In today’s episode, Rick and Sam are joined by Dr. Peter Gathje, Professor of Christian Ethics and VP of Academic Affairs/Academic Dean at Memphis Theological Seminary. The conversation examines the meaning and importance of hospitality, exploring its relevance in the framework of American civic life, specifically in practicing hospitality in the context of social media, in real-life relationships, and finally, in restoring our community spaces. Dr. Gathje provides us with tools, including the need to act with humility and to understand we all are “fallible, finite and corruptible,” which provides a foundation to make us more welcoming to others.

Dr. Peter Gathje joined the faculty at Memphis Theological Seminary in 2006. His research interests include farming and food, state sanctioned violence in war, the death penalty, policing, and imprisonment, homelessness, poverty, racism, holiness, alternative Christian communities, and virtue ethics. In addition to co-editing a book on Christian ethics, Doing Right and Being Good: Catholic and Protestant Readings in Christian Ethics, Dr. Gathje has written two books about the Open Door Community, a place of hospitality in Atlanta, Sharing the Bread of Life: Hospitality and Resistance at the Open Door Community, and Christ Comes in the Stranger’s Guise:  A History of the Open Door Community and edited a third, A Work of Hospitality: The Open Door Reader. 

Dr. Gathje is a founder and co-director of Manna House, a place of hospitality in the Catholic Worker Tradition located in Memphis. He helps with Room in the Inn, a shelter program involving area churches. He is active with a number of peace and justice organizations including Tennesseans for Alternatives to the Death Penalty. He frequently speaks at local churches on a variety of topics, including various traditions of Christian spirituality, hospitality for persons who are housing deprived, holiness, and issues of social justice. Prior to coming to Memphis Theological Seminary, Dr. Gathje taught at Christian Brothers University in Memphis, where he was Chair of the Religion and Philosophy Department, and Kalamazoo College in Kalamazoo, Michigan, where he also served as Associate Dean of the Chapel.

Sam Scinta is President and Founder of IM Education, a non-profit, and Lecturer in Political Science at University of Wisconsin-La Crosse and Viterbo University.

Rick Kyte is Endowed Professor and Director of the DB Reinhart Institute for Ethics in Leadership at Viterbo University. 

Music compliments of Bobby Bridger- “Rendezvous” from A Ballad of the West.