Why do so many Christians resist welcoming the Syrian refugees? I am baffled by this. Embracing the stranger is an essential Christian teaching. You might say that hospitality is in the Christian DNA. (A few supporting texts: here and here and here.)
I am a Protestant who has learned to appreciate her sisters and brothers who practice the contemplative Catholic traditions. I have often experienced Benedictine hospitality. According to the Rule of St. Benedict, all guests are to be received like Christ.
Hospitality is not a naive “feel-good” enterprise. Hospitality demands something of us. To begin, we must manage our fear of the stranger. As someone who has been harmed by strangers in my past, I have had to work at developing a hospitable heart.