The Ministry of Christian Invitation
Putting God's love into action.
||Welcome guests who attend church on Sundays or Wednesdays. Invite one of them to share a meal with you.
||Learn the names of the people you come in contact with each day: the clerks at the store, bank or post office.
||Take time to have conversations with people in your neighborhood. Plan a cookout with them.
||Provide transportation for a new American family to attend church or go to the grocery store.
||Host a holiday meal for someone new to our church or new to our country.
"The central task of ministry is the formation of a
with an alternative liberated imagination
that has the courage and freedom to act
in a different vision and different perception of reality."
- Walter Bruggeman
Our objective in the Ministry of Christian Invitation is to assist
Christ-followers at Richmond’s First Baptist Church
in bringing the Kingdom of Heaven to Richmond by practicing radical hospitality
to the people Jesus loves.
Welcome to the Ministry of Christian Invitation! This Ministry has everything to
do with how we practice ‘Christian’ hospitality----it is the way we demonstrate
love to others in our homes, neighborhoods, churches, workplaces, schools,
cities, and in our world. ‘Christian hospitality’ has to do with loving the
people Jesus’ loves’---especially those who are strangers. It is a ‘radical’ way
of living and loving. This way of love is best exemplified by practicing
Writer Lonni Collins Pratt describes it this way: “The phrase radical
hospitality refers to the activities and desires that inspire individuals and
communities to welcome those who are unlike themselves. Rather than viewing any
person in terms of how they benefit us, radical hospitality means accepting the
person with no thought of personal benefit. ...To become hospitable means
finding ways to welcome the marginalized, forgotten, and misunderstood among
us.” Obviously, practicing this kind of hospitality is not for lazy people!
Marjorie Thompson, popular author in the area of spiritual formation says, “The
remarkable explosion of Christianity in the first century was due not only to
the proclamation of the gospel, but to the extraordinary quality of Christian
hospitality.” At Richmond’s First Baptist Church we are trying to practice
Christian hospitality. We are seeking to love the people Jesus loves. We desire
to do what Benedict of Nursia told his Christian brothers and sisters back in
the sixth century: “See Christ in others. Be Christ to others.” If we could ‘see
Christ in others (the good in them)’, and, secondly, if we could practice “being
Christ to others”, then maybe we could help God bring a little bit of the
kingdom of Heaven to our homes, neighborhoods, and to our own city of Richmond,
The Ministry of Christian Invitation is practicing Christian hospitality in some
of the following areas of ministry:
• Welcoming the Newcomer (guests and visitors) who attend our worship services,
activities, and special gatherings at Richmond’s First Baptist Church
• Welcoming those to our community who are experiencing brokenness and the
challenge of separation and divorce (Divorce Recovery Ministry).
• Welcoming are our new American friends (refugees from other countries---New
• Welcoming international students who come here to live and study at our
universities (International Student Ministry).
Join other newcomers attending Richmond’s First Baptist Church as we journey
toward spiritual and emotional maturity in Christ. This is a great way to get
connected with other newcomers and discover the heart of what it means to be in
Christian community. Contact
Ralph Starling for more info...