About this blogger:
Ronda Chervin received a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Fordham University and an MA in Religious Studies from Notre Dame Apostolic Institute. A widow, mother, and grandmother, she currently teaches philosophy at Holy Apostles College and Seminary in Cromwell, Connecticut. Write to her at chervinronda@gmail.com.
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We sternly urge adherence to the established norms by those who raise an uproar or a challenge in the name of a misunderstood creative freedom, and thus inflict so much harm on the Church with their rash innovations, so vulgar, so frivolous—and sometimes even lamentably profane. Otherwise the essence of dogma and obviously of ecclesiastical discipline will be weakened, in line with the famous axiom: "lex orandi, lex credendi." We therefore call for absolute loyalty so that the rule of faith may remain safe.
— Pope Paul VI (27 June 1977)

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Day 59: The Challenge of Generous Hospitality
published 16 February 2012 by Dr. Ronda Chervin

What you will read now is part of a series of 100 spiritual challenges. Each blog can be viewed separately, but for maximum benefit a reader needs to start with the introductory blog of November 18, 2011, and then continue step by step. Day One begins on Sunday, November 20, 2011.    [ Click here for 100 STEPS ]

And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” (Matthew 10:42)

Dr. Ronda’s examples: Even with take-out, dinner guests can be a big deal. My daughter had 4 friends over. Recently moved, the idea of take-out seemed like an obvious choice. She ran into a super-market with a special for Chinese New Year so we had glorious delicacies to serve. I have this little joke: “everyone talks about fulfillment, but the only time I ever see anyone looking fulfilled is eating a good meal.” Sure enough what with the gourmet foods and delicious saki, etc., soon all of us looked happy as can be. In the process some guests went beyond the usual helpfulness, such as a tough Navy Seal agreeing to cut the heads off the Talapia and a woman baking something Chinese she had never heard of before. Of course, there is also the less fun or exciting daily hospitality. When any parents ever tell me they are afraid they aren’t spiritual enough, I quote Jesus and ask them how many paper cups of water they have given their children over the years.

Since I am the least good cook in my family, my hospitality is in cleaning up before, during and after. A friend once helped me understand the goodness of this by saying that cleaning before guests come she saw as a ritual of loving welcome. I like the way this family always welcomes guests to stay over as well.

Your examples:

Prayer: Dear Mother Mary of Cana, I once was told of a traditional belief that your family was part of the group called the “gleaners” who not only picked up the left-over grain in the field but also catered festive occasions. Be that as it may, at a time when many carry heavier workloads outside the home than in the past, hospitality has become even more sacrificial. Help us women to love this traditional role and help our men to be willing to help us perform it.

Read more blog entries by Dr. Ronda Chervin by visiting RondaView. Dr. Ronda Chervin has many free e-books and audios on her website, rondachervin.com. If you go to her website and read or listen and then want to correspond with her she will be available. Her schedule does not permit, however, responding to comments on the Blog, though she enjoys reading them. Dr. Ronda’s newest project is spiritualityrunningtogod.com.

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