Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Ministry (DMin)



First Advisor

Phil Newell, DMin

Second Advisor

Sarita Edwards, PhD

Third Advisor

MaryKate Morse, PhD


The Seventh-day Adventist Church in the United States has the ironic and complex tension of being the most ethnically diverse denomination, as well as one of the most structurally segregated in terms of ethnicity. This structural segregation both highlights and represents a deep need for the development of intercultural community. The intentionality and value of unified diversity can be traced from the very beginning of Scripture through to Revelation, with Jesus living out its expression during his ministry here on earth. Significantly, the practice of hospitality is also a strong theme that is traced throughout the breadth of Scripture, providing both challenge and encouragement. Biblically defined as “love of the other,” it is a core tenant of the gospel and serves as a step in the journey toward greater unified diversity of cultures, providing both impetus from its theological imperatives and a possible framework for moving forward. This framework, referred to as “Cultural Hospitality,” suggests three practices that would assist the Seventh-day Adventist church in experiencing greater cultural unity: the practice of humility, welcome, and empathy. Each individually significant on their own, when practiced together, they provide a scaffolding that facilitates growth in intercultural unity. Humility provides a foundational awareness and posture that supports the practice of welcome. The practice of welcome, making space for the “cultural other” within one’s community, worship experience, and leadership, in turn facilitates a growth in meaningful relationships that enable the practice of empathy. Practicing empathy leads to repentance and lament, a personal stake in, and concern, for issues of justice. In embracing the blessing of Cultural Hospitality, not only would the church enjoy the fruit of a fuller expression of the gospel, but it would also have far greater relevance and evangelistic reach within the rapidly diversifying society of the United States.

Included in

Christianity Commons