Rich Paxson

When you are the host, what gift or experience do you hope to give to your guests?
What is the experience of being a guest like?
How is it different from that of a host?

Hosting and ‘guesting’ go together like partners in a dance. Just as the lead switches, intentionally or not, between dance partners, so too at social events hosts and guests may deliberately or not exchange roles. Social occasion form and content varies widely. A tightly scripted event is like a line-dance where each dancer takes a particular place, but then moves in steps synchronized with those of the other dancers. Informal occurrences, on the other hand, encourage spontaneity not conformity. Unlike their formal cousins, informal circumstances blur the lines separating host and guest allowing togetherness to improvise and mature. I think of the Road to Emmaus narrative as an informal happening where the roles of host and guest merged into a fellowship of caring, one for the other.