Sunday, February 27, 2011

Saints and Scripture Welcome

‘For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in;--Matthew 25:35 (emphasis mine)

The above quote is from the parable of the sheep and rams in Matthew 25. Everyone remembers that Christ calls on all of us to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, give drink to the thirsty and visit the imprisoned, but how many of us remember that He also calls on us to welcome strangers?
Yet, welcoming others, especially strangers, is an important Christian trait. If not because Jesus said so in Matthew, then because the theme of hospitality and welcoming strangers occurs again and again. In Genesis there is the example of the Hospitality of Abraham. Later, in Hebrews, there is teaching:
Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by this some have entertained angels without knowing it. Hebrews 13:2

St Benedict of Nursia understood this when he wrote his Rule which is still used today by the Benedictines and Cistercians. In it he wrote:
"All guests who present themselves are to be welcomed as Christ, who said: 'I was a strange
r and you welcomed me'."
-- Rule of St Benedict 53

May God bless all who read my ramblings,

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