement of its principles, practices and open conflict (not competition)


  1. Happy to discuss this model/approach with anyone, either here or via e-mail @ -- John Hay, Jr.

  2. Thanks John - I think you know my wife Ann. She showed me your material.....! Good, challenging notions to work through. Maybe we can have you over soon to interact with our Open Hand community if you are in town. Cheers,

  3. So happy when when someone writes about hospitality!