This is the fourth in a series of five articles in our Life Together summer series. Alumni tell us that what makes the John Jay Institute so unique is the combination of five key components, the fourth of which is Hospitality.
By Zachary Rogers
Hospitality is a lost art.
The ability to properly set and serve a dinner or formal tea, let alone the skill and practice of being able to converse with people of different backgrounds, ages, and interests, is rarely learned in the home.
Recognizing this gap, the John Jay Institute provides an opportunity for John Jay Fellows to host a formal tea and dinner each week.
These events provide the practice necessary to become adept at social skills in a way that will serve them well in the future.
During the formal tea service, visitors from the surrounding area and Cairn University are invited to join us. The Fellows and their guests get to know each other personally and all enjoy a cultural presentation offered by one of the Fellows. These presentations can range from a poetry reading to a musical performance.
A formal dinner is hosted on each Thursday evening for one or more distinguished guests. Guests range from pastors to great thinkers in politics, economics, theology, and philosophy. These meals are prepared and served by the Fellows as a team, allowing them to gain experience in menu planning, cooking, serving, dinner etiquette, and the art of conversation.
While these things used to be taught in the home, one would be hard-pressed to find a 25-year old today who has learned the arts of hospitality and table etiquette. But perhaps one of the most important things that Fellows learn at the John Jay Institute is the art of conversation. Being a good conversationalist requires putting others before oneself, discovering what is of interest to them, and guiding the conversation so that both are engaged and pleased. All of these important skills are taught at the John Jay Institute.
Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. Romans 12:13 (ESV)