fancy a coffee?

Some of the most probing insights into the (ir)relevance of the church in society come from missionaries returning home after years away in distant - and very different - lands. While they think they are way out of touch, I have learned to listen to the startling things they have to say.

It happened last week again.

Two of my very favourites popped in for a visit. They've been off shore for about ten years. Within five minutes the hubbie was asking me,

"How come people tend to meet each other now in cafes rather than in their own homes? What is happening to the ministry of hospitality here in NZ?"

nice chatting



Dale Campbell said…
Ouch! I love meeting in cafe's! :)

On a more reflective note, I suppose some of the 'let's get back to hospitality in our homes' concern could possibly be sentimental (why can't we share meals with each other like we always have done before?), but then again, there's something about actually preparing food/drinks for others yourself, and sharing your own living space with them?

I note in passing, as well, that my ('proper' espresso) coffee-making for people we have over at our place often has me in the kitchen for a bit and delays/lessens my interation with our guests!! :)
Rhett said…
I'm going to be cynical and say it has a lot to do with claiming back ministry expenses. Also, I love coffee.

But on my last summer placement it was easiest to just grab that GST receipt from over the counter.
Paul said…
I am a bit partial to the occasional trip to a cafe - but nothing beats having people in your home. And sometimes, Dale, the conversations are better in the kitchen during the preparation!

Not sure about claiming back ministry expenses - but I reckon it is easy to waste a bit of money at cafes...
Andrew P said…
That's a bulls-eye on a blind spot for me!
Got Giddles? said…
I've noticed that when I do visits, the older people want you to come over for a cup of tea (and take great pride in preparing this for you!) and the more middle aged people enjoy meeting you in cafes for coffee or lunch. I think I prefer a cup of tea from a matching china set. And there is something about being in someone's house among their possessions and memories that puts them at ease.
Paul said…
Couldn't agree more ... plus it is a different kind of generosity when you welcome someone into your home and share it with them - when compared with just taking them down to the local cafe.
Paul Long said…
I prefer a cup of tea or coffee at home. Nicer environment and cheaper!

What I like about NZ is the "pot luck" tradition for fellowship, with home cooked food and gathering in homes. I like this so much better than my home country where for fellowship, people meet a fellowship meal at a restaurant of "coffee shop"

Another question to ask though ... is pastoral home visitation becoming )or become) something that is no longer wanted or expected?

If so, why is it?

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